MS04052021

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Throughout the wedding day, there are a ton of small little things happening. Sometimes they’re obvious, other times, not so much. As wedding photographers, one of our key skills is to be able to notice these moments and act upon it without hesitation. It’s a skill that you can only really get good at through practice and just training your eye to anticipate moments. That, and always having your camera ready.

In this case, our bride wanted to go freshen up with her sister before the couple shoot and as we wanted to include this moment in the storytelling part of the day, we followed her from behind and started shooting. It was at that moment that they turned around the corner and the light suddenly shone on them with such a beauty. We were fortunately ready for the shot as we were already taking pictures of them. As that moment happened, we saw it, and shot it. Had we not been paying attention – this brief little chance would have gone by and we wouldn’t have even noticed it.

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How did you compose your image?

We were shooting the ‘journey’ of the bride and the sister with a wider lens as we liked to showcase the castle and where they were. It also helps with storytelling to see a transition between locations. Just before this moment happened, we knew we wanted to show them turning around the corner so we let them get ahead of us a bit so we could include that corner. We balanced the frame with having the subjects just off-center to the right, while the “corner subject” crept in on the left.

How and what did you focus on?

The focus was on our subjects, and very simply we used our single point auto focus. The main reason we do this besides out of habit is just that we like to have complete control over what is being focused. We have tried the servo modes where the camera tries to track subjects, but we found we have more accurate shots when we just use the old fashioned “half press, focus, shoot” method.

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How did you use the light in your image?

As the girls moved into the sun around the corner, we had to be quick with our exposures. We quickly increased our shutter speed to account for the sudden blast of light. There was no science behind this calculation – only feeling. A feeling that gets more and more accurate the more you understand and use your camera.

What was the gear & settings you used?

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Camera

Canon 5D Mark IV

Lens

Canon EF 50mm f/1.2 L

Filter

None

Other

None

Shutter Speed

1/1600

Aperture

f/2.5

ISO

160

White Balance

Auto

How did you edit your image & what did you use?

The edits were done with an experimental preset that aimed to keep things a bit more natural even though we opted to go a bit darker to enhance the light. Since the light that was illuminating the dress was a key factor in this image, we edited around this. We darkened the edges with a radial vignette, kept the exposure and contrasts relatively low and always kept any eye on the skin tones.

Software Used

Adobe Lightroom Classic

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What challenges did you face?

The main challenge with this shot was to get our exposure right as fast as possible. As they had just walked out of the shade from the entrance tunnel, our cameras were still set to expose for a darker scene.

How did you solve them?

There are no real tricks or tips to solve this besides being very affluent with your camera and knowing where what
buttons are and how to manipulate them quickly. As the girls hit the harsh light we saw our meter jump to “over exposed” and quickly raised our shutter speed.

Can you share any last thoughts or advice?

Always be on the look out for these little moments. While they may seem insignificant at first, sometimes you’ll capture a truely beautiful moment. Not just for you, but for your bride and groom.

As much as possible, learn your camera. Learn where everything is, what it does, why it does it and how to change it to what you want. It is hands down one of the most important things to know.

MELLI and SHAYNE

Shooting since

2014

Current Home

Germany

Website

Instagram

We are Melli & Shayne, a couple coming from vastly different worlds but have been inseparable ever since we met in Zanzibar. We have been passionately capturing love stories since 2014 and have loved every step of the way. We love to meet fellow photographers, to share our knowledge amongst a bottle (or two) of wine and support every one wherever we can.

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