I wasn’t planning on writing a post on the heavens opening and lashing you with rain on your wedding day, but came across this image as I was archiving some previous wedding photos and thought I might add it to my Plan B wet weather options list.
You know what they say about having a Plan B? If you have a back up plan, you won’t need it! Well, I don’t know anyone that actually says it, but I adhere to this mantra myself and it’s served me pretty well so far!
Most of the time in Melbourne, we’re fortunate with relatively fine weather conditions so even if there is a downpour of rain, you can be fairly confident that it will pass quite quickly allowing you to get back outside again. Whilst it may not be blue skies and brilliant sunshine, there will be plenty of natural light to carry a photo shoot.
With that said, there are those occasional days when it rains. And rains. And rains. On these days, you’ll be glad of that Plan B!
I always draw up a list of wet weather locations, just in case I can’t make use of the usual popular wedding photography locations in Melbourne. The last thing I want is a bride and groom sheltering from the rain with a photographer scratching his head and wondering where to go.
If you’d like to chat about your wedding photography locations then please get in touch as I’ll be able to offer ideas for most eventualities.
In case you’re wondering where the above photo was taken, you might be disappointed to learn that it’s in a building that doesn’t allow wedding photography – the foyer of 101 Collins Street. I wasn’t planning on using it as a location but we were using it as a shortcut to reach Flinders Lane and I rattled off a few frames on the way through. Be warned, there are 24 hour patrols and they don’t allow wedding photography so we won’t be using it again as a wet weather wedding photography location.
Which wedding photography locations in Melbourne can we use if it rains on my wedding day?
Here are a few suggestions of wedding photography locations in Melbourne that you might like to consider if it rains on your wedding day:
Parliament of Victoria
Every man, woman and their dog are likely to be here if it’s raining on your wedding day. That said, most Melbourne wedding photographers are a co-operative bunch and want to get the best photos for their clients as well as help out their colleagues so will move along pretty quickly in order to give everyone a fair go at the location.
It works well since it’s undercover, yet still has a very traditional Melbourne look about it – everyone recognises the stone columns and huge carved wooden doors. Looking out of the building towards the city, you might still be lucky enough to incorporate some of the city into the photos while staying dry.
Fitzroy Town Hall
Sometimes known as the ‘poor man’s Parliament’ due to it’s visual similarity to Parliament but without the recognition and crowds Located on Napier Street, Fitzroy, this building is usually a little quieter than Parliament but with a design dating back to 1873 it still offers a classic Melbourne look with it’s looming columns and high doorways. It ticks the undercover location box nicely!
South Melbourne Town Hall
Similar in design to Fitzroy Town Hall, this is another small version of Parliament, and again offers a little respite from the crowds. Even on a wet day, you might find that you are the only wedding party there.
South Melbourne Market
Close by to the Town Hall is South Melbourne market, and on a sunny day this might not be my first choice for a location, but on a wet day this might be an absolute lifesaver! Finding the right stall or archway is the key to making this place work. If all else fails, everyone could pile into the dumpling shops and get their post ceremony feed on – it might make for some fun; albeit non-traditional photos.
101 Collins Street
The foyer of this building is quite grand with chequerboard tiled floors and looming stone columns, BUT… wedding photography is not allowed in the foyer so keep moving down the list!
Glasshaus Inside on the corner of Stanley St & Swan Street in Richmond could be worth calling in advance if heavy rain is forecast as they have a lush indoor jungle ready and waiting that is perfect for photos! As long as they don’t have another wedding or function booked, you might get lucky!
Your Wedding Car
Have you booked a classic car for your wedding transport? The back seat of a classic car can look awesome in wedding photos and you get to stay dry! Even a limousine can work with a carefully positioned flash and a bit of space – you might have to kick the bridal party out though! Send the photographer out into the rain and get some photos through the window and raindrops for a really romantic shot.
Melbourne institution, Pelligrinis is often busy, but it can get even busier on a wet day so it’s worth sending a scout ahead to check it out before trying to get in with a whole bridal party.
It’s good to recharge here with a coffee and grab some candid photos of the couple relaxing with friends. It might also buy the photographer some time to work out where the next stop will be.
Melbourne University has some beautiful undercover areas including the quadrant and underground car park (which also featured in Mad Max!).
Be warned though, the University does require you to organise and pay for a permit in advance.
Is it raining cats and dogs? I’d say give it a crack! After all, what are they going to do apart from kick you out the grounds or hand you an invoice?!
Under a Bridge
A bridge provides shelter and a moody atmosphere for some cracking black and white photos. Again, with the aid of a couple of flashes, the functional underside of the bridge can be given an architectural and even a romantic look when working with an experienced wedding photographer.
Bridges in Melbourne that spring to mind are Flinders Street Bridge (with a bar right next door, which is handy!), Spencer Street Bridge and Church Street Bridge.
Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
The side of the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre is an expansive and undercover area that can work well for photos. It can be a bit grey and seems like just a series of jaunty angles fading off into the distance, but it’s definitely a viable option and you’ll be surprised what a photographer sees in what appears to be an average scene.
Are you spending your first night as a married couple in a fancy hotel? Many of the upscale hotels in Melbourne have good foyer areas that can be utilised for wedding photography. The Langham, Crown Promenade and Hotel Windsor all have impressive foyers or aspects of the building that you could utilise
The friendly staff at the Hotel Windsor are always worth speaking to if you find yourself in a pinch. Suggest leaving the bridal party in the Cricketers bar while the couple use the hotel for photos on the historic stairwell. It seems like a fair transaction to me!
Showtime Event Group, the team behind weddings at Rippon Lea Estate, Old Melbourne Gaol & Cargo Hall can also offer couples and their photographer access to another of their venues, the State Library.
An hour long tour of the best bits of the building, taking in the La Trobe Reading Room, Pendulum Staircase, Cowen Gallery and The Ian Potter Queen’s Hall does come at a price unfortunately, but it could be better than having wet feet at the reception!
The $500 fee includes a staff member to whisk you between locations and help in moving along other visitors who might get in the shot.
If you’re looking at a Melbourne monsoon on your wedding day, this could be a great investment for both your photography and retaining your bridal party as friends!
Who’s afraid of a bit of rain? Grab your umbrella and get out into it for some photos that include the rain. An experienced wedding photographer will know how to illuminate the rain and create a cracker of a photo.
If you need people to hold umbrellas out of shot and keep you dry between shots, grab the groomsmen – their job is to help your wedding day run as smoothly as possible so make use of them!
Well, I hope that your wedding day has bright blue skies in the morning, followed by light hazy cloud in the afternoon to give you perfect wedding photography conditions, but if it doesn’t I hope you find the above suggestions useful.
Whatever the weather, don’t forget that you are marrying the person you love and that’s the only thing that really matters!