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Tips from the Pros: looking your best in wedding photography

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Most of us can be rather critical of the way we look in photographs. Which can become particularly challenging when planning your wedding and realizing that you will be the focus of many cameras on your wedding day. Being in front of a camera may feel awkward, being the center of attention can be a unsettling, and yet you want to look your best for the documentation of your big day.

We asked a few of our trusted and recommended event photographers to share with us their thoughts on looking your best in your wedding photographs.

Tip #1: Do an engagement session
“Take the time to establish the rapport before the big day,” is the primary suggestion from Jeremy Fraser of LA Exposures. The best way to do that is to schedule an engagement session and become comfortable not only with the photographer, but also being in front of the camera. “The end result will be not only breathtaking but full of emotion.”

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(image by LA Exposures)

Tip #2: Plan on a “first look”
Lisa Peardon & Alberto Carrillo from Peardon Carrillo Photography recommend planning for a “First Look” on your wedding day. “Doing a First Look provides much more time for doing photos without being rushed. You get to relax and actually have fun. No stress on your wedding day having to rush after the ceremony to get all of the photos in. So the quality of the photos on your wedding day really is so much better when you do a First Look.”

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(image by Peardon Carrillo Photography)

Tip #3: Drink lots of water
Hydration is healthy for so many reasons, so drink plenty of water in the weeks leading up to your wedding. “This helps to keep your skin glowing, flush out blemishes, and help you feel more confident,” offers Jen Berggren of B&G Photography. “Not only will your skin look and feel healthier, but your make-up will go on better and stay on longer.”

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(Image by B&G Photography)

Tip #4: Don’t worry about what you look like
This is a tough one for most of us. Joel Maus of Studio EMP shares this story: “Years ago, I had a father of the bride ask me in our initial consultation where the albums of the ugly brides were. I was taken aback a bit, and images of my past brides started flickering through my head as I realized and shared with him that I had not had any ugly brides. I explained that I may have photographed some that didn’t fit society’s image of ‘beautiful’ but every one of them felt beautiful and wonderful inside and that came through in the photos. Dad thought I was full of it, but I was being honest.” 

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(image by Studio EMP)

Don’t even think about what the camera sees. Its the inner emotions and joy that will translate to the photo. Joel adds, “Movement is always a great way to look natural in photos- standing still is fine for some but walking, pulling, grabbing, hugging, dancing, etc. make images that I love.”

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(image by Studio EMP)

Tip #5: Be up for anything!
Jen Berggren of B&G Photography suggests an open sense of adventure and trust with your photographer. “As an artist, photographers are inspired at anytime or anywhere. Sometimes ideas can sound kooky to you, but if the photographer has a vision (and by the way, did you hire them because you loved their images?) let them try it. You never know what kind of epic image you could walk away with.”

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(image by B&G Photography)

Tip #6: Be in the moment and take it all in.
“It seems so silly to say, but remember to breathe!” offers Cat Krantz Benner of Next Exit Photography. “I try to remind all of my couples throughout their day and they always thank me for it. As you breathe out, let the joy, emotion and laughter fill you up. That is when we capture your true spirit and the love you have for one another.”

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(image by Next Exit Photography)

Watch one episode of America’s Next Top Model and you’ll know there is an art and technique to posing for the camera, but as these photographers have suggested, looking good for photos has less to do with posing and everything to do with feeling the moment, letting go, and trusting your artistic professional behind the camera to guide you along the way.  For at the end of this amazing day, those images that become your memories captured the spirit and love of the day and the beauty of it all…

“Happy Planning!”

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