Stephan Debelle  

Yuriko & Ken Tahitian Wedding by Stephan Debelle

November 2019 - Yuriko & Ken Tahitian Wedding

About the Image(s)

This is a photo of clients Yuriko and Ken from Japan and having a traditional Tahitian Ceremony- Here the Tahua (Tahitian Master of Ceremony) blessing Ken. They chose to also wear traditional costumes which was nice.

ISO 200 - 55mm - f5.6 1/320 sec I was probably using a polarizing filter, photo taken late morning.

This round’s discussion is now closed!
10 comments posted

Bob Legg   Bob Legg
Great color, composition and catching the moment of this ceremony. I would work on reducing the hi lights on the upper part of the brides face and opening the shadows on the left side of "Kens" face. I would not use a polarizer at all on this scene as it probably did not do anything except reduce your light which could of been used to increase your F-stop. Good news is that it can all be fixed in post processing as you captured the moment beautifully.   Posted: 11/10/2019 10:25:08

Karen Harris   Karen Harris
What a beautiful moment!! The colors are fabulous. I would have liked it to have more space at the top showing all of the yellow headress and also moving the horizon from dead center in the image.   Posted: 11/12/2019 11:24:55

Tam Phan   Tam Phan
A nice picture and sharp.Thanks for a traditional ceremony.   Posted: 11/14/2019 17:45:28

Bob Wills   Bob Wills
Beautiful color shot, crisp and clear An overcast day probably doesn't exist on Bora, so shadows will always plague local images. I guess the only suggestion I have would be to select the background if you have PS CC 2020, and add a Gaussian blur to make the subjects stand out more. Nice clouds, and the fronds on the lower right help lead into the blessing, and whatever the fronds are that curve from the Tahua's arm to Ken's head. Have you tried to flip horizontally?   Posted: 11/17/2019 11:24:08

Stephan Debelle   Stephan Debelle
Thank you for all the feedback. The ceremony was taking place mid day and thus we had a harsh light with many shadows, I did soften them up during PP. We do have many overcast days, these are the worst as the white light is amplified by the lagoon. The Tahua is holding a Oti, a sacred plant which is used during the blessing and one of 5 symbols of a Tahitian ceremony. I have not tried to flip it, I often don't think about doing this but that is a good point:-) . @Karen, yes may be I could have angled lower to have the horizon at a different spot and capture the top of the crown on the Tahua. These ceremonies usually last 15 mins, the light and heat is sometime intense on the beach and makes it challenging to get everything right:-)   Posted: 11/17/2019 17:26:30

Judy Burr   Judy Burr
Thanks for your explanation of the ceremony. The colors are great and this would be a good travel image as they are not judged as harshly for technical issues. I agree that it would be nice to see more of the fronds at the top. Fill flash may have helped, but I never mastered that, but have seen results that look good.   Posted: 11/19/2019 13:58:26

Bill Foy   Bill Foy
The composition and colors are really good. I agree with Judy about adding a fill flash to brighten up the couple.   Posted: 11/22/2019 12:36:21
Stephan Debelle   Stephan Debelle

I rarely use a fill flash, personally I enjoy moderate shadows as I think it is more natural and give the image character. Our light during ceremonies can change rapidly, when we deal with passing clouds / quick changes I sometime shoot in AV mode as it is more important for me to not miss expression and the significative moments. In this occasions, the flash means dealing with additional settings and often so I find the images to "flat" and very contrasty - I also not a master at using external flashes.   Posted: 11/25/2019 19:29:29

Stephen Levitas   Stephen Levitas
(Group 32)
This is an interesting cross-cultural insight. Is the young Japanese couple having a location wedding, or do they have Tahitian ancestors? Is this a way for Tahitians to make an income from wedding tourism?   Posted: 11/24/2019 21:21:48
Stephan Debelle   Stephan Debelle
Hi Stephen,

This couple was from Tokyo but wished to have a Traditional Tahitian ceremony - You are right, it a way for Tahitian to make an income (me as well) as it is purely symbolic. In some cases (as this one) it is however an authentic feeling for the couple, they also chose to dress local with some handcrafted accessories. After the wedding we also ended up doing a shoot with the reef sharks.   Posted: 11/25/2019 19:33:03