Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe Wedding Beach Shot
Photography by Calin
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Photography by Calin

Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe Wedding Beach Shot

This is one of my favourite photographs from a pre-wedding photo shoot I have done in Mexico. The day before Katharina and Taylor's a went Barcelo Maya Palace Deluxe wedding, we went to Tulum to photograph a pre-wedding session.

After an unfortunate turn of events where we were denied access to the Tulum ruins, we found a secluded beach just perfect for our short photo shoot.

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For this image, reminiscent of the picture above, I asked Katharina to dance and shuffle her white dress in the foreground. Meanwhile, I gave Taylor (located in the middle ground in this shot) one of my cameras to pretend that his photographing his fiancée. As we were shooting around 1 PM on Riviera Maya, the sun was extremely harsh. As a Toronto wedding photographer, I rarely have the luxury of choosing the time when I can photograph. Usually, it is the other way around. I am given a time slot and I have to make it work. As such, I learned that in this kind of light the best solution is to photograph environmental portraits and avoid close-ups.

To capture this image I jumped on my belly and shot from the beach level upwards. On the left side of the frame in the foreground we can see Katharina's legs while her fiancé is placed on the right along perfect diagonal, which gives this picture dynamism. Katharina's legs and dress perfectly frame Taylor creating a stunning picture. Both Katarina's legs and Taylor are along the rule of thirds the vertical guidelines. Which gives this picture a balanced nature. Through the layering of foreground, middle ground and background I created a three dimensional image. Also, according to the Gestalt principle of closure, the fact that we cannot see Katarina's face creates mystery and takes this pre-wedding picture to the next level.

I used a Canon 35mm 1.4 lens mounted on a five the Mark three camera shot at f11 so that everything is in focus. In the background, we can see the ocean and on the left side of the frame the famous Tulum Mayan ruins. For this particular image I chose a portrait framing. The wide angle lenses are known to distort the image. In this photograph I used distortion to my advantage to lengthen my subjects beautiful legs. 

Doing a beach pre-wedding photo shoot is not for the faint of heart. When the wind starts blowing, all the fine sand enters into your camera and lens. That is one of the reasons I use only prime lenses for beach weddings. Prime lenses are known to be more resistant to dust and humidity.

In post processing I applied some basic skin softening then enhanced the texture of the sky and the rocks in the background. The most time-consuming part of the post processing phase was to add pieces of dress to cover the bride's legs.

This creative image evokes a sense of calm, relaxation. The blue of the sky and the ocean symbolizes trust, faith and stability. Meanwhile, the white suggests purity, perfection, sincerity, very appropriate symbols for a marriage.

Location: Carretera federal Chetumal – Cancún km. 230, Tulum, Q.R., Mexico.

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