Photographed by Melli & Shayne


This was a wedding that we were both actually quite nervous about. Not that we felt unprepared or ill-equipped or anything; it was one of the first times we were going to be shooting a wedding styled by a stylist that we really admired. It was going to be the first time we met in person and, then, try and capture the wedding & her work justifiably.

As the day started and we were beginning to get the details set up for their shots, we met the stylist and had a great conversation and first impression. We started to play with a few layouts for the stationary and she suggested bringing in a bit of ribbon to “tie it all together”. We LOVED the idea and were pretty stoked with how it came out.

Ever since then, we’ve given a lot more thought to the detail shots from the wedding and we try and find ways to make the overall compositions balance and feel “complete”.
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Center FramedClose UpSymmetry

We wanted to go in tighter for this image as we wanted the name cards to take center attention, while also filling the rest of the space with the surrounding ribbons. This creates a feeling of closeness, and completeness to this image as there isn’t much negative space left. We finally decided to keep the portrait-orientated version since this seemed to balance a lot better than the landscape version.
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When moving in close, try and fill the frame with your subjects. Even if some parts get cut off – so long as it looks intentional, it’ll work. Alternatively, shoot a tad wider than what you envision and refine the crop when you’re editing later on.


Single Point Focused on The letters on the name cards Single Shot Autofocus
Focusing was very straight forward as we had plenty of light & contrasts to lock on to. We simply moved our single focus point over the lettering of the names and let the camera lock on.
Light & Weather

Soft LightNatural LightShade

When setting up the details, we found a shaded part of the courtyard of the castle. The sun was pretty harsh at this time and so in order to get that beautiful soft light, shade was our best option. Since we were in the shade, we didn’t really mind too much where the sun was in relation to us since the directional light was so soft that it didn’t cause any problems.
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Equipment & EXIF

1/640 f/2 ISO 640 WB Auto


Canon 5D Mark III


Canon 50mm f/1.2 L


Adobe Lightroom Classic M&S The Roots Presets

Software used:


For this wedding project, we based all our edits on our Marula presets which aren’t super heavy or manipulative. We applied the base preset and adjusted the exposures and contrasts slightly to get the tones we were after. We then refined the crop slightly to find one that made the overall image balance with its composition.
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This image was edited with

M&S The Roots Presets

Challenges & Solutions
The challenge was getting the ribbon to sit naturally and not look posed or messy. Especially since this was one of the first times we did this.


Castle Italy


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

Final tips & Advice

When it comes to the details, try and incorporate other details from the wedding into your stationary shots. Little things like the ribbon from the bouquet (extra pieces of it), flowers from the venue or even some from the bouquet (be careful!). Those little things can make a pretty flat-looking stationary shot feel more alive and meaningful.
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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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