Bride and Groom | Fran & Chris
date of edit | 08.16.2013
location | ventura, ca
las vegas wedding photographer | john afravi
When I photograph a wedding, I strive to get at least one shot that can be thrown on a large print and plastered on my client’s wall! Whether it is canvas, metal, acrylic…I strive to create a piece of art that they can hang up in their home to remember their important wedding day! In this short tutorial I go through what I did to create this final product.
The photo above is the final piece. I took an otherwise ordinary photo and created a composite of multiple photos. Your end product literally has to be conceived right before the moment you shoot the photograph. You need to be able to think up the final product BEFORE you take the shot. You need to be able to look at everything as a whole, and ask yourself if the end product will be something that you can print and hang on your wall.
You literally have seconds to rally your brain cells, go over the scene in your head, create the idea from within, and execute the idea. Throw in the insane timeline of a wedding day, and you have yourself something that is near impossible!! We planned on having 45 minutes to shoot after the wedding for creative portraits, but of course a wedding day never goes as planned. It’s expected. You just need to be able to work with what you’re given and try to shine!
I literally was given 5 minutes to shoot this photograph. The bride and groom were way behind schedule and were cutting into cocktail hour at the reception which was located at Sterling Hills Golf Club. ……we were at Ventura Beach, CA where the ceremony was held. This was about 20 minutes from the reception. Cocktail hour is an hour. We were cutting into cocktail hour. Naturally, the bride and groom are getting a bit irritated. I mean, who wouldn’t? It’s time to party!!
We run out to the shoreline. I’m running with my Canon 5D Mark II on one side, and my Canon 5D Mark III on the other, carrying a lightstand with an Einstein studio strobe with a Kacey Beauty Dish attached to it. Being in shape for this job is a must! HAH!
So I setup, take a few test shots, adjust my exposure and strobe settings quickly and snap off a few photos with different poses of the bride and groom. This is the shot that I originally came away with. Of course there were some tweaks in lightroom to the color settings and exposure to get this look, but the overall photo is how it came out of the camera.
As you can see I had my light source right in the photo. For a shot this wide, it’s a must. If I had the strobe out of frame the couple would be hit with harsh light. I tried to get the light nice and soft, but I also needed it to engulf them. I had to compromise distance and softness to get them covered in the light from head to toe.
I took this photo into photoshop, and added in the sky. I did some tweaks to the sky to make it realistic and to flow with the rest of the image. All in all it took me about an hour to complete this photo.
The composition isn’t perfect. I would have preferred to move the couple over to the right so they wouldn’t have disappeared into the rocks behind them. If I had some more time I would have placed a flash behind them to create some rim light to separate them from the background. All of that is hearsay though as you really don’t have time to think, it needs to become second nature. I’ll remember next time though.
Any questions on this short tutorial of my composite or for anything else, please click the “contact us” link at the top of the page or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org. Also, check out our work at www.digitalmacdaddy.com or like us on Facebook at Digital Macdaddy’s Wedding Photography Facebook Page Thanks!
Digital Macdaddy Photography is not your typical photography company. We are a team of dynamic photographers based in Las Vegas. We specialize in meshing the art of photography with the surreal nature of composites. This allows us to create digital art that just teeters on the line of both realism and fantasy.
From there we then take it a step further. We provide prints on high quality mediums. Metal, Acrylic, Framed Canvas. This is possible. Need a print at 96 inches on the long end? We can definitely do that! Feel free to contact us with your inquiries and we will do our best to accommodate you!