• Candles
  • Center Framed
  • dinner set up
  • Indoor
  • lower thirds
  • Mid range
  • Soft Light
  • Table
  • table design
  • Table Setting

The story behind the image

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We had a busy day in front of us and with only the two of us documenting both, photo & film, we had to be well organized to get the shots we wanted. Having had a wonderful wedding planner on board helped plan out the day in terms of photos.

We knew that in the afternoon when we had scheduled the detailed shots of the untouched dinner setting, we wouldn’t have the best light in the room the dinner was set up.

We therefore kindly asked the wedding planner to light the candles for us at that specific time which did help the atmosphere in the photos as well as allow for a more interesting composition. Teaming with the other vendors to get this all done on time was a key factor and so worth it.
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For this composition, we purposely chose to leave quite a bit of breathing room above the table to show more of the space the table setting was in, as well as the wallpaper that was meaningful to the owners of the venue. We lowered ourselves until just above candle height and tried to find compositions where we could shoot through things to add a bit more depth to the scene.

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Lower Thirds


Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

Since we were aiming to shoot through something, we had to be in complete control over what was being focused on. Therefore, we used our single point focus mode and placed it over the candles. Since the rest of the table was simply below the candles, they too fell in focus.

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Focus Mode

Single Shot Autofocus

Focus POints

Single Point

Focused on


Equipment &

Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 85mm f/1.2 L
1/250 @ f/2 ISO500 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

The main light source was coming just off to the left of the frame from a big, open window. The room itself was quite dark and fortunately, this table was placed right where it caught the light. This lowly lit room also worked to our advantage as having the candles on meant we could capture a much prettier scene.

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Light Type




Editing Workflow

How did you edit this image?

We had to pay careful attention to the editing of this shot as the blues were very easily affected by our preset. We chose to use our Marula presets since they aren’t very harsh and could handle this situation a bit easier. That being said, once applied and tweaked to get the exposure right, we used a gradient adjustment on the top half to fix the discoloration of the blues as well as a manual vignette with a radial adjustment.

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Editing Software
Adobe Lightroom Classic
Preset Used


The main challenge we faced here was keeping the blues closer to reality than to art. Our presets do shift the blue quite a bit and since we wanted to create an image that our couple would love but also the venue, we had to pay attention to the tones.

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It helps to spend a little bit more time than usual on things that you know are going to be worth it. Especially if it’s shots of places that you won’t shoot at again – giving them your images to market with is invaluable so long as they tag/reference you as the photographer.

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Location Name

Schloss Freudenstein

Location aDDRESS

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

Loation Type




Capturing the details of the wedding day is not only important for the couple since they very likely spent a lot of time choosing, planning, and building them, but it’s important for vendors too. Being able to share some of your images of their work with them means they basically do free advertising for you. Just make sure that they agree to tag you / reference you as the photographer.

If you can, try and time photographing the dinner set up when the sun has dropped to keep the light levels relatively low. Then, light the candles. It really makes for a much more interesting image and the bokeh alone can even elevate the shot.

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