Sunset Engagement Photos

We usually like to shoot engagement photos at sunset because the light always looks better during the 'golden hour' right before sunset. For this shoot, we made some nice portraits with a twist of a 'Cinderella' theme at the Castle at Ashley Manor down in Chandler, Arizona as we waited for the sun to set.

Just before the sun dipped below the horizon, I took these guys around to the 'back lot' behind the venue, which is just an ordinary dirt lot with a view of the open desert south of Phoenix. Just goes to show that you can get awesome engagement photos anywhere if you're willing to look.

I like the juxtaposition of the semi-formal wear (black=AWESOME for engagements) and the stark landscape. And yes, I did just say 'juxtaposition'. 

Sunset Engagement Photos
Sunset Engagement Photos

Photographic Details

  • Shot on a Canon 7D with a 70-200mm f2.8 IS lens
  • This is more or less how the actual scene looked - although they were more silhouetted, so I brought in some external flash to compensate and really amp the drama.
  • I exposed for the mountains in the distance, knowing that the sun would be blown out, but I wanted the flare anyway. The main thing I wanted to retain was the detail on their faces.
  • Lit with an Alienbee B800 at 1/8 power, camera-left, just outside the frame feathered 'up' so that I wouldn't nuke the ground around them too badly.
  • I also used a LumoPro LP160 shoe-mount strobe on a stand just camera-right at 1/32 power for just a touch of fill so that I'd have at least some detail in the blacks to work with.
Sunset Engagement Photos