Sunday, August 16, 2009

Shove Chapel at Colorado College

I have to admit that after having shot several weddings in the past couple weeks that were all either outdoors, in someone's home, or in a new modern church, is was just awesome to shoot a wedding today in the wonderful chapel at Colorado College, Shove Chapel. According to it's web site it's built in a Norman Romanesque style, modeled after the famous Winchester Cathedral, a stone from which was used as the cornerstone of Shove Chapel.

From a photography standpoint, there were plenty of plusses, and only a few minuses. On the minus side: it's a very dark interior from the back up to the transept and alter. And, there are many columns supporting the infrastructure which you have to work around. Both of these minuses are far outweighed by the positive aspects of shooting there (and easily worked around).

I have to admit I'm a total sucker for "heavy" church when it comes to the structure of a church building. One of my favorite things to do when traveling (especially in Europe) (and I have hundreds of photos to prove this) is to visit cathedrals and basilicas, getting as many photos as I can from different angles, of different features. I think I shot in 6 different churches my last visit to Paris alone. I love the sense of awe you can get out of stained glass, flying butresses, dark corners that rise up into sunlit rafters, whatever: I'm a fan.

So Shove Chapel at Colorado College in Colorado Springs is a very nice (and an ok size for an American church, seating just under 1000). With two lofts at each end of the transept, there's some vantage points to shoot down from. There's also a loft in the back of the church over the entrance... requiring a zoom to shoot from (which I used here in this photo).

But they've added some stage lighting from the two side lofts which help illuminate the stage or alter area, itself containing a beautiful pipe organ in the back of it, and with a grand piano.

Shove has nice side aisles under cascading arches, a smaller side chapel dedicated to the Shove family with an interesting plaque giving a brief history of the family from the early 1600's, and many features to shoot with on the outside.

This wedding in particular had 4 bridesmaids in red gowns, groomsen in supporting colors under black tuxedos, the bride in a beautiful white gown, everything was perfect for the location.

They left in a '68 mustang convertible... you don't get much more classy/hip than that!

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