• bouquet
  • Outdoor
  • wind in hair
  • warm toned
  • Sunset
  • Stormy
  • South Africa
  • Smiling
  • Natural
  • Bridal Portrait
  • Mountains
  • Moody
  • Mid range
  • looking passed
  • Laughing
  • Fun
  • Dark
  • windy

The story behind the image

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A golden rule that we tend to follow is to never really put down our cameras. At least, we’re always ready, even when we’re not “shooting”. This picture was taken just as we were talking to the Groom and we must have said something pretty funny as our bride just burst out into laughter.

It was right then and there that we turned back towards our bride and mid-rotation raised our camera up to capture it. We knew when we did this that we may not actually get a shot worth keeping – but it was just instinct and we went for it.

When we realized just how awesome this moment was, we fixated on it and kept her in the flow before letting the moment naturally soften and we could return to what we were doing before.
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We framed our bride within the mountain in the background as to not let any of the lines cut through her. It just feels a lot more flattering and easy to look at when that happens. The mountain also creates a natural frame around our bride which helps to bring more attention to her.

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Center Framed


Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

Since this was a fast, unprepared shot – we had our focus point pre-set into the middle of the frame and raised slightly. We didn’t have time to move it around the frame so what we did was move the whole camera until the point was over the bride’s face, focus, and then recompose slightly 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 35mm f/1.4 L II
1/1000 @ f/1.4 ISO100 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

At this point of the day, the sun was just about to drop below the horizon off to the right side of the image. Because of this, we had this stunning golden directional light which created these beautiful highlights on our bride.

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Light Type

Natural Light

Time of day




Editing Workflow

How did you edit this image?

To edit this shot, we applied our Protea Preset as a base and did the usual warming up with the white balance and tweaking the exposure sliders to get the overall tone of the image to where we wanted it.

Since the sun was powering through with a strong golden light, we needed to reduce the saturation of the oranges and reds to help keep the color palette less saturated and more muted.

We then added in a slight sun enhancing radial filter to the side as well as a manual vignette to bring attention towards our bride. We finished off with a fine layer of Grain and cleaned up a few areas with the healing brush.

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Editing Software
Adobe Lightroom Classic


The biggest challenge we had here was toning down those saturated oranges and reds while editing as they completely blew out with color.

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We spent a bit more time in the HSL panel reducing saturations and luminance of the warm tones while also adjusting the tone curve very slightly.

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Location Name

Signal Hill

Location aDDRESS

Signal Hill, Cape Town, South Africa

Loation Type



South Africa

One of the best pieces of advice we can give is to always be ready with your camera. It doesn’t matter if you’re not “shooting”, you should be ready and fast enough to just whip up your camera and take that shot. Moments can happen in the blink of an eye and most of the time, they happen when we’re not at our most aware.

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