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Natural Light Portraits Workshop

Natural light VS modified light? Ask any photographer and you’ll open a huge can of worms. Me? It depends on how I’m feeling. While the camera geek in me LOVES to play with wireless flash and light modification, …the outdoor photographer in me, the purist, has a serious passion for using un-touched natural light to create dramatic images. It’s a creative challenge to limit yourself and make beautiful images with nothing but your camera.

Speaking of challenges, I also love the challenge of in-camera processing. It’s like shooting film slides- You pick the right film based on your desire for contrast, color saturation, etc… With digital, you have the same thing- You pick the camera profile, the in-camera contrast, saturation, hue, etc… It sounds crazy to upload / share images that are completely un-edited, but honestly, SOOC is not that difficult! And if you shoot lots of images, mastering in-camera processing can save you from photoshop-induced burnout.

I always have a great time shooting natural light portraits with other photographers. All of the following images are from the most recent NLP workshop, and have ZERO color correction or other adjustments. They’re not perfect, but they’re good practice. They are also made with 100% natural light, of course. I shot JPG and uploaded the images directly to the internet. :-)

The next “Natural Light Portraits” workshop is currently scheduled for January 30th, and the price is $145. It will include 3+ hours of shooting, and then a dinner of image review, and Q&A time. There are only five spots for any workshop, so do sign up asap if this sounds like something you’re interested in!

The workshop will be in Thousand Oaks, CA!

If you’ve already attended any of the previous NLP workshops this past year, and would like to shoot with us again, just drop me an email and I’ll put you on the attendee list. (Again, limited to 5 people)

Take care!


by Matthew Saville

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Firing Up The Wayback Machine…

A little bit of nostalgia for you all!

2005 • Rabbit Island, BC • Fuji Velvia or Provia


Ootah, ootah!

Allay loo ta nuv…


by Matthew Saville

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Orange County Wedding Photos!

I love backyard weddings! One of my all time favorite ceremony photos (from 2007) was captured through someone’s kitchen window… I enjoy the intimacy of such a private, personalized event. I love the dark, warm light during the reception. I even love the harsh, bright sunlight during the day! …But maybe I’m just nuts. :-)

So anyways, I had way too much fun photographing this wedding, in a backyard somewhere in Orange County. I’ve photographed in this backyard before actually, and the area nearby is GORGEOUS for late afternoon portraits.

But talk is cheap, so I will shut up and get to the goods! Let me know which your favorites are.

Take care,























Brides: These images are not photoshopped specially just for this blog; I don’t believe in misrepresenting the quality of what YOU get. In fact what I deliver on disc will look even better. :-) …Of course for albums and prints, I do re-process and fully retouch every image to perfection. ;-)

Photographers: All images were taken on a D700 or a D300, mostly with primes on the D700 and a 12-24 or 50-150 on the D300. All images (except #7 and #22) are completely SOOC… (I use Nikon View NX2 to sort my proofs, and Photoshop CS5 to apply watermarks and re-size…)

PS: For those of you who know what SEO is, I apologize for the title of this blog post. :-P Business is business!

Wedding Photography Portfolio | Get In Touch

by Matthew Saville

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My Contact Form Was Busted…

Dear brides, grooms, fellow photographers, and anyone else who may have tried to reach me in the past month or so!

I HATE TECHNOLOGY! Okay, just some of the time. You see, I’m a camera geek and absolutely NOT a computer geek. That’s part of the reason I use a Mac- I’m not smart enough to maintain a PC… ;-)

…Okay, so, getting to the point: If you’ve tried to use the contact form here on this blog, I didn’t get your message. Aaugghh!!
(Insert Calvin & Hobbes comic here)

Depending on if you’ve visited my blog recently, you may or may not see the correct link now in the menu at the top of this blog. (It has to do with cookies. Yum.) Bottom line: The best way (for clients) to get in touch with me has always been the contact form you can view here: Or if you’re a photographer and want to chat about something else, is the correct form. Or of course you’re always welcome to just give me a call or email me directly. :-)

2011 is still open for bookings, however I’m only going to accept 20 weddings total next year so I can take the best possible care of each client. So if your wedding is on a Saturday in the spring or fall, dates are filling fast. If you love the outdoors and want to do something BIG for your wedding photos, please get in touch asap! …Of course if you don’t make it in time, in 2011 I may do a few select bridal / romantic portrait sessions, and they’re gonna be in some really gorgeous, dramatic outdoor locations. I’m thinking the Sierras, Zion, the Rockies, fall colors back east, etc… But, more later on that opportunity. :-D

Anyways, to try and cheer myself up tonight I looked through some more 2nd-shooting jobs. I try and second shoot on a regular basis throughout the year, because they are great opportunities to get extra creative and try new angles or concepts… So, here’s a few photos from my work shooting for Andrew Jordan, and Michelle of Mila Photography, and JP of John Lauren Photographers… I’ve still got plenty of other weddings to blog too! I have so many 2010 favorites that I still need to blog! Ithink I’ll have to blog like ten photos a day to get through them all before 2011… On that note, check out today’s ten pictures!


Portfolio | Contact (the correct link!)

by Matthew Saville

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I Love In-Camera Black & White!

(Nikon D700, Nikon 12-24 DX at 20mm (FX) – SOOC w/ “Monochrome” picture control, contrast +3, orange conversion filter.)

I really like the sense of commitment that comes with shooting in-camera B&W. (Thank you Becker for teaching me to be brave with my JPG processing!) Thinking about images BEFORE you click them will help keep your artistic eye as sharp as possible.

In my opinionated opinion, getting geeky about camera equipment and stuff is like running with scissors- if you’re not careful, you might lose your eye. Megapixels, Photoshop, and “RAW headroom” have almost nothing to do with how compelling an image turns out.

Okay, maybe in a professional situation it’s a little risky to crank your contrast to the max, unless you’re shooting RAW and you’re just pretending to risk everything. (Which is probably the smarter choice most of the time, and is the case for this particular image…)

Yes, for the album, or a wall canvas, the images will receive plenty of love in Photoshop, burning and dodging and whatnot. But either way, the goal is to capture an image that can stand on it’s own two feet BEFORE all the editing.

At the very least, think about how images look on the back of the camera. It’s fun to challenge yourself each time you click an image. There’s always room for improvement, playing with light, pushing the envelope… I look forward to each new opportunity to assess light, location, and try to bring out the absolute best my eye has to offer. :-)

More soon,

Portfolio | Contact

by Matthew Saville

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