Having a great photographer is an awesome start to achieving killer wedding day images, but it doesn’t end there. There are a few things you can do to give your ‘tog great ammo and set them up for success. Brides aren’t usually seasoned photographers, or wedding planners, so these items might not be something you’d consider on your own. Heck, I should probably have called this post “how to cheat at being a bride” since these tips should put you steps ahead of the herd in achieving gorgeous wedding photos.
1. Book a pro
Hire someone who shoots weddings. Don’t hire someone who shoots weddings, landscapes, cars, still life, babies, real estate and school photos. Jack of all trades, master of none, heard that before? Oh, and just because you know someone with a great camera, doesn’t mean having them shoot your one-and-only wedding day is a good idea – be sure that path is what you surely want.
2. Be yourself
Let me tell you, if you are constantly worried about a double chin, it’ll show in the photos, and you’ll be doing yourself a disservice. Don’t wear a dress that’s not you, you’ll regret it later. Just be the good ol’ down-to-earth you.
3. Relax and enjoy yourself
Simple one, this. If you’re stressed, worn out, tired, tense, it will show through in the photography. Don’t worry about who’s pressing play on the music for the reception, or if Dad has had too many beers at night – who cares, haha – seriously, let your hair down and enjoy yourself. You know that Eminem song, “lose yourself in the music, the moment, you own it…” yeah? Just do that all day.
4. Get an E-session done
There is nothing that preps you for being in front of a camera like getting in front of a camera. See if your photographer has an optional engagement shoot, and take it. It will take some of the nerves out of the day.
5. Don’t fake smile. Fake smiles look fake
This one is generally up to your photographer to handle. We, team Glen and Fiona, like to interact with our couples, and evoke some real emotion and some real laughter out of them. The best smile a bride – or anyone for that matter – will give, is straight after laughing. We’ll often get our clients to act out an awkward movement or pose that can only end in laughter, for example, and you can be sure it wasn’t the awkward moment that started it that we wanted to capture.
6. Make the bed
You know those awesome images you find on pinterest of the bride getting ready or the detail shots of the dress – there’s no messy beds in the back of those, no clothes all over the floor, or any of that. You won’t want your photographer tidying the room before/while they’re shooting, or seeing those things in the back of your finished images looking not-so-hot, but it’s an easy one to forget.
7. Strike a pose
The most flattering way you can pose, as a woman, is side on to the camera. Have your toes and body facing off 45 degrees, put your weight on your back foot, and turn your head back to the lens. It’ll thin you out, and shows off a gorgeous shape. Oh, bend your arms a little – a dangling arm adds width to a body, where as it can look great with a bend or on a hip. I know, I know, you want to keep your arms in close because it’s natural when wearing a strapless dress, but believe me, a little gap between the elbow and body will thin you out. Posing really will come down to the photographer on the day, but that’ll get you started.
8. Stand up / sit up straight
Don’t be self conscious, be proud. Slouchy brides don’t often make gorgeous photos, but a bride sitting up straight, smiling and giggling when her makeup is being put on, is an easy winner in our books.
This one is huge. In Australia we can sometimes get the craziest, harshest sun during summer months, and you may not want your guests seen in photos squinting on the beach for a 1pm ceremony, with dark shadows under their eyes. The best light for photography is in those golden hours just before sunset. If you’re a stickler for good light, then talk with your photographer about timeline options, to get the absolute best results. During the evening, keep your reception venue well lit. The best photos from wedding venues, the ones you see blogged all the time, usually are well lit, and don’t have the lighting turned almost dark like a night club.
10. Trust your photographer
If you’ve hired a professional, it’s because you love their work, right? There’s a good solid chance they know what they’re doing, so don’t be shy in asking for their input on your timeline, or just some advice in general. If you’ve hired a pro, and it’s someone you connect with, you’ll have it made. If you find yourself writing out lists of shots you want the photographer to take, then you’ve not got a lot of trust in them, have you? Finding someone you ‘click’ with is key, and that trust will lead to gorgeous images.
Ms Polka says: Great tips- trusting in your photographer and being yourself? That’s sound advice for dealing with any wedding vendor!
About Glen & Fiona of of Glen + Fiona Photographers: “We’re Glen and Fiona, and we photograph some pretty fun weddings in places like Brisbane and the Sunshine Coast for our awesome couples.”
Photos by Glen + Fiona Photographers