One of my absolute favorite shots to capture at a wedding is the detail shot of the rings. Many of our photographer friends we work with think I’m crazy (they hate posing rings), but it’s one of my favorites. It amazes me every time we shoot a wedding how different and unique each couples’ rings are. There can be so much personality communicated in the style and texture of the rings.
One of the reasons this shot is one of my favorites is that it requires using an awesome lens. To get these close-up shots, we use a Canon 100mm f2.8L macro lens that has crazy shallow focusing capabilities. As you can see in some of these photos, I can focus on the front of these tiny rings and the back is blurry. I think I spend at least a couple minutes each time checking and rechecking the focus to make sure I’m getting it right. I love being able to shoot so close and make the rings look so big because it gives the viewer a unique perspective on these tiny symbols. Unless you’re the bride or groom, chances are you’ll never get a close-up look at the rings, so it’s a joy to be able to share the intricate beauty of what the couple has chosen as a symbol of their love and marriage.
When I select where I’m going to shoot the rings, I usually have two requirements. First, I want somewhere with a lot of light. It doesn’t take a PhD to realize that diamonds look WAY more awesome when light comes dazzling through. There have been several times when Holly and I are flying somewhere that light streams in the airplane window, hits Holly’s ring, and sends these beautiful sparkles all over the walls and surrounding seats. You can see it in the car too, but there’s something about the confined space of an airplane that really seems to bring out the dazzle.
My second requirement when selecting where to shoot the rings is a location that has meaning and context to the wedding day. I don’t just want to shoot them on a table because the table looks good. I want it to have context for where the wedding day took place. Usually this means selecting a location that shows the style or gives a nod to the ceremony or reception site. In the case of Jessica & Daniel’s rings, which are the rings in the first image in this post, I used a small end table on the balcony of their hotel room.
All of these reasons add up to explain why the ring shot is one of my favorites. More than anything, it allows us to capture a unique piece of who the couple is and highlights their style. It fits into the greater picture and purpose of Your Day, which is to tell your story.