Pawleys Plantation in Pawleys Island, SC is still one of my favorite wedding locations. The staff is great and everything is always well organized. Sunsets are also beautiful in front of the clubhouse and out of the golf course itself. Kiely and Carson, the bride and groom, had some of the best smiles I’ve had with a wedding couple. In almost every picture, especially when they looked at each other, they had huge natural smiles and looked very happy. This always makes it easy to get great pictures.
Detail shots and getting ready pictures before the ceremony
This wedding had a small wedding party with only two bridesmaids and two groomsmen. I actually like smaller groups, it seems like those weddings are always more relaxed. Kiely didn’t want any pictures before she put on her dress, so I started out with portraits of the groomsmen and details shots of the location. I really liked some of the pictures with the groom helping his father with his tie, and of the best man fixing the groom’s tie. After the bride was dressed I did my typical portraits of her standing in the doorway light, and then out on the private patio area beside the clubhouse. Even though she had her veil on, I had her mom do some pictures touching the veil and pulling it over her shoulders. These turned out especially beautiful with the soft light on the patio.
Wedding ceremony overlooking the Pawleys Plantation golf course
The ceremony was held on the lawn behind the clubhouse with a great view of the lake and golf course. The cute ring bearer forgot to hold up his “ring security” flag until he was almost down the aisle, so I barely got a shot of it. I loved some of the first look pictures with the huge smile on the groom’s face, and the bride getting emotional walking down the aisle with her father. They had a big smile during the whole ceremony and especially when giving their vows.
After ceremony family and wedding party pictures
After the ceremony we went down the shady area near the lake and did all the family pictures. It was a little early in the afternoon so the sun was pretty harsh. I’m really glad Pawleys Plantation has a lot of nice trees to give some shade. I still have to be careful with the spots of bright sunlight that make it through the tree branches. It helps using my powerful dual Godox AD200 flash to give some fill light and balance out subjects in the shade from the bright background.
Even though the sun was bright and it was really hot, the wedding party went out on the golf course and did some fun pictures. It can still look very nice, even in the bright sun, if you place the sun behind the subjects and use some fill light from a flash to balance out the light. Finally, we did wedding party pictures in front of the clubhouse by the front door columns.
First dance, reception and fun photo booth pictures
Because it was still a couple of hours before sunset, we decided to wait until later in the evening to do the pictures of the bride and groom. They went inside and did the first dances, ate dinner, and then the cake cutting. I also setup my photo booth for this wedding. There were a lot of kids at this wedding and they loved going in the photo booth over and over again. The adults were really having a great time with it as well. I got some new props recently, including an Infinity Gauntlet, that everyone was having fun with. The stones even light up on the glove! Even the little kids were enjoying looking at their pictures on the nearby iPad after taking them in the photo booth. I’ve really got a nice photo booth setup now and I recommend adding it on if you think it is appropriate for your wedding. Everyone always has a great time taking fun pictures.
Beautiful sunset pictures with the bride and groom
Finally, for the most important part of any wedding, we did the portraits of the bride and groom. We went out at the ideal sunset time to get the beautiful soft light coming through the trees in front of the clubhouse. Again, I used some fill flash from my studio lights, to highlight the bride and groom against the bright background. Pawleys Plantation always provides me with a golf cart to take the couple out on the golf course for pictures. Since the bride didn’t have high heels on that would damage the greens, we were able to walk out and get some beautiful shots of them by the lake and fountain.
Next, we went further out on the golf course, to one of my favorite spots by an old oak tree. I really loved the composition with some of these pictures. I do try and follow the rule of thirds when it’s appropriate, although I don’t worry about this if a picture looks better with the subject in the center. This was a good opportunity to have the bride and groom in the left side of the image with the sunset and reflection in the water balancing them out on the right. Finally, we went out to the beautiful area of the golf course, overlooking the marsh in Pawleys Island. I always bring my 35mm lens when we go out there. There isn’t much room to back away from the couple in this location. Even with the wide angle lens, I loved the one of them kissing with the full moon in the background. I hope you enjoy the pictures. If you are having a wedding at Pawleys Plantation and need a photographer please let me know!