As a wedding photographer, I can truly say I take pride in making my clients feel comfortable in front of my camera. If you want to feel comfortable taking photos on your wedding day, this blog is for you.
I get it, because I've been there too. I was SO excited for my wedding photos, but I didn't know what to expect, so naturally I was nervous. Will I blink, where do I put my hands, am I going to look stiff? Literally all of these questions were running through my head. If you're not a model, chances are you might be having some similar thoughts. Don't worry, I can confirm that t's completely normal to feel this way! Today I wanted to share several tips to help you get comfortable in front of the camera on your wedding day - and bonus, when the time comes, I promise you'll have fun doing it!
Practice makes perfect
As soon as a client expresses any mention of being nervous in front of the camera for their wedding photos, my first recommendation is to book an engagement session. It's probably one of the best ways to get comfortable in front of the camera, because it's practice! If this is you, schedule an engagement shoot with your photographer to get used to being in front of the camera. Not only that, it's a great chance for you two to work together. You'll learn how they work, they'll learn how you work, and it's a great opportunity to see what their outputs look like and how they capture you in this chapter of your lives.
Take deep breaths and relax
On your wedding day, especially, it's common for some brides and grooms to feel overwhelmed, stressed out, or anxious. A simple but effective tip I always like to give is to step back, take a few deep breaths and try to relax. Have you ever heard of horse lips? Google it. It might seem silly, but it's a great way to shake the nerves (and if you do it during your portraits it usually results in a genuine laugh or two). Just remember, you hired your wedding photographer to document all of the special moments, and to guide you during portraits so that you look incredible AND feel comfortable in front of the camera too.
Your wedding day is not a day to act or pose in a way that isn't natural to you - you don't need to try to be a model for the day. The entire point of the day - and having a photographer there - is to celebrate the two of you, authentically. If you're more introverted and quiet, that's okay. Let your photographer capture that. I can guarantee you that your wedding photos will always be more meaningful when they're reflective of how you and your partner truly are. When your photographer is guiding you or prompting you during portraits, they aren't looking for you to "nail the pose". They're looking for your own interpretation of it, so don't put so much pressure on yourselves. Again, your wedding day is all about celebrating your love and your unique personalities. Let your photographer know what your preferences are and what makes you feel most comfortable. Which leads me to my next point...
Talk to your photographer
I can't emphasize the importance of this enough. Have a conversation with your photographer about what you're looking for, what your expectations are, and if you have anything you're unsure of, let them know. It's a great opportunity to share your thoughts and ideas with them, and ask for their advice and guidance. A good photographer will always be able to offer suggestions and help you feel at ease.
Remember your one job
On your wedding day, it's easy to get caught up in the details and forget the reason why you're there - to celebrate your love for each other. That is literally your one job! To remember the love, the happiness, the tears, and all of the moments that have brought you to this specific day in time. Focus on your partner, and try to intentionally focus on being present. Your photographer will be thinking about timing, lighting, angles, etc. You do your job, and trust that they will do theirs and capture every single moment along the way. Try not to let the unknown get to you. I often hear couples on their wedding day say how much they built up the portrait portion of the day in their head to be something far more stressful than what it actually is. Just trust me, it's going to be incredible. Don't let the anticipation get the best of you!
Take breaks when needed
A key thing to remember is that you are the one calling the shots on your wedding day. If you feel overwhelmed during photos, or like it's too much, take a break. It's okay to step away from the camera and take a few moments for yourself. Take a deep breath, have a drink of water, and gather your thoughts. Your photographer will understand and support you. I've had brides change their mind on sunset photos on the eve of their wedding. And guess what? GASP... that's okay. Because it's not about your wedding photographers portfolio, their instagram feed, or if they got any BTS content for their reels. It's about you, and your wishes, because it's your wedding day.
Find a photographer you trust
I'm sure you've probably read this one a few times in other blogs, but it's so important. When you hire a wedding photographer that you trust, who's work you love, and who you connect with as a person, it makes you feel so much more confident because you're not worried about these things (and they're kind of a big deal). When you like the person you're working with, you relax, naturally. Your smiles are genuine, and you might feel more comfortable being vulnerable with your spouse in front of them if a trust level has been established. More trust = even more incredible photos of your wedding day! Can't emphasize this last point enough.
Remember, your wedding day is all about celebrating your love and creating beautiful memories. Don't let your nerves get in the way of that. By following these tips and trusting your photographer, you'll feel comfortable in front of the camera and have stunning photos that you'll cherish for years to come.
Are you newly engaged? Such incredible news, I'm so happy for you and your forever person. If you're currently looking for your wedding photographer, then let's talk! It's an honour I don't take lightly and I would be so touched to be there to capture such an important day for you both.