Photographed by Melli & Shayne

Story

When it came time to start shooting, we were a little early on the “sun clock”. We normally would have waited a bit until it had dropped below something to give us that gorgeous soft golden light, but as to not rush everything and allow time for our couple to warm up – we started shooting a bit before all that happened.

We are totally not against shooting into the light and do quite enjoy it. In this particular case, we made sure to have the sun directly behind our couple and then position ourselves so the flowers (and part of the couple) intersected with the sun. 



We did this for a couple of reasons; to create a beautiful flare over the couple and to help out camera find its focus. Shooting into the light can often be challenging for your camera to find the focus as everything becomes very hazy and washed out.
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Directions

EnergeticPlayfulKissing

Calm Energetic
Planned On the spot
Tricky Easy
Posed Natural
We had actually just finished with a pickup shot where our groom had lifted his bride up off the ground. This was taken shortly after as he put her back down, and so the directions only followed what we had told them prior to this shot.
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“Careful when you put her down! Don’t drop her and make sure you hold on! And go in for that kiss! “
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Composition

Rule of ThirdsLeading LinesFull Body

We chose to shoot this image in portrait since we wanted to make sure we had enough space to include the sun in the frame while also keeping the couple full body. We had them in the center of the image to bring immediate attention to them while also trying to align the sun just behind the couple.
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If you are shooting into the sun and it’s low enough, try and use your couple to block it slightly so you get a beautiful flare happening.

Focusing

Single Point Focused on The Couple Single Shot Autofocus
Since this was shot directly into the sun, it was a bit tricky to find the focus. What we did was position ourselves so the couple completely blocked the sun, we found our focus, and then slightly moved back to our original composition.
Light & Weather

Back litBrightNatural LightAfternoon

We wanted to shoot into the light, so to achieve this we had our couple stand between us and the sun. We did this to firstly create a flare on our couple as the sun was still quite high and strong, but also to help create a backlight to separate them from the background.
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Equipment & EXIF

1/1000 f/2.2 ISO 160 WB Auto

Camera

Canon 5D mark IV

Lens

Canon 35mm f/1.4 L II

Editing

Adobe Lightroom Classic M&S The Roots Presets

Software used:

 

The edits of the image started with applying our protea preset and getting our white balance and exposures right. We adjusted the exposure, contrast, shadows, highlights, and clarity to help with this. Once we liked our tones and were happy with the overall edit, we went in and used the clone tool to remove the fence.
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This image was edited with

M&S The Roots Presets

Challenges & Solutions
Focusing was the hardest part of this whole image was our couple had just come from a very ‘motion-oriented’ moment and with the sun flaring right into our camera, we did find it struggled quite a bit.

Location

Beach / Coastal Germany

Sankt Peter-Ording

Sankt Peter-Ording, Germany

Final tips & Advice

When you have your couple do something that has a lot of movement, don’t stop shooting until they are completely done with it. You may just find sneaky little moments that happen right at the end that can be an absolute killer of a shot.

Another method of trying to focus while shooting into the sun is to block the sun temporarily with your hand, get your focus, and then remove your hand. It helps to practice this a bit though as it can be quite tricky.
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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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