Magic in your photos
You know that photo, the one that seems to transport you somewhere else, where the light falls perfectly on someone’s face, where you can almost feel the breeze that is lightly lifting a veil or shaping a dress, the effortless expression on that person’s face or the sheer joy they seem to be experiencing with their partner. I think that’s what we strive for when we think of wedding photos, and most people look at photographer’s portfolios to find evidence of this kind of work.
I think that a good 70% of those magical photos comes from the photographer’s expertise and creative eye, but here’s the one ingredient only you can bring to the table: yourself. Turns out that those images that stir some kind of emotion within us needed a few things to make them as wonderful as they ended up being. Curious? Keep on reading.
First up: Presence. This is a no brainer, you’re being photographed, you have to be where you are, right? But presence takes more than just being there, it takes engaging, it takes listening, it takes actively being there. It’s an important component to incredible photos because images with eyes that are intentional are on a whole other level. I always tell my clients before I photograph them, whether they are being photographed alone or with a partner, even with family members, eye contact can make or break a photo. So next time you are being photographed, think of how present you are. Where are your eyes? You don’t have to look straight at the camera the whole time, but you must be intentional of where your eyes are going.
Now, this next one is an extension of presence, and that is: vulnerability. An important component in the equation, it allows you to be fully yourself. You may be posing, you may be jumping, running, laughing or even crying but it takes vulnerability to get there and once you do, there is magic GUARANTEED on the other side.
Lastly, creativity. I think of creativity as a dance, it moves and takes different shapes and forms. It takes creativity by the photographer and that’s our job but the people we photograph can also come up with beautiful ways of being that spark something else that can potentially become a once in a lifetime type of image. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve seen clients do something that I didn’t prompt them to do and all of a sudden we’re in MAGIC territory.
These are just three things that I consider important when showing up for photos, any kind of photos: solo, family, couples, weddings. And if I can give you some more advice when it comes to your wedding photo collection is this: Don’t skip the engagement session. This gives us an opportunity to get to know one another and for you to see how we work together and get comfortable in front of the camera ahead of the wedding day.
Just like your wedding photos, these images offer a visual reminder of those wonderful moments in the early stages of your life together. You may not be interested in having couples/engagement photos taken, but keep in mind, this is just a portrait session where you can get to know your photographer and have beautiful portraits to decorate your home.
I recommend choosing a place in nature, a historic area, or somewhere that has significance for you as a couple. I find that the location is just as important to tell a cohesive story. During these portrait sessions, you’ll find that you get more comfortable in front of the camera before your wedding day. I’ve also noticed with most of my couples that even though it’s a bit overwhelming and you may not be used to being the star of this show, you’ll relax and even enjoy this session.
Many couples include their engagement photos at the front pages of their wedding album or buy a separate album. They are also perfect for framing, to create save the date cards, announcements or to simply print as keepsakes. The story of this time in your life is told through images from your engagement and your wedding day.
So what about the wedding day? A little more planning goes into creating magic so I created an entire other post on that, if you’re curious, see best practices.
I hope you enjoyed this post!
“Throughout this journey of life we meet many people along the way. Each one has a purpose in our life. No one we meet is ever a coincidence.”