Smoke Effects for Wedding Photography

Coloured smoke used at weddings has of recent become much more popular, in part driven by the accessibility of off the shelf easy to use smoke products like ours. Where did it all start and are they safe to use at weddings? The simple answer is yes of course they are. However, there are some simple rules you need to follow to ensure that your experience with our products is nothing short of spectacular.

Our coloured smoke is the cleanest, most vibrant smoke worldwide

In the very beginning we did not design our products with weddings in mind, they were actually designed for the far less glamorous setting of woodlands where people were running around on stag dos throwing smoke grenades at each other. So, we guess we were always on the wedding trail with our coloured smoke, we just started several weeks earlier adding colour to the stag and hen dos of the world.

Forward wind several decades and Enola Gaye finds itself making smoke effects for everything from Hollywood blockbusters to gender reveal parties and of course the big wedding days.

Our coloured smoke is the cleanest, most vibrant smoke worldwide. We started the phenomenon of good quality ‘off the shelf’ smoke effects that could be used by the everyday me and you. Before Enola Gaye smoke products existed the options were redundant marine smoke signals, military smoke grenades or awful smoke bombs from firework shops. Our company dedicated itself to designing and manufacturing smoke effects available in every colour for every occasion. The only company doing this worldwide.

We manufacture many different types of smoke products so to cut through the confusing array of different products available we will give you the best and most popular smoke options for wedding photography.

Our most popular product is our WP40. It is often referred to as a smoke grenade, so don’t be too worried about the name, it doesn’t look like a grenade, it simply has a pull pin ignition on the side which gives it its name by which it is referred to. WP means Wire Pull which is the ignition system. A wire with a ring attached to it which is simply pulled to the side to start the smoke. The 40 is the diameter of the product in mm. This numbering follows the entire range with the exception of one product which is our EG18 which is actually 55mm (Due to be re-named EG55).

Keeping things simple, we are going to assume you need only 1 of 3 different types of smoke available from us, which is EG25 (smallest), WP40 (medium size and most popular) or the EG18 (a big smoke product, putting out 150% more smoke than the WP40).

All of our smoke effects are available in our full colour range which includes; white, yellow, blue, green, purple, red, pink, black and orange.One of the biggest questions most people have is how much smoke does it put out? We have a pictogram below that will give you a good indication. This diagram is not scientific. Measuring the size of a smoke cloud is something of a guessing game. Companies that quote a cubic size of a smoke cloud are guessing at best. Many factors affect the visibility of a smoke cloud, primarily wind.

Wind is the biggest factor when it comes to getting a great coloured smoke backdrop for any photo shoot. Breezy can heighten the effect, which also quickly disperses the smoke for other photo opportunities. Strong wind usually hinders the effect for obvious reasons, whereas no wind is perfect allowing you to shape the smoke cloud to your desire.

Moisture, temperature and how open the space is also make big differences to your shoot. Cold temperatures can keep the smoke cloud hanging low for longer whereas warm air temperatures can send the smoke higher in the air. We of course do not advise you use our products in confirmed spaces and never indoors, and wooded areas or between buildings will slow the dispersal of the smoke effect, all worth considering before you start your shoot.

Depending on how you envisage your photoshoot to come out, there are many different styles to using wedding smoke bombs. Here are some pointers that you should really consider before you get started.

  1. TEST IT FIRST. We recommend that you trial the smoke before your big day. Test them in an open space (not in public) or at the venue to give yourself an idea of what to expect. If this is not possible, we have many YouTube videos that show exactly how the smoke effect works.
  2. IT’S A PYROTECHNIC. All smoke effects, smoke grenades, smoke bombs or pellets are pyrotechnics, which means they give off smoke by burning a composition. All Enola Gaye smoke products keep the composition inside a protective tube, but it is still a composition burning inside and sparks can be emitted, so be very careful around sensitive materials such as wedding dresses. When igniting a smoke bomb always point it away from you and always expect sparks.
  3. ALWAYS READ THE INSTRUCTIONS. As simple as that. Everything you need to know about the product is written on the side of the product. The EG25 which is sold as a box of 10 products has the instructions in the box on a separate piece of paper, these should not be sold or given out separately.
  4. AVOID INHALATION. It’s smoke, try to avoid inhalation or certainly excessive inhalation. We build all of our smoke products with non-toxic compositions. Use the products in areas where people can easily walk away from the effect. This is rule number 1. If you choose to let off smoke bombs, ensure that other people can avoid the smoke if they desire.
  5. SMOKE CAN STAIN. Half of the composition in our smoke products is made up from coloured dyes. Given that this is emitted as smoke, staining can occur at close range. If you are the bride wearing your wedding dress and you are holding or igniting a coloured smoke product, you stand every chance of some staining. Many people get away with it or they are not worried by this, however you have been warned. Used as a backdrop several meters away from, you will create an awesome effect without the worry of staining.
  6. YOU CAN’T PUT IT OUT. We design our smoke effects so that the correct amount of smoke is produced for the given time. If you want a small effect for just 30 seconds, use our EG25. A WP40 produces the perfect amount of smoke for wedding photoshoots and delivers it over approximately 90 seconds. The EG18 is also 90 seconds of smoke, but produces a much denser cloud. If you want to stop the smoke coming out, you simply can’t. Once it’s ignited the only way it will stop is once it has burnt all of the composition inside the smoke tube. Even submerging it in water will not put it out, it’s like magic.
  7. PULL THE RING SIDEWAYS. Because you’re not going to read the instructions as no one ever seems too. You need to pull the ring sideways NOT upwards. Upwards may cause the wire to snap and then you’re going to blame the product. And while you’re reading this and not the instructions, we recommend that you wear gloves and eye protection when handling pyrotechnics. Sure no one ever does, and Instagram is full of people holding our smoke, but you have been told and what you do is now your responsibility.
  8. MAKE SURE YOU USE OFFICIAL ENOLA GAYE SMOKE PRODUCTS. With the growing popularity of coloured smoke at events such as wedding and gender reveal parties, make sure you use products that have been registered, tested and classified in your country of use. In the UK and Europe, Enola Gaye products are tested under CE and pass strict quality controls. In Canada and the USA likewise, Enola Gaye products pass strict testing by the government and are passed and legal to use.

That’s about it. If you read the instructions on the side of the label you have all the training you need to use it. Please use responsibly and have a great day.

Enola Gaye Smoke Grenade Range

Here’s that abbreviated description of our product range.

EG25 Micro Smoke: Approximately 30 Seconds duration. A nice small colourful cloud of smoke. The product is not much bigger than a stick of lipstick.

WP40 Smoke: Approximately 90 seconds duration. The most popular choice and produces an awesome smoke cloud big enough to manage. Not too much, but not too small. Several may be required for group photos.

BURST SMOKE: Approximately 25 seconds of very fast aggressive smoke output. Similar in size to the WP40 but twin vented, producing smoke from both ends. We do not recommend this for use in weddings.

EG18 Smoke: Approximately 90 seconds of high output smoke. Ideal for events where more smoke is required over the WP40. The unit is similar in size to a coke can.

EG18X Smoke Grenade: Getting way more serious, the EG18X is a huge, fast smoke effect that will fill small spaces incredibly quickly. Size to weight ratio, this is the most powerful smoke product we manufacture.

CM75 Cloud Maker: Upwards of 3 minutes of smoke high output smoke. Usually reserved for film making or industrial purposes. A huge smoke generator emitting enough smoke to shroud houses.

SD75 Smoke Generator: Same amount of smoke as the CM75 but emits it 3 times faster, less than 60 seconds. Enough smoke to put you on google maps. Use with caution.

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