Relaxed and Natural Portrait Photographs on Your Wedding Day
I hate having my photo taken
I’m just speaking for myself – but I’ll bet you’re in the 95% of people I meet who also find it difficult.
I’ve got photos hidden away in drawers – old graduation or party photos where the photographer just wanted me to lift my chin a bit, look in a certain direction, hold my shoulders back. You can see the panic in my eyes and that I’m just really uncomfortable and hating every minute of it.
I’ve always made it my mission to not take that kind of photo.
But whilst the majority of my wedding photography is capturing beautiful natural moments, I also like to get some portraits of just the two of you, as I realise that it’s very rare to get to spend some time with a professional photographer.
So how do I go about getting beautiful, relaxed wedding portraits of couples, 100% of the time, with minimal posing and direction? I keep it simple.
I usually try to steal you away for a few minutes in the evening as the sun is setting. I do this for two reasons;
1. The light is usually gorgeous at this time of day. Low in the sky and golden and just perfect for taking portraits. (If you need conformation, check out this engagement shoot)
2. All the Big Stuff is out of the way – you’re no longer worried about speeches, you haven’t been standing round for group photos for ages. You’ve spent time with your guests and eaten and are usually a lot more relaxed.
Of course, with winter weddings and rainy days and all the other circumstances that are beyond my control as a photographer, all the elements may not line up perfectly. But the key thing is I want you relaxed.
And of course another benefit of leaving wedding portraits so late in the day is that I’ve been observing the two of you and how you interact all day – so I’ve got a feel of how the two of you relate and your body language.
Just Letting You Be Yourselves
My ideal way of working is just standing back and letting you be yourselves. I’ll often ask you where to stand, but I’ll stand back and see what happens – and in 90% of cases the results are beautiful. The truth is that although you don’t enjoy having your photo taken, just getting to spend a little bit of time away from everyone is exactly what you need at this point! But there’s definitely minimal posing and direction, as I’m trying to capture the true relationship between you both, and however geeky and awkward that is, it usually makes for the best photos.
Making it Fun
If there’s still a little awkwardness, I’ll bring in some games and prompts to make the process more fun. These are designed to explore the relationship and connections between to two of you – so to capture pictures of how you naturally relate. I’m more likely to use them on an engagement session to break the session up a bit though, as usually step 1 (letting you be yourselves) has worked wonders.
What do you want from your wedding photography portraits?
Of course, a portrait session doesn’t only have to be about the photos that I want to capture. I’m your photographer for the day, after all. If you have ideas or poses that you want captured please feel free to talk to me about them, drop me an image as an example and have your say.
And of course, if you have any questions about this article please drop me a line. I love to know what couples are thinking and what their concerns are and any suggestions only help me improve this.
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