Philadelphia City Hall Engagement

One of our favorite things to see around here is that people can not only manipulate natural light in a creative way, but also that they can creatively use flash photography. This Philadelphia City Hall Engagement does just that. It showcases the city while highlighting Patience and Anwar

Vendor Credits

Vendor Credits: Assisted by Denidas and Nesst003
Photographer: Instagram | Website

From the Photographer

  • What was your inspiration behind the shoot and the use of light? 
For the shoot itself, the couple wanted a very urban environment. They also wanted it to be distinctly Philly, so I thought using some extensive Philly landmarks we would get the best looking pictures. We chose City Hall, Dilworth Park, and Love Park for the locations as they were all within walking radius.
For lighting, we always try to feature the sun as a backlight and then use flash to fill in the shadows as needed. Most images in this series were lit with the Magbox on a boom pole but a few photos did have rim lighting added or a second front light to fill shadows.
  •  How did you prepare your clients for this type of session? 
Not really any special preparation. Our style is editorial realism so we provide simple cues, like "draw her close to you and kiss her 3 places not on her lips." Then we start snapping photos madly and see what happens.  We put people in great angles and good light and try to let natural things unfold. We don't like over posed / glamour imagery as we feel it's not as unique or special to the couple.
  • What techniques did you use that were out of the norm? 
For the shots of blurred cars we obviously stuck the camera on a tripod and slowed shutter to around 1/10 - 1/8 of a second. The flash freezes the couple while capturing the hustle and bustle of city life.
  •  Any advice to other clients or photographers who want to do this type of shoot? 
Try to do this shoot at sunrise. Not sunset.  You'll save yourself a lot of photoshopping random people. Especially in any downtown metro area.
  • Anything else you'd like to add?
This was such a sweet couple. The bride to be was absolutely gorgeous and I could tell Anwar treasured her like the queen she is. I can't wait to see this couple get married.

How did you and your fiance meet?

Anwar first saw me at the age of 14, but was too shy to approach me, so I never saw him. He thought I was the prettiest girl in the world so he decided to add me on Myspace through a mutual friend and started to talk to me on there, but we never met in person. He called it "puppy love". A few years go by, he came across my profile on Facebook and we re-connected on there with little messages here and there. A few more years go by Anwar is attending Temple University and I am attending West Chester University. Then in Spring 2009, my girls and I decide to attend one of WCU college parties. Little did I know Anwar and his guys also decided to drive up to WCU to attend this party. We are all on the dance floor and I see him. I am thinking in my head I know this guy. I approach him and we just begin to laugh and then we danced all night. Since this day we have been inseparable. A year from the day we met, Anwar enlisted into the Navy. It was devastating to know in order for us to continue this relationship it would have to be through long distance. Even though most couples do not make it through, I am truly proud to say that our love for each other pushed us through.

What was your inspiration for the engagement photos?

Anwar and I are both from Philadelphia. You can literally catch us downtown every weekend enjoying brunch, trying new restaurants, shopping, or just sight-seeing. Center city Philadelphia is one of he most attractive parts of Philadelphia, from City Hall, Love Park sign, and the Philadelphia skyline. It was just the perfect background to capture us and the beauty of our city.

How was your experience working with your engagement photographer?

The day of our shoot was extremely cold. However, John is fast and very efficient. He knew how to pose us and capture our "good sides". He knows the city well and how to capture the beautiful backgrounds instantly. It was a fun shoot and definitely had our emotions flowing for the remainder of the day. We are even more excited for the big day! My fiance and I are very pleased and so amazed by his work. We would and will highly recommend him to others . Very professional and creative!

Share some quirky facts about you.

When most people meet me, they always assume I am a model, a professional makeup artist, or into fashion. However little do they know I am a science nerd and I love medicine, hence, my career in Pharmacy . I am first generation american, both of my parents are from Nigeria. I am scared to fly, yet I am always traveling. I do not think there is anyone more obsessed with BEYONCE!!