Give a big ol’ Burgh Brides welcome to today’s guest writer, Leeann! She is the boss lady behind Leeann Marie, Photographers, she’s one of my favorite people in this industry (hence why she’s part of the exclusive Burgh Brides Vendor Guide), and she’s a total BA with a camera. Lucky for you, she’s sharing her photography expertise with these 9 practical tips to make your wedding day photos even better. Take it away, Leeann…(oh, and be sure to check out my Instagram feed tomorrow, when Leeann will take it over!)
As a wedding photographer, it’s important for me to see to it that my brides have as wonderful a wedding experience as possible, especially with their images. One of those ways I think I can really help is to get you thinking about all those things you might not think about. Knowing – and practicing – this tips can really help to transform your photos and make them absolutely, perfectly memorable!
1.) Stick All Your Stuff in One Room.
The whole getting ready part of the day is generally chaotic with bags and clothing and whatever else all over the place. Lots of times, those items are hogging the room with the best light. Have your bridesmaids store their items in an area away from the room where you will be getting ready so that we get beautiful images without the clutter.
2.) Mom Gets Dressed First.
You know that airplane advisory about putting on your own oxygen mask before helping someone else with theirs? OK, so this isn’t quite as dire a situation, but have your mother (or whoever else is helping you) get dressed before you do. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve encountered a mom wearing an oversized sweatshirt and yoga pants helping her daughter zip into a dress. When mom is all ready and looking gorgeous, the photos of her getting you into your dress will turn into treasured keepsakes.
3.) Bend Your Arms.
I recently had a bride who was worried about how her arms would look in her pictures. I told her that the best thing she could do was practice posing and bending her arms. Knowing that you’ll be doing things like grabbing onto a suit jacket, holding your bouquet to your hip bone, and grabbing picking up the bottom of your dress can help you get those poses right and make those movements feel natural on your wedding day.
4.) Practice Your Facial Expressions.
You’ll probably want to spend a bit of time in front of a mirror making a fool out of yourself so that you can get those expressions right. Believe me, doing something that might feel a bit silly now can really prevent you from ending up disappointed with your look later. I’ve had lots of brides decide on their wedding day that they want to go with a more serious look, so they’ll do that sort-of-but-not-really-smiling-smile (you know, the half smile without showing teeth). The problem is, if you haven’t practiced that look, you could end up looking angry in your pictures. I’m pretty sure that’s not the look you’re going for.
5.) Limit Your Pinterest Ideas.
Pinterest is such a great source for inspiration, but when it comes to YOUR wedding day, leave it at that – inspiration. Use those pins to get excited about the possibilities you can create for yourself. Don’t get caught up in recreating your Pinterest board because you’ll end up losing the authenticity of your day. I am always watching for moments, and will capture the day – your day – as it happens!
6.) Hire a Great Makeup Artist.
Contrary to what you might have been told about wearing makeup, more is better than less when it comes to wedding photos. Whenever we do our own makeup, we tend to go lighter than necessary for pictures. A skilled makeup artist will know how to apply the right amount that will be stunning and last for the whole day.
7.) Stand Up Straight.
Just like your mother told you, stand up straight for your pictures. Good posture is good for wedding photos too! So, stand up straight, suck in your belly button, roll your shoulders back and point your heart to the sky!
8.) No Bouquets on the Head Table.
A bouquet in a vase directly in front of the bride and groom looks really pretty, and I do truly like the look of it (and I probably did it at my wedding :)), but it’s not so great when it comes to getting a great shot for the toasts. Put that bouquet somewhere else for those photos.
9.) Think about the Fire Alarms.
When you’re planning out the reception, think about where the fire alarms are located around the venue. Knowing where the fire alarms are isn’t just important for safety reasons. It’s also important to know when it comes to where the head table is to be placed. Lots of times, venues stick the head tables against the wall with the fire alarm, which ends up directly behind the bride and groom. As a photographer, this drives me just a little bit crazy, because it’s something that can be easily avoided.
What do you think of Leeann’s tips? What else could make your wedding day photos even better? Let’s hear it below!