Wedding Photography in Stormy Weather – how to predict the weather, and what to do if it rains

Category : Photography, Wedding · (15) Comments October 31, 2014

Wet weather is always a worry for your wedding. No bride wants it to tip it down on their wedding day, and it’s a good idea to have a wet weather scenario planned. So how do you plan for the weather in England?

The first thing to say is, don’t worry about it! Easier said than done, but your wedding is going to be wonderful whatever the weather.

Be well informed. How often have you cancelled an arrangement because the weather forecast said it would pour, then the sun comes out? Basing your life on a weather report is a risky policy here in England. If the BBC say it will pour, the chances are there will be light intermittent showers. When I’m planning shoots I look at, which gives a fairly accurate idea of what the weather will be. Looking far into the distance on the morning in question is the best way to forecast the weather. If it is raining but there is mist on the ground in the far distance then I can be pretty sure that the rain will probably lift later in the day. If it is raining and there is no mist, I can expect it to rain all day. Also, the weather usually goes in phases. So if it poured yesterday and it looks the same today it will probably pour today.


above: a preview from yesterday’s rainy engagement shoot, where a great deal of fun was had and we got very wet!

Sometimes it is worth waiting for the weather, but mostly here in the UK you have to work with what you’ve got. A certain zen-like, the universe is on my side, please God, wait for the weather attitude has to be applied. And a bit  of carefully used flash! If it’s going to pour I’ll need my umbrella and my rug (to protect the subject’s clothes if need be). A shower cap for the camera and one for the flash! An assistant to hold umbrellas, And can we do some atmospheric rain shots? Could I use flash to give a sparkly effect of sunshine in rain? Will the clients be up for ‘doing rain’ – getting a bit wet in a gloriously romantic, Notting Hill style moment? Or are there windows, doors and archways that I could shoot through so that clients look as if they are outside but are actually sheltered?

Some of the best photographs are taken in unusual light. I try to see the weather as part of the creative mix. I have only ever once cancelled a shoot because of the rain and generally I find that with a bit of creative alertness one can shoot between showers and get some amazing shots. If the worst does happen and we have to cancel your photoshoot, we arrange for it to be rescheduled.

One magical thing is that I find that the sun often comes out just as the couple say, ‘I do’ on their wedding day. It is quite uncanny! And when the sun does come out after the rain, it is all the more brilliant for the rain that has gone before. The important thing is to embrace whatever weather you get and not allow it to mar your wedding. And remember that the nice soft light you get on overcast days is very kind and flattering!

Tips for couples on preparing for a photoshoot where rain is forecast:

  • Don’t panic. Unless we’re talking serious torrential rain, it’s quite harmless. Just have the attitude that if need be you’re going to ‘do rain’. You can always have a hot bath later!
  • Take some anti-frizz for your hair if you are worried that it might be spoilt by the rain.
  • Remember there’s no such thing as bad weather, only unsuitable clothing: pack some wellies (ideally funky ones!), a raincoat and an umbrella that you like.
  • Make good use of an umbrella, preferably a colourful one, whipping it out of sight when the photographer is ready to press the shutter. (Wedding dresses can be great for this as you can often hide the umbrella behind the dress!)
  • Remember a good photographer can make pictures look as if there was no rain, or as if the rain is heavy and atmospheric.
  • Remember that an overcast day is your friend. The soft light will hide many a blemish!

(15) comments

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tranny cam
5 years ago · Reply

Everything is very open with a really clear explanation of the challenges.
It was really informative. Your site is useful. Thank you
for sharing!

Barrie Photographers
3 years ago · Reply

Great advice here, I love shooting with overcast days… those ooey gooey skies are simply awesome for photos!

    11 months ago · Reply

    Keep llegué al blog Living with Lindsay, donde la blogger nos comparte su exrepiencia al hacer un diseño para almohadas inspirado en piezas que le gustan mucho pero son demasiado caras y poco compatibles con los colores

    c’est le deuxième dessin que je préfère !sans dec… elle y croit, avec ses 53 ans ? elle pense qu’on peut imaginer qu’elle bat tout le monde NATURELLEMENT ? au secours.Bientôt Brigitte Bardot va re-postuler pour l’élection de miss France !

3 years ago · Reply

very nicely written!

    11 months ago · Reply

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    11 months ago · Reply

    di sidoarjo ada gk mb???aq lagi nyari….lagi demam tinggi baking.kalo malam keluyuran dunia maya….paginya langsung praktek.klo gk diturutin….vertigo kambuh…hehehehee

Great blog – it goes to show that all is not lost in the rain. I find that challenge is trying to keep the bride upbeat!

3 years ago · Reply

An insightful and useful guide for brides or anyone else that might panic about weather. It is what it is…..

3 years ago · Reply

Great post! I always love an overcast day 🙂

3 years ago · Reply

This is a great post! Rainy day shoots are so romantic 🙂

3 years ago · Reply

Such a cute shot and really great tips! The rain can be a beautiful thing.

3 years ago · Reply

great tips! Thanks for sharing!

These are great tips for the thing that all brides and grooms worry about – rain on their wedding day. Ultimately, like you say, you just have to be prepared with a plan B and C in your locations and timings!!!

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