Being in front of the camera is kind of weird. Other than maybe some quick shots at a party or someone else’s wedding, when else do you really have a whole photoshoot (or two) to yourselves? So, to help out, I’ve come up with some tips for how to feel more relaxed during your shoot and come away with photos that truly represent you as a couple.
LET YOUR GUARD DOWN
I know it can be difficult, but the best photos come when you are interacting as you usually do. If you’re always joking around or singing songs with “meows” replacing all the lyrics (I may or may not do this) then that’s what I want you to do during our shoot. These images are for you, not for anyone else. So when you look at them down the road in however many years, they should bring back memories of this time in your life, not some idea of what engagement or wedding portraits should look like. It can be a little scary letting a photographer into your little intimate moments. Remember that I’m just a person, I was actually in your position two years ago, and I want to capture your relationship for you in the most real way possible.
TAKE DIRECTION, BUT NOT BLINDLY
I always give direction during your wedding portrait session and engagement sessions, but after a certain point I’ll let you relax into whatever “pose” (I kind of hate this word, but you know what I mean) you’re in and make it your own. If something doesn’t feel like you, don’t feel forced into it. Just let me know! I always try to read a couple and figure out their personalities before and during shooting, and what you seem most comfortable doing. This way I can adapt the session so that the photos reflect you. And I’ll let you in on a sneaky secret – sometimes I intentionally ask you to do something kind of awkward so that you end up laughing about it and I can get a natural shot of you guys.
DON’T LOOK AT ME!
That sounds kind of weird but all it means is – try not to worry about the camera. Yes, sometimes I’ll ask you to look at the me for certain shots. But really, this session is about the two of you. So it makes sense that you’re mostly paying attention to each other, and what you’re doing.
DON’T FEEL LIKE YOU HAVE TO BE “READY”
Sometimes when I’m shooting a couple and they hear the shutter, they’ll say “oh sorry, we weren’t ready!” Guess what? I know you weren’t. Usually those end up being the best, most natural photos of the bunch. The more you can just be together as you always are and forget the camera is there, the better.
DRESS FOR THE OCCASION
No, I don’t mean dress up in your Sunday best. I mean wear what you usually would for whatever we’re doing. If we’re walking around the park, maybe some comfy flats and jeans and a sweater. You don’t want to be restricted by what you’re wearing, and you definitely don’t want to wear something you wouldn’t normally. If you usually like hiking or climbing trees when you’re hanging out outside, let’s do it! There’s no point in photos that don’t capture what makes you unique.
Just keep in mind who this session is for (you), and why these photos are important, and you’ll be good to go!