In this post you’ll learn the foundations for posing and how to look best in your wedding portraits
Posing is a carefully curated art. But understandably it’s an art that a lot of couples are nervous about. So, if the idea of beautiful portraits at your wedding seems unattainable, don’t worry, I got youuu honey. After all, unless you are a professional model, you’re probably not used to being in front of the camera for hours on end. So here are my top tips to guarantee you’ll look best in your wedding portraits.
Getting a good night’s sleep and avoiding alcohol are key to great photos. I know this might be difficult considering you are likely doing a rehearsal dinner, or maybe this is part of a honeymoon trip, but hear me out! Alcohol dehydrates you; dehydrated skin isn’t pretty and your face will look bloated. No amount of photoshop is going to help that! & we all know what happens when you don’t get enough sleep (hello dark circles and bags) so go to bed early honey!
In my opinion, the biggest hindrance to looking your best in your wedding portraits is being too stiff. Even if you are not being prompted, it helps to make slight movements with your eyes and hands, and shifting your weight.
As I previously mentioned, movement is one of the most important ingredients in a great wedding photo. If you look at a professional photoshoot, one thing they all have in common is the models are constantly moving and shifting, even if ever so slightly.
You’re a beautiful, living, breathing being, not a stiff mannequin, so move around as much as possible, in whatever way feels natural! Slight sways, redistributing your weight, slowly shaking your head or changing where you are gazing, all translates into effortless and natural poses, with lots of variety for me to work with!
Yeah, you read that right. This is an industry secret! When we kiss normally, we pucker our lips; this is a natural way to smooch. However, this translates to you looking like a fish in a photo (& I like my fair share of salmon but I’m not when I’m photographing my clients hehe). Instead, when you feel like giving your partner a wet one, smile big and lean in. Get so close together and almost kiss. Trust me, this is the shot you want to print and frame later.
This one is super important if you want to look best in your wedding portraits. It’s all about the angles babyyyy. No, but really it is. Standing at a 45˚ angle to the camera gives an illusion of depth and will make you appear much slimmer than standing straight on. Seriously try it in the mirror! It’s crazy what a slight adjustment in your stance can do.
They say every relationship should be 50-50; but the same isn’t true for weight distribution in photos! If you are going to stand directly facing the camera (or facing away) make sure your weight is unevenly distributed or your pose will look unnatural. Essentially, you’ll want to cross one leg over the other or put more weight on your back leg. This has been a secret hack of instantly slimming models in photos for years! Don’t overthink this though, it is simply how you’d look if you were about to start walking backwards 🙂
When posing together, your spine should be relatively straight, but try to avoid it being stiff and unnatural. This is sometimes difficult if you or your partner is either much taller or much shorter than the other, so try to lean against each other instead of hunching.
Great posture goes a long way in making you look more fit and feeling more confident.
“My arms look fat!” How many times have you heard, or said that one? It’s such a common complaint in photos, and such an easy one to fix! The key to posing your arms is to keep them away from your body so they’re not smashed against your torso, causing them to photograph wider than they actually are. So keep your arms nice and slim by keeping them ever so slightly off your torso.
Overthinking is the death of creativity so I forbid you to do it.
You found your forever person and just got MARRIED! Let’s not forget why you’re here in the first place! Take a moment to breathe and just look into your partner’s eyes. Remember all the moments that have led up to this and how in love you are.
Of course everyone wants that fabled “shot”, but the shot will come when you really let down your guard and focus on each other. Don’t be too shy to act silly, make each other laugh, or dance around! Also don’t forget to get cuddly and romantic, you’re newlyweds after all!
Want to learn more about how to look best in your wedding portraits? Check out some inspo in my portfolio!
I’m Masha, a wedding, elopement and couples photographer based in sunny Hawaii, & often found serving couples worldwide.
If you're looking for a meaningful, cinematic and editorial approach to photography-something effortless but still iconic, you're in the right place. I am so excited to hear more about your story and create and collaborate with you.
Let's chat, I can't wait to hear everything you are dreaming up.