How to capture unique and intriguing ring shots

 

Lately, I’ve been getting a lot of inquiries about my ring shots.  To be honest, this is one of my favourite parts about shooting weddings. Every couple has a different set of rings that represent their personalities and their love for each other.

Almost all of my ring shots are taken with my AF-S Micro Nikkor 105mm 2.8 and ALWAYS in manual focus. I cannot emphasize the importance of knowing how to focus your lens manually. If you aren’t comfortable doing this, practice with random objects around your house and don’t settle for anything less than a crystal clear, crisp image.  The crispness is beautiful and when I can capture that moment when it’s in focus, my heart melts.

If you are really struggling with focusing your lens, you may need to calibrate it. To be honest, I’ve been struggling lately to find the focus points, and am going to calibrate my lens when I have a chance. Wondering what I’m talking about?? http://photographylife.com/how-to-calibrate-lenses 

A huge part of photography is engaging in the world around you to capture the essence of what is happening. I don’t think there is a “right” or “wrong” way to capture ring shots, and I really don’t want you to just take up my methods, because you should find your own artistic way to express your art.

I’ll try to tell you a bit about the background behind the shots that I’ve taken and hopefully guide you towards your own ring inspiration.

How to capture unique and intriguing ring shots
Using your surroundings (Nikkor 105 mm, ISO 160 f/9 1/160)

This couple married under a big tent out in the country, and we were surrounded by a beautiful prairie landscape. It was a no-brainer to gather some of the wildflowers together. The sun is setting just behind and above this shot, creating a soft, yet bright glow.  I had to stand on a log to capture this shot.

How to capture unique and intriguing ring shots
Celebrating the couple’s heritage (ISO 1000, 50mm, f/3.5, 1/160)

The groom’s grandfather owns and rebuilt this beautiful Thunderbird, so the couple had the wonderful pleasure of riding around in it all day. The groom’s ring is actually a nut from his longboard.

How to capture unique and intriguing ring shots
Using Whatever you have around you (105mm, ISO 400, f/10, 1/125)

The couple from this wedding had their reception in a dark basement of a hotel.  We hadn’t had time to capture some ring shots while we were doing our formals outdoors, so I wasn’t sure what we were going to do.  But then I noticed the bartop. Shiny, glittery and PERFECT for a reflection shot of the ring.  I used my flash pointed upwards, off camera and remote triggered.  (There was a counter directly above for the flash to bounce back down on the ring)

How to capture unique and intriguing ring shots
Using Home Decor  (Sigma 150mm, ISO 400 f/3.8, 1/400)

This shot was taken at the bride’s home as she was getting ready. She has a beautifully decorated home, and works as an interior decorator. It seemed fitting that this gorgeous textured plate would be a perfect background for her even more gorgeous ring. This shot was taken in natural light, with the window to the right of the photo. This is one of the shots that took me a painstaking amount of time to capture, because of the amount of light being reflected, it was difficult to focus on the ring.

A couple of tips:

1) Close up that Aperture.
Even though the shots are macro, a smaller aperture, or a deeper depth of field is good to aim for when you are using a macro lens. Don’t worry, you’ll still capture that nice bokeh effect.   If the lens is wide open, you will have a harder time focusing on all of the intricate details of the rings.

 

2) Do anything for the shot 
Don’t care about what you look like while you are taking the photos. Sometimes we worry about what it’s going to look like while we lie on the floor, or underneath a tree. DON’T. If you are inspired, do it. Your bride will thank you for it.

3)Try something new
Inspiration can come in super weird forms. Once while I was capturing some detail shots, I noticed a cool soap dish in the bathroom.  Don’t stop yourself because something seems unconventional. (But if you are going to take ring shots in the bathroom, don’t forget to plug all the drains. That could be a really bad day otherwise)

Have any thoughts? Additional tips? Questions? I’d love to hear from you.

Let the wedding bells “ring!” 🙂

love ehjae

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