Photographed by Photography by Aubrey

Story

I have always loved the look of backlit photos. Add snow, and it levels up the magic! This wedding ceremony was outdoors, but the reception was indoors. There was a predicted snowstorm coming that evening, but I don’t think anyone grasped how huge it would really be. As the night progressed, the snowflakes got bigger and started accumulating quickly. There was easily over a foot of snow on my car by the time I left the wedding, and the plow trucks were having a hard time keeping up with the heavy snowfall.

The sound of standing in the middle of a snowstorm is so quiet and everything around you seems to be muted. It feels intimate as it naturally mutes the noises around you and allows you to focus in on the one(s) you are with. When I saw how dense the snow was, I had to set up a flash and try some backlit photos, hoping to pull in the bride and groom as soon as it was dialed in. I took photos of guests who volunteered to jump in first, and then pulled the bride and groom out to get this shot.

This couple was pretty adventurous and I knew they would be up to standing in the snow for a quick shot, but I felt like maybe I should let them stay warm inside. After a few practice shots with guests, I asked them if they would be up to taking a few shots in the snow and showed them some of the shots I had just taken to show them it would be worth it! They were definitely up for it and came out into the snow without blinking an eye. We took several photos of them dancing in the snow, and playing a bit, but something about this shot stood out as my favorite of them all.

For this shot, I only backlit the photo and pulled up the light in front in post. It was pretty underexposed for what I usually shoot. If I attempted this shot again, I would probably play around with a flash in front as well as the back, but I love the soft front light that I ended up with in this photo so I’m not sure if I would change anything.
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Directions

CalmIntimateNatural

“Okay, I want you to pull each other in close and lean your foreheads in to touch, close your eyes, and take a deep breath. Enjoy this quiet moment together.”
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Composition

Rule of ThirdsCenter FramedMid RangeIntimate Framing

I would recommend placing the two subjects as centered as possible in your frame, leaving plenty of room above their heads to crop in a little closer. I also tried to frame it so that the lower part of their bodies were cropped at the thinnest area, creating almost a heart shape. If they are standing farther apart from each other, I would encourage them to really pull their hips in toward each other.

Focusing

Multi Point Focused on the bride’s nose Single Shot Autofocus
Light & Weather

Artificial LightBack litSnowyNight

Equipment & EXIF

1/200 f/2.0 ISO 400 WB Auto

Camera

Canon 5D Mark IV

Lens

Sigma 85mm f/1.4

Additional Equipment

A tripod to hold the flash

Flash / External Light

Yongnuo YN600EX-RT II

Flash / External Light Setup

One single speedlight centered about 6 feet behind the couple with a mini softbox over the flash. I synced the speedlight to my camera with the Yongnuo RF603C II trigger

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Light / Flash

Yongnuo YN600EX-RT II

Light / Flash Mode

E-TTL

Light / Flash Power

Full

Modifier

Vello Mini Softbox (Black)

Position

Directly behind the couple

Editing

Adobe Lightroom Classic SMAL 01

This image was edited with

SMAL 01

Challenges & Solutions

Location

Wedding / Event Venue United States

The Idle Hour, South Lake Tahoe

3351 Lake Tahoe Blvd, South Lake Tahoe, CA 96150

Final tips & Advice

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Photography by Aubrey

Photographer United States of America Canon 5D Mark IV 85mm 1.4
I’m an adventure photographer based in Lake Tahoe, CA. Life is full of big and small moments, but they are all part of each individual’s story and I am honored to capture it. My focus is on elopements and intimate weddings, portraits, and brand work.
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“It is never too late to be what you might have been.” ― George Eliot

Designed with love by Katharina + Katharina & Shayne Thomas. Background image by Adrián Vilanova

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