There is really no part of photography I don’t love, especially wedding photography. I’ve talked about it a little before and the number of disciplines you need to master to do it really well. You need photojournalism skills, fashion photography skills, people skills and macro skills. And mastering them takes time. I’m comfortable in most of them but if I was honest, macro was probably not my favorite. I like people, so taking photos of flowers and rings and stuff was maybe not my favorite part. But I’ve been doing my homework. It’s important and now I’m really starting to see the joy in it.
So in this blog post, I wanted to offer a few tips on how to produce some of the trickier shots at weddings, the ring shots. They’re important. Don’t kid yourself into thinking as long as you have a shot of them, it’s good enough. They are as important as every other moment you capture, so treat them that way.
So how do you get good ones?
1. Get a macro lens. I hate to just tell you buy an expensive piece of equipment but you need one to really do them right. In the absense of one, use your fastest lens and open the aperture as wide as possbile. A shallow depth of field is often what puts the focus on the rings and not something else.
2. Clarity. Make sure the image or section of the ring that you want to be sharp is uncompromisingly sharp. It’s not always easy with a macro lens and it can be tough to trust the LCD on your camera. Do whatever you need to steady the camera and nail the focus.
3. Light, light, light. Nail the lighting. As a general rule of thumb, use sidelight to give your shots texture, but use whatever you have available to you and get creative. A great place to start for those just getting going in their photography is put the rings on a window sill and let them bathe on the glow of window light.
The shots below were lit with an Ice Light, which is designed by photographer Jerry Ghi0nis. It’s got a ton of uses but I get he most out of it when shooting details. It mimics window light and really does a good job.
So here are just a couple examples of some of the ring shots I got a little while back at Bobby and Alicia’s spectacular wedding.