Photographed by Melli & Shayne

Story

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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Composition

Broken RulesWideFull Body

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.
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If you have the chance, try and frame contextual elements. Shooting a bit wider will help the viewers understand where your subjects are. Also keep your eyes open for leading lines and other compositional elements that you can quickly turn to to frame the shot.

Focusing

Single Point Focused on The Brides body Single Shot Autofocus
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.
Light & Weather

Harsh LightDirectional LightNatural LightSunny

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.
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Equipment & EXIF

1/1600 f/2.5 ISO 160 WB Auto

Camera

Canon 5D Mark IV

Lens

Canon 50mm f/1.2 L

Editing

Adobe Lightroom Classic M&S The Roots Presets

Software used:

 

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.
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This image was edited with

M&S The Roots Presets

Challenges & Solutions
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.

Location

Courtyard Italy

Schloss Freudenstein

Castel Freudenstein Str. Masaccio, 39057 Appiano sulla strada del vino BZ, Italy

Final tips & 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.
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Melli & Shayne

Photographer Germany Canon 5D Mark IV Canon 50mm f/1.2 L
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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Everyone fails. It’s how you take it that will separate you from the rest. Failure is a lesson. And knowledge is a win.

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

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