Turning challenges into an opportunity to make beautiful images.
This past October, Phoebe and Eugene were wed at Malibu Rocky Oaks Estate Vineyard. It's a very unique wedding venue, nestled on a hilly landscape in Malibu, California. They wanted a photographer who could show the beauty of the natural landscape on their wedding day. We photographed them before their ceremony in the afternoon, around 3 pm, on a hot, 90-degree day. We arrived about an hour before the ceremony to scout the location. There were a few backdrops to choose from, including an in nity pool, which we couldn't make use of without getting the couple wet, and a vineyard that was too small to host a shoot for the couple, four groomsmen
and four bridesmaids. We ended up choosing the top of a grassy hill, right behind the ceremony site. This image is about the rst impression of the wedding, and this location captured the signature of the venue.
But with the hill came its challenges. With no shade cover, the light was harsh and the sun hot. We had to nish the shoot fast before skin burned and makeup melted. We chose to shoot against the strong, direct sunlight, so Phoebe and Eugene could open their eyes comfortably.
We knew our powerful sidekick, the Profoto B2 off-camera flash, would be able to balance the sun, and opted for a single ash with a Profoto OCF 2x3 Softbox for an nice, even light. My assistant held the B2 at about 45 degrees to our right, and we took a manual exposure at ISO 200, f/14 and 1/250 of a second. Using the strobe as a ll light, it was powerful enough to balance the sunlight without overpowering it, keeping the scene soft-lit and romantic.
Our clients are knowledgable about photography; they care about it and are willing to spend a big portion of their total wedding budget on the photographer. So on the wedding day, it's our job to make sure they have the pictures that can't be achieved through mobile photography and natural light alone. On the wedding day, we work hard to achieve some glamour-style fine-art portraits, and at the same time, all of the candid moments in an artistic way. We are not settled on a fixed style, and hope to keep trying new styles to stay fresh and always passionate about photography.