• Africa
  • holding each other
  • Soft Light
  • Playful
  • Overcast
  • Outdoor
  • Natural Light
  • Marula Tree
  • Looking at each other
  • Grumeti
  • afternoon
  • full body
  • Elopement
  • Cloudy
  • Center Framed
  • calm
  • broken rules
  • almost kiss
  • Wide

The story behind the image

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When we were doing our location scouting for this elopement in Tanzania, we found that one of the things that caught our eye the most was not just all the incredible wildlife, but the trees.

These trees are so symbolic to the African plains and as we knew our couple loved everything about Africa, we wanted to use them in a few images. Finding them was not a challenge, but choosing one that had the “prettiest” shape meant we just had to keep our eyes open for those little details. When we took our couple out for the shoot, we stopped along the road, and just up ahead we saw this tree. It had a perfect shape (in our eyes) and we knew right then and there that we wanted to use it.

In the end, what made this really special was that we let the landscape inspire us and to use the features in our image.
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Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

We had our couple stand facing each other and to stand as close as possible. Even asking them to have their bellies touch. From here, we asked our groom to gently bring his hands up and hold just under our brides jawline and on her neck, and cuddle her by bringing their foreheads together. We then had our bride bring her hands up to hold his and for them both to whisper something sweet, something tender and something beautiful to each other.

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What did you say?

Stand facing each other and get as close as possible. So close your bellies are touching. Bring your hands up and gently hold her neck and caress her jaw… there you go. Bring your foreheads together. [Bride] bring your hands up and hold his… even whisper sweet nothings to each other

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Tone of Directions



We really focused on our composition for this shot as we wanted this symbolic tree to play a big role in the image. We had our couple share the center of the frame with the tree since both balanced each other out. We also crouched slightly and shot it from their “shoulder level” as we wanted our couple to stand proud amongst the landscape behind them.

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Center Framed


Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

Focusing was really no challenge here as we had plenty of light and contrasts to work with. We moved our single point autofocus over our couple and fired away.

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Focus Mode

Single Shot Autofocus

Focus POints

Single Point

Focused on

The Brides face

Equipment &

Canon 5D Mark IV
Canon 50mm f/1.2 L
1/1600 @ f/2 ISO125 WB-Auto

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

This shot was taken just as the storm was forming in the sky, and at this point – the sun was completely hidden behind a thick layer of clouds. This meant that we were fortunate enough to work with very soft light and could really take advantage of composing our shot in any direction.

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Light Type

Natural Light

Time of day



Editing Workflow

How did you edit this image?

The edits are made to be warmer with a big focus on skin tones and light play with shadows and highlights. A few minor local adjustments were made (Gradient and Brush) as well as finishing off with a fine layer of grain. The whites are not blown out nor are the blacks 100% crunched.

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Editing Software
Adobe Lightroom Classic


We had no particular challenge with this image.

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Sorry guys, no solutions to share here :)

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Location Name

Sasakwa Lodge

Location aDDRESS

Grumeti Game Reserve, Tanzania

Loation Type




In almost every landscape that attract you, you have to think about what it is that attracts you. In this case, we absolutely loved these trees as they’re so symbollic to Africa. Try use those ‘features’ in your composition.

If you want to make your couple stand more “proudly” amongst a relatively flat landscape, try shooting from a slightly lower angle. It adds “size” to your couple which is powering.

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