Married in the Field of Dreams

No, really!

During the Memorial Day weekend, I photographed the wedding of Elizabeth and Andrew Myers at an outdoor area owned by the Middlesettlements UMC called . . . the Field of Dreams!  WHat a great name for a place to get married!

But I wanted to do a special image for them that would take in the beautiful rolling hills around this area.  I wanted to showcase them but still capture the expanse of land around them.  Well, the second part could be done with a wide-angle lens, but then the new Mr. and Mrs. Myers would be tiny in the image.

Fortunately, there is a technique that has been popularized by noted photographer Ryan Brenizer; commonly referred to as "the Brenizer Method," it involves taking a series of images of the couple and around the couple using a shallow depth of field, and then using Photoshop to stitch them all together.

And this is what you get:

The image above took more than 50 separate images to make.

Does it take extra time?  Sure.  When I first saw an example, did I have to learn how to do it?  Yeah.  But . . . it's the Field of Dreams, and a little more effort for my clients is worth it when it makes their wedding pictures special.


Trying out the Brenizer Method

Once upon a time, a photographer by the name of Ryan Brenizer was vacationing in Ireland when he came upon an old graveyard.  In his mind's eye, he wanted to create a picture where he could get a shallow depth of field and the look of a lens with a long focal length while still creating a wide angle picture.

In short, he wanted to do something no one lens could do.  

So he popularized a method by which he would take a good number of the long focal length. shallow depth of field images and stitch them together to make a panorama or an image that it looks as if it had been taken with what is called a medium format camra.

And I think it's a cool effect.  So I tried it for myself, using two reluctant teens - my son and my daughter's boyfriend.

For you photo geeks who loves them some EXIF:  ISO 400; f/3.2. 170mm

The picture of my son above is made up of 61 individual shots.  The image of my daughter's boyfriend below is made up of 63 individual shots.  And it is all "assembled" in Photoshop.

Again with the EXIF: ISO 640; f/3.2, 100mm macro lens

I could see this adding another dimension to bridal portraits, especially when the couple is in a setting where there is a lot of depth to a picture - say, on a path stretching past a row of trees, but not a textured wall because you want to have elements in the foreground and at stages from front to back.

It doesn't work for every picture, but it is a new item for my bag of tricks!

Because why just press the shutter button?