the Shoot

Location Equipment
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As we are a team that does both photos and films, recording the vows is something that we always try and do. Most of the time we set up a little mic on the groom’s jacket and let it record throughout the ceremony, but since we were outdoors and there was quite a bit of noise – we wanted to make extra sure we had a decent “copy” of the vows.
So, when we took our couple for their couple shoot, we asked them to bring their vows with them. It was another incredibly beautiful and emotional moment that they shared together. They got to re-read their vows and really listen to it, word for word. Needless to say, we photographed the heck out of it.

Finally, one thing we always do is to try and focus in on details. We look for those little gestures that happen; the hands being held, the tears, the kisses. We really try and show the viewers all parts of this moment and not just the obvious ones.
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Location Name

Faber-Castell Waldhütte

Location aDDRESS

Faber-Castell Waldhütte Faberhof 1, 90596 Schwanstetten



Location TYPE




Canon 5D mark IV




Canon 35mm f/1.4 L II

Lens Filter


Other Equipment
No additional equipment was used.

the Shoot

Directions Composition Focus Light & Exposure
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Calm Holding Hands Natural


Even though we didn’t direct our couple into anything, we did ask them to stand close to each other and to always make contact. We reminded them to try their best to focus on each other, and less on us moving around them.

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What was said

Guys, when you read your vows, stand nice and close to each other and see if you can make contact. Have your hands hold his and just, for this moment, forget everything around you and just listen to him 100%. We’ll do our best to blend in the background

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Why I composed the way I did

Framing this shot was all about placing their “gesture” right in the middle of the image. This is where most of the impact lies in images where there aren’t that many compositional elements such as leading lines and points of interest. We also shot this from our head height, tilted downwards so we could capture both pairs of hands a lot clearer.

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Rule of Thirds Center Framed Mid Range


Focus mode

Single focus point, automatic

Focus Technology

Single Shot Autofocus

Focused on

Hands & Letter

Focus description

Since we had our camera right up to our face, it was easiest to just shoot through the viewfinder move our single focus point over the hands of our couple. We do this because it’s a lot more reliable and accurate when looking for something to focus on.

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Shutter Speed






White Balance


Other Light Sources
No additional light sources were used.
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Light &

How the light was used

This was taken pretty late into the sunset which also happened to be just behind some really big storm clouds. This was moments before the rain started to fall. Since the sun was being blocked by these clouds and it’s warm tones amplified by it at the same time, we didn’t need to worry too much about how we positioned our couple as the light all round was really soft and pretty.

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Soft Light Moody Natural Light Stormy

the Shoot

Editing & Presets
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Editing &

Editing Software used

Adobe Lightroom Classic

Preset Used
How I edited this image

When it came to editing this shot, we first cropped it into the position that we thought balanced it all without strange parts of our couple peeking in. We then applied our base preset (Protea) and increased the white balanced almost all the way to its highest setting. We then did the usual exposure tweaks (highlights, shadows, contrast, saturation, vibrance, etc…) until we liked the results.

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Challenges Solutions Advice

Challenges & Solutions

Events that were challenging during the shoot

The main challenge here was finding a composition that didn’t cut off our couple in weird spots. It’s quite easy to overlook the edges of the frame only to get back and realize half a nose is in there.

Solutions I found

We shot a bit wider than what we originally intended to do since we knew we could fine-tune the crop when editing later on. It’s always a safer bet to shoot a tad wider so you have a bit of room to play with later on.


Having your couple bring their vows with them to a couple of shoots is an absolute gem. Even if they read them to each other in the ceremony, there is just something so special when they’re alone, quiet, and can really listen & enjoy that moment together. As photographers looking to capture authentic emotions – this often is a jackpot moment.

If you want to offer something a bit more special for the slideshows you create (if you don’t do videos), you could invest in a lavalier mic (the one used here connects to an iPhone, and was around 50$), record their vows and then add that as a track in their slideshow.
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Photographed by

Melli & Shayne

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