Before
the Shoot

Location Equipment
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This shot was taken in April in the Dolomites, precisely we are on the famous Braies Lake. Initially we had not thought that in April we would still find it frozen, but instead upon arriving we were immersed by the whiteness of snow covering everything. Since we shot during the sunrise, the light was very simple to work with, even if it was reflected from the white ground. The raws were totally tending to blue due to the reflection of the sky on the white snow. I was scared that later during the postproduction time I wouldn’t be able to get them the way I wanted, but I was pleasantly surprised with the result.
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Location

Location Name

Braies Lake

Location aDDRESS

39030, Braies BZ

Country

Italy

Location TYPE

Mountains

Equipment

Camera

Sony A7R iii

Flash

None

Lens

24-70MM F2.8 GM

Lens Filter

None

Other Equipment
No additional equipment was used.

During
the Shoot

Directions Composition Focus Light & Exposure
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Directions

Tone of Directions

Calm

Action of Directions

Posed Serious

Description

I asked the bride to get on the rock because I wanted her higher than the ground. Therefore, I helped her up with her long skirt because the ground was slippery. Then once stable, I told her to enjoy the peacefulness of the moment and the silence of the mountains, to look around, and then to lightly touch the flowers

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What was said

Kristina, i would love you to be framed on that rock, with the mountains around you. Once there, enjoy the moment. Hear the sound of the silence, the quite beauty of the winter season on the mountains. I would love to see your profile, so turn a little bit, and hold your flowers looking at them

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Composition

Why I composed the way I did

For this frame I wanted to frame the bride by putting her exactly in the center, surrounded by the snowy landscape. But when i saw the results, something didn’t work. So I tried putting the subject slightly lower, off-center, so as to give more breathing space at the top. In this way, however, the foothills of the mountain and the horizon line were right behind the subject, disturbing the bride’s silhouette. So I also looked for a rock to shoot higher up, and finding it I noticed that from above it worked much better

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Compositional Rules

Leading Lines Rule of Thirds

Compositional Framing

Lower Thirds Wide Higher Angle Full Body

Focus

Focus mode

Single point auto focus

Focus Technology

Single Shot Autofocus

Focused on

bride's flowers

Focus description

I always shoot with a single point of focus, it wasn’t hard in this case because the subject was very far away from the background.

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Shutter Speed

1/2000

Aperture

f/2.8

ISO

250

White Balance

Auto

Other Light Sources
No additional light sources were used.
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Light &
Exposure

How the light was used

I knew that since we were shooting in the snow we might run into some light management problems, so we chose to start shooting during the first light of the morning. Being in a lake, surrounded by the mountain, I also knew that it didn’t make sense to go to the location as soon as the sun would rise because there wouldn’t be much light anyway. We were in a valley, and it would be some time before we could see the sun. So we went to the site about an hour after sunrise, so that light would still be very soft, but the lake would still be illuminated. We woke up at 5am, drove for more or less 1 hour, and arrived to the site at 6.30 – avoiding the crowd of tourists.

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Type of light

Natural Light

Time of Day

Afternoon

Quality of LIght

Soft

Weather

Snow

After
the Shoot

Editing & Presets
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Editing &
Presets

Editing Software used

Lightroom

Preset Used

own custom preset

How I edited this image

I edited this shot on Lightroom, using my custom preset with warm tones. I adjusted a little bit the white balance in order to enhance the shades of orange. During the session the white balance was set to auto, and the raw had tones tending toward blue. I wanted to warm it, especially the shadows, to make sure they tended toward orange, while I added some blue on the highlights. I decreased the whites, and raised the shadows a bit, so that the final image would be “softer” and more dreamy looking

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Conclusion

Challenges Solutions Advice

Challenges & Solutions

Events that were challenging during the shoot

the problem of tourists were solid. we were worried that once we got to the famous braies lake we would find it crowded.

Solutions I found

arriving on site very early even though this meant waking up very early allowed us to avoid the crowds

Advice

I am pleased with this shot and especially with the editing I was able to do. if I could change anything, I would shoot from even higher than the subject, perhaps with a drone or ladder. the location did not allow me to climb higher than this but looking at the shoot now, if the subject had a little more space between his head and the beginning of the mountains in the background, the photo would have turned out even better.
Regarding the logistics of the photo: always remember to have the bride wear thermal pants and mountain shoes if you are shooting at high altitude! Under the wide skirt you can’t see them, but the bride will be much more cooperative and will pose for you more willingly. Keep her warm!
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Photographed by

Anna Ascari

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