how to rock your next photo shoot:
Preparing for a photo shoot can be nerve racking. You may be worrying about anything from how to pose, what to wear, will you look like you have a double chin, and will the photographer make you look good? It's normal to have fears like these, and that's why I've created this guide to totally rocking your next shoot. They're written in the context of engagements, bridals, and weddings, can be applied to other portrait situations as well. Happy reading!
1) Love Your Clothing Choices-- Confidence is Key: As a photographer I get asked about what to wear on photo sessions a lot. I have three simple rules:
First: Stay away from a lot of really thin stripes. They make for optical illusions in photos. A few thin stripes are fine, but you may want to rethink sporting a maxi dress that's head to toe in centimeter thin stripes.
Second: Patterns, colorful clothes, neutral colors, and layers = thumbs up! Basically, aside from the thin stripes rule, anything goes. I recommend layers just so you can have some variety (i.e. take the layers off or put back on for a few shots). If it's just you and your sweetheart, don't worry so much about color coordinating. I tell couples to choose a theme, like "casual" or "sunday best" and roll with that. The vibe will match, the colors can have some freedom.
Third and most important rule: Above all, you must feel absolutely rockstar smoking hot confident in your clothes. Confidence is key.
2) Hair and Makeup Go a Long Way: Really. I am the kind of girl who generally doesn't bother with a lot of makeup. My go-to look is mascara and some light powder on my face. But for photos, a little bit extra seriously goes a long way. Seriously. Photo land is a magical place where things like hair and makeup can take your look from average to jaw dropping in a snap. The way I see it, you should go one of two ways with this:
▪ The $$ route- hire a hair and make up artist. Most local salons offer this service, or you can ask your photographer if they know any they like to work with. Most of us do, and we will be so happy to help refer you to people.
▪ The DIY route- hit up your special occasion make up collection or run to Sephora to start one. Get on Pinterest for some hair-do ideas. Borrow your sister's lipstick.
However you swing it, do a little more make up and hair prep than you would on an average day. You will not regret it.
3) Forget about the photographer-- If you're like me and most people out there, you're probably a little nervous in front of the camera. (if you're not... what?!) My advice to any client is try to forget about the photographer. Don't be afraid to just focus on each other. Maybe your mom and grandma want those formal posed photos of you both smiling and looking at the camera-- you'll definitely get some of those from your session. But my guess is you'll be a fan of the ones that actually capture you and your cutie interacting with each other in an authentic way. Let go of the expectation to say cheese or smile a certain way. When you feel nervous, look at the guy/girl you're in love with and just be. That is photo heaven.
4) Keep Moving-- Your photographer will probably put you in some poses. For instance, maybe they'll ask you to hold hands side by side and look at each other. Here's a secret your photographer would love for you to know: just because we put you in a pose doesn't mean you need to hold still in it until we tell you otherwise. You can keep moving. Say you're standing there, holding hands, side by side, and you really just want to sneak a kiss in... Go for it! You can rest your head on your boo's shoulder, or pull them in close. Photographers love this kind of variety, and you'll love it in the end game with your finished photos. I try to make sure my clients know this from the get-go, but if you have unclear expectations with your photographer, I say err on the side of small, sweet, natural movements.
5) Location-- Think about shooting in locations that are special to you. What are you hoping the overall vibe of your photo session will be? Sometimes you just want to go to an awesome place outdoors and get some UNREAL photos of you and your honey in a cool place. That's awesome and we love photographing rad places with cool couples. You might also want to think about heading to some special spots. Maybe the two of you love to go on a certain nightly walk route, maybe you love your city life and want to shoot around town, maybe you have a soft spot for the trail where you hiked together for the first time. Photographers can make beautiful photos in just about any location, and we'll all have so much better of a time together if it's somewhere with passion. (of course, you can feel passion from just being in a random awesome outdoor location too).
Bonus) PRINT YOUR PHOTOS! There's a saying in the photo world: "don't let your jpegs grow up to be jpegs." Once you've followed this guide and totally rocked your photo shoot, your photos deserve a spot on your wall, or in a beautiful book on your coffee table. You deserve a well-made tangible reminder of the beauty of your love story. Ask your photographer for print suggestions (or better yet, order from your photographer). Please don't print at costco or wal-mart or whatever drug store is close by. All print shops are not created equal.
that's a wrap
Can't wait to see how you totally rock it on your photo shoot!