Hi, we are Rita & Ricardo, partners in life and passionate photographers from Portugal, who’ve been shooting weddings since 2010 under the name R2Arte – Frames of a Lifetime.
We live in a small village by the sea and we love travelling, nature and rock climbing!
When we are not shooting weddings we are more likely to be outdoors, rock climbing with our son Vicente and friends or exploring Portugal in our van.
Photography has always been in our lives, since both our parents had the love for this art, which was granted to us and has grown over time, becoming our favorite hobby.
We’ve been shooting with Nikon cameras ever since: Ricardo’s first camera was a Nikon FM2 and mine was a Nikon F80.
We used analog until 2005, shooting mainly with 35mm slides, and sometimes Ricardo would use medium and large format. This was perfect for Nature, Travel and Landscape Photography, the main themes explored before falling in love with wedding and lifestyle photography.
We absolutely love to photograph the in-between moments, the unpredictable emotions, the chaotic feelings that make each wedding so unique!
The energy and love that is generated at a wedding are thrilling, the fuel that inspires us in the incessant search of the perfect photo!
Our photography equipment has changed over time to suit our needs, especially the cameras, which have become smaller and lighter. As we always invest in good quality lenses, we still maintain and use the vast majority of those we bought in the beginning!
When shooting weddings, we love to take advantage of natural and ambient light most of the time, so we prefer to use prime lenses, as they are more luminous and sharp.
And now the list of our photography gear…
Nikon D750 x 2: We’ve been using this camera for three years now (Rita’s previous camera was the D700 and Ricardo’s the D4s) and we think we get the job done with it! It’s a much lighter camera, which is a major advantage considering sometimes we shoot for 12 hours!
It also has two card slots, which is perfect for backup, and an amazing grip design; the image quality is superb and we have to highlight the dynamic range at low ISO and the excellent high ISO performance. For now we’re happy with it!
Fujifilm X-T2: Ricardo is the one fascinated with technology so when he heard about mirrorless cameras he decided to give it a try. X-T2 is small and light, perfect to use in our travel and sport climbing activities.
He loves it so much he started to use it at weddings too and now he uses this camera most of the wedding day, just setting it aside at night – Nikon D750 wins at low light conditions!
The main advantages he points out about the Nikon D750: its quieter shutter, the dedicated dials and hardware controls on the camera, the image in the viewfinder that helps a lot with judging exposition, high burst rate without blackout, to name a few…
He’s tempted to go for a mirrorless Nikon to work with only one system, so it’s just a matter of time…
Nikon 35mm f/1.4, Sigma Art 35mm f/1.4, and the equivalent Fujinon 23mm f/1.4: this focal lense is the winner because it’s very versatile and good for our documentary style so we use them a lot throughout the day!
Nikon 50mm f/1.8 and the equivalent Fujinon 35mm f/1.4: perfect to shoot details, we love these lenses because they are very small and sharp!
Nikon 85mm f/1.4, Nikon 85mm f/1.8 and the equivalent Fujinon 56mm f/1.2: we use them mainly for portraits or when we want to keep some distance on candid shots. We love the bokeh and background effect at small apertures.
Nikon 70-200mm f/2.8: This is an old favorite from Rita’s travel memories, but at weddings it remains in the bag most of the day! The exception is during couple portraits – she loves the flare effects at sunset light!
Meyer Optik Gorlitz Primoplan 58mm f/1.9: Ricardo uses this vintage lens under specific light conditions, to get some artistic shots of the couple, taking advantage of the creamy twirling bokeh!
Nikon Speedlight SB-900 x2: We’ve been using those flashes for many years now and we’re still happy with their performance! Needleless to say, we only use them at night, mainly on the dance floor, to create some special light effects or to take portraits of people in low light conditions.
In poor light conditions during the cake cutting or other night activities we fix an Aputure Amaran AL-M9 led light to a tripod (FotoQuantum Studio Light Stand).
This mini light is incredibly compact and lightweight and suitable for a wide variety of applications, so it’s always in our camera bag!
Also very small and helpful is the Convoy led flashlight.
Ricardo uses a leather strap from Shizuka to hang both cameras, and 2 x belt packs from Think Tank, which makes everything more accessible and comfortable.
Rita made her own strap from an old scarf and it turned out to be much more comfortable to wear around the neck than the original camera strap.
To carry and protect all the equipment, including the extra batteries/cards and chargers, we use these bags from Lowepro: Ricardo uses the Photo Classic BP 300AW and Rita the Hatchback 22L. We have been taking them everywhere we go for five years and they’re still very comfortable and reliable under severe weather conditions.
We don’t leave home without an extra snack and a water bottle and the two side pockets are perfect for carrying them.
Hardware & Software
We both have a computer and a HP LP2475W screen.
We cull our images using Photo Mechanic and we organize and edit the images with Adobe Bridge and Adobe Camera Raw.
Sometimes we use Photoshop for a more accurate edit.
Rita paginates all the albums using Smart Albums 2, which she loves because it’s very easy to use and to customize layouts, saving her a lot of time!
Although we carry in our bags a lot of different lenses, the truth is we are not changing lenses all the time. In fact, we’re realizing more and more that we shoot with the same lens for long periods of time.
Moments happen very fast at a wedding and the most important thing to us is not to miss any good shot (while changing a lens…)! So we just zoom in and out using our bodies!