What would one expect from a fine dining artiste—whom I met during his position at the Metropolitan Museum of Art‘s Members Dining Room—for his engagement session?
Well, my first and obvious target for this photo session was undoubtedly The Met, but what I had in mind was too big for the museum to swallow, and even the connections did not help… Fear not, the alternative plan was to use one of New York’s fine vineyards, Raphael.
The trip was about three hours from Queens to the far east end of Long Island but riding in the back seat in a pleasant company of two cosmopolitan young people was a charm. The first thing I noted when we arrived and they changed was the well-coordinated wardrobe, a classic black and white with an irresistible peplum for her and suspenders for him. Aaaah, I could not wait to start shooting this fashion-driven engagement session! I was getting the vibes very similar to another winery engagement session at City Winery.
By itself, Raphael Vineyard and Winery is a beautiful and feature-packed location: you have the rows of grapevines, a balcony overlooking the estate, wooden staircases and bar, and of course, the cold cellars with the stacks of barrels, complemented with a private tasting room. The scorching summer sun and limited time did not allow us to go into the vines themselves but I took advantage of everything else.
The bright midday sun on the balcony got overpowered and well-balanced with my speedlights but made the couple sweat. As most of my clients, they braved through that little torture. The concluding shots in the wine tasting room were done with them lying on a table while I put a chair on top of them and climbed it to reach the ceiling and shoot through the chandelier. Enjoy the set as I did photographing it!
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