We just realized that we never posted the rest of the portraits from the Justin & Krystle, “How we shot it” Portrait session. Since its probably a bit late to post to our wedding blog, we are going to post the rest here and talk loosely about the variation in the shots. Just to note, this session was done at the end of a morning wedding so everything important that had to take place on the wedding day, had essentially already taken place. It was just the bride, groom, the driver of their car and us. Also take note that since we shot this session, Chad’s Church has officially be restricted for all photography, there’s a sign on the front of the building in bright yellow and black saying “NO TRESPASSING”. Coincidentally, even if that sign was there on the day of this wedding, it would not have affected us because we didn’t use the front the building.

HOW TO READ THIS POST: Explanation and details for each photograph is ABOVE it.

This was at the beginning of the session just around 20 images in, we had already taken the “formal” formals and were heading into a more relaxed part of the session.
Image Info
Number of lights: 1
Light Modifier:  Shoot through Umbrella
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f3.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 125justinkrystle-39

We just decided after getting the first set of shots to switch locations. We always look for naturally occurring frames and I find that flora and in this case the hanging leaves and branches of the mango tree, served well in framing and isolating Justin and Krystle. I think as Ayinde was moving the light as this was happening so this particular image is unlit (except for the sun) and it works well.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f3.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 125 justinkrystle-41

We continued using the branches and leaves as a frame and included a bare bulb speed-light. Usually I prefer that whatever is framing the image be darker than the subject, working on the principle that you eyes are guided to the light or the lighter part of the photograph however, because of limited time, I was unable to set this up exactly the way I wanted. You can see the light from the flash casting shadows on Justin’s head as it comes through the leaves. .
Image Info

Number of lights: 1
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f3.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 125 justinkrystle-44

While I was backing off for a wider shot (I kept using the 85mm prime) Justin picked up Krystle and began to spin her a bit so the first shot I got was this one.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 80
justinkrystle-46

Usually, a shot like this one, I would probably just dump right off the bat because foreground is not sharp enough to give the strongest contrast between the shoe and the rest of the image however, it has such potential as an “in the moment image” I kept it. If I had a different lens mounted, say a 35mm and a faster shutter speed that would have allowed for sharper capture, this image may have been the one I loved the most.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 80
justinkrystle-42

Ah! Now they turn right into the shot and BOOM, there’s the timing and expression we are looking for. A good result, considering there was no time to change lenses or include any additional light.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 80 justinkrystle-47

We often like to do contrasting expression shots as departure from the highly candid feel of our sessions. Its kind of a visual variance that keeps interest going. In addition this allows us to place couples in environments and create frames around them, like we did with the window in this one. Serious version…
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-48

…happy version.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-49

A big part of effectively shooting a wedding portrait session is minimizing distractions and the couple getting comfortable with each other in a public space. If you’re doing it right, the atmosphere will get more and more relaxed and couple will get less and less distracted and more and more intimate. Its important to just leave the couple alone for a bit sometimes with no instruction and nothing to do but pay attention to each other. At this point they often fall into interaction that can never be set up or posed. This is what is happening in this next series of images. Yes we did put them in the frame of the windows and yes we did tell them to pay attention to each other but after that, we just backed off and because the session is evolving into an atmosphere of reduced distraction, comfort and intimacy, if you are attentive, you can get nuances of interaction that show friendship and love better than the cliche of a hug or kiss. For instance, Krystle smiles and touches her necklace…
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250justinkrystle-50

…then she touches Justin’s face. Can’t predict that, now can you.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250justinkrystle-51

This image focuses on an interesting foreground element while keeping the Justin and Krystle clearly in the frame. Even though they are not in focus, they still remain a powerful subject in the photographs because while you can’t see the detail of their faces, you can discern expression and there is no doubt as to what they are feeling.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250justinkrystle-52

They were comfortable enough to do a bit of tinkering with each others accessories.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250justinkrystle-54

When we see that the couple have connected to each other strongly in the position we’ve originally placed them, we don’t interrupt unless its absolutely necessary. Sometimes we even sacrifice technical perfection for the “moment”. In this case because the window post in the middle of the image, was now becoming a hindrance to powerful interaction photographs, we had the choice of either moving to a better angle of capture or moving Justin and Krystle altogether. We couldn’t get the necessary angle to maximize the window frame but we felt confident that there was not going to be any interaction fall-off, if we moved J & K to our left a bit more, into just the frame of the first window. Based on the images we got subsequent to the move I’d say we were right.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-55

Same set up, wider view, manually zoomed (I walked backwards). By now you’re realizing that I really like the 85mm. This is one of the shots we used in the first “How we shot this” post of this wedding.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f7.1
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-56

By the time we got around to this time in the shoot, both Ayinde and I were shooting. He opted to go wide with his 24-70mm 2.8 in portrait orientation, while I kept the 85mm for a bit longer.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 24-70mm 2.8
Aperture: f10
Shutter: 1/200
ISO: 200
justinkrystle-57

Going even wider with the 85mm. Great interaction here.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f7.1
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-58

There would have been no way, we could taken such a clear shot of Justin & Krystle with the sun behind them, if we were out in the open because our flashes are just not powerful enough to overpower the sunlight at that time of day but since they were in an enclosed room and not directly back lit, we could shoot directly into the sun with out adversely affecting how they came out in the shot. So we did a few wide shots, shooting into the sun like this one…
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 24-70mm 2.8
Aperture: f10
Shutter: 1/200
ISO: 200 justinkrystle-62

…and this. This one was shot at a lower angle so lens flare is reduced, which allows us to see Justin and Krystle a bit clearer. In addition, we like to go wide to give a sense of environment and the macro context of the shot. We often look for shots that allow us to compose very wide, while still keeping clear context.
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 24-70mm 2.8
Aperture: f10
Shutter: 1/200
ISO: 200 justinkrystle-60

We spoke about this one on the original post
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f7.1
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250
justinkrystle-63

Getting a bit lower angle and working the back lit walls and leaves. 
Image Info

Number of lights: 2
Light Modifier:  A wall
Lens: 24-70mm 2.8
Aperture: f10
Shutter: 1/200
ISO: 200justinkrystle-67

After going big, we often like to bring it back into personal space and get some more details and closely framed interaction shots. If the previous series of photographs went well, by the time you get back to this point, the couple is strongly connected, engaged with each other and ignoring the camera for the most part so you can move them around without much disruption. Just be careful, different couples have different thresholds of concentration when it comes to keeping the connection going during a shoot so have some idea of what you want them to do next, before interrupting the connection. For this shot we just moved Justin & Krystle to the doorway of the building where we could get some natural light, for a different feel. I can’t remember if we told them what to do and it’s more than likely we didn’t but then again we didn’t have to. The next series of images were taken in under 40 seconds. They flowed from this…
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f3.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-68

…To this…
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f3.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-70

…To this… (We reduced the aperture size at this point, the previous photograph was a bit overexposed. Of course you can’t see this in the edited version)
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f4.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250
justinkrystle-71

…To this… ( I chose to break my flow with some suit detail, these are quick easy high value shots you can include anytime)
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f4.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-72

…To this. I love that we can see both rings in this photograph.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f4.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-73

You can see the deliberate position change here, with Krystle moved in front of Justin. You will also note, that their eyes are closed. We don’t ever tell couples to close their eyes, this is generally a natural response to feeling comfortable and connected.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f4.5
Shutter: 1/160
ISO: 250justinkrystle-74

Finally, the high contrast, high detail ring shot. We only went for this because of the way the natural light created it, Justin was already holding Krystle’s veil because we were about to leave.
Image Info

Number of lights: 0
Light Modifier:  none
Lens: 85mm 1.8
Aperture: f5.6
Shutter: 1/640
ISO: 250 justinkrystle-76

Hope this helps.

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