• Artificial Light
  • calm
  • Center Framed
  • Colorful
  • Colorful Light
  • Creative
  • Dark
  • holding each other
  • Indoor
  • Mid range
  • Minimalistic
  • Moody
  • Posed
  • Serious

The story behind the image

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Over the years we’ve been finding new ways to keep our work fresh while exploring new ideas. We’ve used natural light a great deal but we also wanted to explore artificial light in very low light, or dark, conditions, so we can give our couples an extra dynamic to their gallery. At the end of this particular elopement, we broke out one of our video lights and changed to the red color gel. We had it in our collective mind to do some sort of double or multiple exposures to make it a little trippy! Most of it was finished off in Photoshop which is where we decided to add the extra colors.
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Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

For the effect to work out, we asked the couple to engage with each other a little with their bodies, as well as keep a slight degree of separation. We also told them not to look at each other for that contemporary/pensive feel. We didn’t direct them on where to look, they just ended up doing that themselves which we really liked.

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What did you say?

Embrace each other but keep your heads apart, and don’t look at each other either. Being pensive and moddy will do the trick!

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Tone of Directions



We’ve always been fans of negative space, so decided to go with that idea once again. With it being dark too, this allowed us to make the couple pop out with the use of color and keep the focus solely on them.

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Center Framed


Describe how you spoke to your subject(s)

We picked the focus on the middle of the couple’s faces. We had lost all ambient light by this time, so we used our video light to illuminate them. As it was pitch black and using red light, we had to increase our ISO up a tad to allow us to get enough shutter speed for the shot.

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Focus Mode

Single Shot Autofocus

Focus POints

Single Point

Focused on

Their faces

Equipment &

Canon 5D Mark III
Canon 35mm f/1.4 L
1/100 @ f/2.0 ISO4000 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

We decided to shake things up and shoot in the dark using a standard video light to illuminate the couple. We had to increase our ISO up quite a bit so we could get everything in focus. We went with red to neutralize the tones, making the editing process easier in Photoshop when creating the effect.

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Light Type

Artificial Light



Editing Workflow

How did you edit this image?

We initially used our own preset in ACR to get the tones right. We then used Photoshop for the main part of the edit. After duplicating the layers we changed the hue of the other two layers (one to green and the other to blue) then changed the opacity so the layers would slightly blend into each other, creating a staggered RGB/3D effect.

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Editing Software
Adobe Camera Raw
Preset Used
Custom preset


Shooting in the dark is always a challenge, especially when we try to use natural light 99% of the time during a session.

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We are constantly trying to think outside of the box and this instance was perfect to be creative. Hence the use of the video light and color gel. We also used Photoshop a bit more than we would usually do, so we could get the desired effect we were aiming for and make it more exciting and jazzed up!

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Location Name

Malibu, California

Location aDDRESS

35000 Pacific Coast Hwy, Malibu, CA 90265

Loation Type

Beach / Coastal


United States

We learned that Photoshop is a great tool to make images even more exciting, and although we won’t use it a lot, we know it’s there for that extra pizazz if we ever need it!

We also want to try out some more of these multiple exposures and use different colors next time…maybe jazz up the background. Who knows!

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