Tips from a wedding photographer's perspective
Your wedding day is a special occasion that you'll want to remember for years to come, and one of the best ways to capture the memories is through photography. As a bride, it may be your first time getting married and having true professional photos taken, which can lead to some anxiety and uncertainty about posing, looking your best, and feeling confident. I love being able to share my tips and insights to help ease these concerns and make the experience enjoyable and stress-free.
First Let's Talk Prep!
These tips may seem like common sense, but it's easy to forget them in the chaos of your wedding day. Prioritize these tips to not only improve how you look in your photos but also how you feel on your big day.
- Firstly, make sure you get plenty of rest. Try to get a full night's sleep before your wedding day, so you wake up feeling refreshed and energized. As tempting as it may be to stay up late with excitement or stress, rest is crucial. If you can, find ways to relax before the big day, such as taking a bath, having a glass of wine, or reading a book. Your photographer and makeup artist will thank you!
- Stay hydrated by drinking plenty of water throughout the week before your wedding. Watch your sodium intake too, as a lower sodium diet with adequate hydration will ensure your skin looks its best and prevent bloating from stress.
- Start your day off right by eating a nutritious breakfast high in protein. This will keep you feeling satisfied and energized throughout the day. Don't forget to eat before the ceremony; no one wants to feel shaky or hangry at the altar!
- Hire a professional hair and makeup artist to help you achieve the perfect look for your wedding day and ensure your hair and makeup stay in place throughout the day. This takes a lot of stress and worry off your plate, helping ensure you feel confident in your photos. Today is the day to pamper yourself!
- Take breaks throughout the day to rest, relax, and soak in the moment. Work these breaks into your timeline if possible. Allow extra time for getting ready in case things run late, and take advantage of any in-between moments.
Now Let's Talk Posing
Clients often express their concern about feeling awkward in photos. This usually stems from not having had professional photos taken before or feeling nervous in front of the camera. However, I always reassure them that it doesn't matter! There is so much love and energy on the big day that real moments happen naturally. If you have chosen a great photographer that you trust, don't worry. They will lead you through the session and have you feeling confident and amazing in your photos!
During the session, I like to remind my couples of the power and beauty of their love story. I never try to change them into something they're not; instead, I encourage them to be the fullest version of themselves because that's where beautiful imagery emerges. This isn't a photoshoot for Vogue - you're much more interesting than that. But having a few key poses and prompts can help us capture the best images. Here are some of my favorite tips for obtaining effortless and beautiful photos.
- Discuss your limits with your photographer-I gauge my clients' comfort levels with poses and prompts, as some prefer adventurous or intimate posing, while others prefer more traditional posing. It's important to communicate your preferences to your photographer beforehand, such as whether you're comfortable laying in a field or taking photos in the rain. I'm an adventurer at heart but will always respect my clients' boundaries and create stunning images accordingly.
- Practice makes perfect- Consider scheduling an engagement session with your photographer. As a bonus, my wedding couples receive a complimentary engagement session. It's a chance to get to know each other better, practice common prompts and poses, and discover the poses that work best for you as a couple.
- Go to Poses- Every photographer has a few favorite go to poses. Here are a few of my favorites.
- The Drunk Walk- It involves the couple walking hand in hand and playfully bumping hips while taking turns laughing at each other and the camera. This often leads to natural and genuine moments of laughter and joy.
- Face to Face- is a timeless and elegant pose. The couple faces each other and can choose to gaze into each other's eyes, rest their foreheads together, or even share a gentle kiss. This pose offers plenty of variations, and as a photographer, I provide guidance to capture a variety of shots. By providing prompts and cues, we can maximize the number of images and moments captured in this pose.
- The arm grab- I love this versatile pose as it offers a range of photo opportunities. Firstly, I have the groom face away from the camera while the bride loops her arms around his, resting her head on his shoulder. This allows me to capture both a beautiful shot of the ring and a stunning image highlighting the bride's features. From the front, I can take a stoic shot of the groom gazing off as his wife snuggles in. To create a more dynamic shot, I often have the bride look back at the groom, prompting him to place a tender kiss on her forehead.
- Send a Shot List- I always appreciate when couples send me a shot list or photo inspiration. This not only helps me tailor the images to their preferences but also enables me to explore new techniques and approaches. The process of reviewing a couple's shot list also helps me get to know them better, allowing me to provide a more personalized experience.