OK friends, here are some tips for my beautiful brides…
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Posing for your wedding photography can either sound really exciting or really terrifying. Either way, it is best to have a few tricks up your sleeve to help ensure the best images possible. You have hired a professional who is going to have tips and tricks also, but it never hurts to know a few yourself!
1. Show Off Your Best Side! Everyone has one side of their face or body that they feel shows them in the best light. If you don’t know which side it is, take a long look in the mirror. Make a few poses from both sides of your face and body and you should be able to determine your “best side”. Request to be shot from that side as much as possible.
2. Soft Light is Your Friend! Soft light can be found in a room by a window, in the shade, as the sun rises or sets (Golden Hour- see my blog about Photo Lingo) or created by a flash bouncing off or shooting through something. Soft light helps eliminate harsh shadows which can exaggerate wrinkles, lines and imperfection (we don’t need that!). If you have the ability to dictate when your photos are shot, or where, opt for late evening or early morning, in the woods or by a window. Window light is perfect for getting ready shots…and most places you are getting ready will have a window.
3. Angles are Everything! Chose the right angle to position yourself in. Your photographer may chose an “unflattering angle” to do something creative but just so you know, a low angle does not make someone look taller as much as it makes someone look larger. Portraits are best shot at eye level or above. Angle your shoulders so that one shoulder is closer to the camera and one is farther away. This will slim your body down. Lift your chin up a little when the camera is above to eliminate the dreaded double chin (anyone can have one of these at the wrong angle!)
4. Hand on Hips- Strike A Pose There is Nothing To It! Thats right, the hands-on-the-hips pose that is so often natural to woman actually does work. Extend one leg out, pivot to the side and place the opposite hand on the hip. This creates length in the body and an angle which makes people appear slimmer and longer.
5. Practice Make Perfect! If you are really worried about how you are going to look in your wedding photographs, practice. Have a friend ( or your finance- he will love this) take some snap shots of different poses. Remember- if your body parts are in close to your body, i.e. your arms or chin, it will exaggerate their size. Keep your shoulders back and down your back, stand up or sit up straight, and try different angles. And smile, this is suppose to be fun!
To see more of Third Eye Photography’s work visit: www.3rdeyephoto.net
Interviewing wedding photographers can be very challenging. First, look at their website…do you like their work and style. Then google them. Do they come up on the first page? That is a good indication that they are serious about what they do (and they are spending money on marketing). Then set up a face to face. You want to feel comfortable with your wedding photographer because if you don’t they images are not going to look good at all! So take the time to meet with them. If that is completely out of the question you can FaceTime or Skype with them. This creates a more intimate conversation then just on the phone. Either way, you want to ask the right questions. Here are some good starting places:
1. Is my date available? If not, proceed no further…
2. How far in advance do I need to book you? Do you require a deposit?
3. How long have you been in business? How long have you been shooting weddings?
4. How would you describe your shooting style? (Photojournalistic? Traditional? It is best to know the difference and what your prefer)
5. How would you describe your working style? (Does the photographer pose and give direction or stay in the background and let the scenes unfold? This style shoot match the shooting style)
6. Do you have a full wedding I can view? A portfolio is always the best images a photographer has. If you view a full wedding album (web-version) you can really get a sense of want your final product will look like.
7. What type of equipment do you use? Do you have back-up equipment? (see my last post about deciphering photo lingo to have a better handle on the answer to this question).
8. Will you help me with me timeline and shot list? It is important that the photographer is in contact with your prior to your wedding to discuss how the day is going to unfold and what is most important to you.
9. What products do you offer after the wedding is completed? You will most likely want some prints, a CD of images or an album. Make sure you photographer offers these product if they interest you, and that they are high-end.
10. Do you use an assistant? Does he/she shoot during the wedding? It is nice to have more then 1 photographer. This will give you more variety of images.
11. If my wedding is out of town, do you charge for travel? Do you charge to travel for engagement photos? Make sure you add this to the pricing and your budget.
12. Have you shot at my wedding site before? If not, will you be scoping it out before the wedding? If you have, can I see photos of the other weddings at my site? This will give you a good idea of what your photos will look like at your ceremony and reception sites. If the photographer has not shot at that location I would request they go see the location before the wedding if they were not planning on doing so.
13. Is there an over-time charge if I need you to stay longer then contracted? If there is a charge make sure you have it in your budget incase you need your photographer to stay longer. It is important to talk about the timeline before making a decision on how many hours you contract your photographer for.
14. Ask about the Packages offered: Do I get a CD of images? What is the printing size of the images on the CD? Are there albums offered? Do you shoot engagement photos? Rehearsal dinner or day-after brunch photos? Will I see the proofs? Is there an on-line album to share/print from for my family and friends? How long will it take to get my products or see my images? Do you re-touch and edit the images?
15. Do I need to sign a contract and give a deposit? All professional photographers will require both to hold the date. Ask about a refund if there is a cancelation, although this should be clearly stated in the contract.
Lastly, ask yourself if you feel a connection with your photographer. Does he/she seem professional and is dressed appropriately for your meeting. Does he/she speak clearly, seem assertive and knows what he/she is talking about? These are all good indications of what it will be like working with this photographer on your wedding day. Is he/she listening and seems like he/she cares about your needs? The photography of your wedding day will be what lasts over time, what jogs your memories as your memory fades. Go with your gut, follow your heart.
To see more photos by Third Eye Photography and find out more about photographer, Rebecca Susan Ofstedahl visit www.3rdeyephoto.net
I am asking my future brides and their entourages to ask me questions. How can I help during this time of stress, happiness and planning!? What do you want to know about photography, planning, posing, flower arrangements…anything! Ask away. This is your time to pick my brain, as a bride myself only 2 short years ago and as a professional wedding photographer in the field. I want to know what you want to know! I want to help make this experience the most seamless and special possible. Please ask!
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