• afternoon
  • Animals
  • broken rules
  • calm
  • Center Framed
  • Cloudy
  • holding each other
  • Horses
  • Middle Thirds
  • Natural Light
  • Posed
  • Soft Light

The story behind the image

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Nadja & Christoph got married in Iceland and it was such an incredible elopement to capture. This image was captured on the second day of their elopement and we were gearing towards the end of the day.

After hitting up Skogafoss we ended up drenched by the waterfall – it’s always incredible when couples go the extra mile for their images. After getting warm and dried up on our journey back to their cabin, once we arrived, we had to capture a few images with the Icelandic horses running around the fields.
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Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

At this stage like most of the time when I’m shooting things were pretty relaxed, but I knew the shot I wanted, so I needed to get there by phases in a relaxed manner. Rather than ask N&C to stand in front of the horses, and ta-da there’s the shot, I asked if they were cool riding them – that way they would get comfortable with the horses and vice versa. Nadja already had that in the back of her mind so it was an easy yes for both of them. After that, the horses were pretty chill around them (they were not wild anyway so it came pretty instantly) and I asked them to get more involved with the horses and pet them. They pretty much swarmed in and once we had that setting I asked N&C to get closer and not interact with the horses but just each other.

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What did you say?

Christoph could you please hug Nadja from behind and just enjoy the moment. Feel free to close your eyes or chat about your favorite part of the day. (At this stage feels were pretty sweet so I asked them both to turn their heads to the left and shabang).

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Tone of Directions



In terms of composition, I kept N&C centered, slightly wide, still and everything else swirling around them. When you are dealing with animals you want to keep things serene and cool.

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Center Framed


Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

Most of the time I use back button focus and recompose the scene to whatever composition works best, that’s what happened here. Lately, though, I have been using live-view much more as 5D Mark IV is perfect for it.

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Focus Mode

Single Shot Autofocus

Focus POints

Single Point

Focused on

The Brides face

Equipment &

Canon 5D Mark IV
Canon 35mm f/1.4 L
1/250 @ f/1.4 ISO100 WB-Cloudy

The way the EXIF is written out follows the common photographic method (with the inclusion of White Balance at the end). Here it is broken down:

Shutter Speed @ Aperture ISO White Balance.

Light & Weather

Soft backlight at the end of the day like this is most of the time dreamy, especially when it’s softened by clouds. Expose for the skin or slightly under expose to get all those sky details but above all don’t over expose things as it’ll be harder to recover details.

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Light Type

Natural Light

Time of day




Editing Workflow

How did you edit this image?

I use my own presets which over the years have changed, but have kept my main adjustments like exposure, temperature, and contrast quite consistent. After my LR preset I apply ASE (Alien Skin Exposure) as a batch just to punch the image – that literally is the name of the preset – and increase the sharpness, grain, and overall look of the image.

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Editing Software
Adobe Lightroom Classic
Preset Used
Custom Preset


I wouldn’t say that it was a challenge but I constantly had it in the back of my mind that the couple wasn’t fully dry and warm so I kept things short, sweet, and at their own pace constantly checking in they were ok. Empathy is one of the best things that you can offer to your clients.

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The relationship already established through emails and calls meant that N&C wanted to bring all the good vibes to the images we created those two days. I constantly emphasize to couples that whilst I’m the photographer this involves teamwork in revealing your own self to them and the camera.

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Location Name


Location aDDRESS

Akurgerdi, Selfoss, Iceland

Loation Type

Garden / Field



In terms of locations, research, research, and research. Once that’s nailed down make sure you connect with your couple and go with the flow because if you are relaxed, they are relaxed and that very much shows in the images you create.

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