Chances are if you’re reading this, you have a photo session coming up — either for your engagement, anniversary, or just because! No matter what reason you have for getting new photos taken, you want them to look great, right? The easiest way to make them look great is by having a great time, and I’m gonna cover how to make that happen in this article with my top three tips for your next (or first!) photo session!
1. Relax during the session!
I know, you’re probably thinking, “well duh, of course you’re supposed to relax; what’s a REAL tip?” But hold on! This is at the top of the list because as much as it’s obvious, it’s equally important and sooo understated!
The thing is, relaxing in front of a camera is easier said than done, so at the beginning of your photo shoot you should really try to be conscious of it. Trust me, I know how awkward it can feel to be in front of a camera. The most important part of your session is that you’re having FUN, and you can’t do that if you’re tense and anxious! Remember that Roald Dahl quote? “If you have good thoughts they will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.” A photo session is exactly like that: the emotions you feel during it (good or bad) are almost guaranteed to show up in the final photos. Meaning: if you FEEL tense, you’re likely to LOOK tense in the photos. Likewise, if you feel relaxed and confident, you’re likely to look relaxed and confident in the photos.
So here’s my best tip on how to relax and thus have fun. Repeat after me: embrace the awkwardness.
Sounds counterintuitive, right? But trust me, it works. Embrace how ridiculous you feel and be comfortable with laughing at yourselves. Lean into it! Do that, and after 15 minutes it’ll start to feel easier, which leads me to my next point.
2. Focus on each other instead of the photos/camera
Again, I know this is easier said than done, but it pays off TEN fold. The more you focus on each other during your photo shoot, the less you’re aware of the camera in front of you, and the more natural your photos will turn out. Laugh, talk to, tickle, snuggle, and hold each other in a way that you’d do naturally at home. Pretend you’re in the Cone of Silence and there’s nothing else happening around you. How would you interact then? You’d probably get all cozy and talk to each other for lack of anything to do.
3. Trust your photographer
And now for my last photo session tip: if you’ve booked an experienced photographer, they’re going to know what’s best for location, time, and clothing choices for your session (don’t hesitate to ask for their help or opinion on these!), as well as actions or poses for you to do that will make for the best looking photos — even if they sound weird in the moment — so trust them!
If you want some reassurance, check out a bunch of my past sessions here — almost all of my couples tell me how awkward and nervous they are before we start the shoot. But they’re also the ones to tell me immediately after how much fun it was! They’ll be the first to tell you that they’re not models in any capacity, but they sure look like it. And you will too if you follow these tips! Go get ’em tiger. You got this!! 🙂