You may or may not like being in front of the camera, but let’s face it, you have to get in front of it for your wedding day otherwise you will never remember the joy that you experienced on that special day. Follow these tips as best as you can, and I can guarantee you that you will improve how you look in your wedding pictures by at least 10 times. We will start from head to toe, quite literally, and go over little things that you can do to make huge improvements in your pictures. This is a comprehensive list of 21 tips and will be broken down into 4 different parts, so please check back in a few days from now for the 2nd part.
So without further ado, let’s jump right into some tips that I give my brides (and grooms) on how to look their best in their wedding or engagement pictures, regardless of how comfortable they are at taking pictures:
1. Get a hair/makeup trial:
It is absolutely a MUST. Don’t leave anything to chance on your wedding day. Make sure to have at least one trial with your hair and makeup artist and make sure everything is the way you want it. I highly recommend adding a Bridal Portrait session (more on this topic later in my Blogs) with your photographer. It is a great opportunity to see how you look in my professional camera with your hair and makeup and make any necessary adjustments for the actual wedding day. It is one thing to take a picture of your trial run with your iPhone camera, and it is a whole different story to take it with my professional camera and lighting.
2. Smile with your eyes, and practice, practice, practice:
How many times have you seen a person smiling but it kind of looks fake? We all know what that looks like but may not be able to pin point what it is in our brains that allows us to recognize a fake and a genuine smile. Research shows that besides the facial muscles involved in smiling, eyes play a major role in signaling to others that you’re truly smiling or not. Try covering the mouth on a smiling picture and just see the eyes. Can you still tell the person is smiling? If yes, then that is a genuine smile.
On your wedding day you may feel like smiling a lot, or for some reason you may feel stressed out or pressured and the smiling may not come to you naturally. No matter! You can master your smile before your wedding day so that it comes to you automatically, no matter how you’re feeling at the moment! Let me explain:
Try to smile with your eyes and not your mouth. It is absolutely essential that you master this in front of the mirror before your shoot. If you’re a fan of the show: America’s Next Top Model, then good for you! You may already know a lot more about this than you think. If not, try printing a picture of your favorite celebrity and taping it to your bathroom mirror. Try looking at it every morning and trying to mimic that smile and genuinely feeling it on the inside. Do this for at least 90 days and I promise you will master your smile, no matter how you feel on the inside.
3. Relax, reset your face:
Your face is made up of muscles, just like your arms. Try holding up an object above your head for 15 minutes and you’ll feel the muscles cramping. Your face will also get tired after long periods of smiling on your wedding day. So every once in a while relax your face and let it rest. Unfortunately, you won’t be able to massage it (or you will start looking like you were going for a Halloween theme with your makeup) A good way to get the blood flowing through your face would be to squeeze your eyes and mouth shut really tight, and squeeze all of your facial muscles really tightly for a few seconds (as if you had just smelled your least favorite smell) and relax, then repeat a few more times.
4. Take the glasses off if you can:
This one is more flexible. If you can, it is best to take off your glasses in your wedding pictures, especially to avoid glare or unwanted shadows around your eyes. However, if you must keep them on, then ask your wedding photographer to not use direct flash.
5. Blinkers feel free to blink:
If you are a blinker, don’t worry. In fact, don’t even think about trying to keep your eyes open because it usually turns out to look strange. Unless your wedding photographer is using an old school film camera, there is no need to worry. Most professionals nowadays use DSLRs which can take super fast shots in a row and are bound to get at least one shot of you before you started closing your eyes.
That’s all for the first section of these tips. Tune in later for the next parts coming in a few days. As always if there is anything I can help you with, don’t hesitate to shoot me a text or email. I’m always here to help!