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Photography tips for brides “A message to brides from one who knows”

Photography tips for brides “A message to brides from one who knows”

Photography tips for brides…

Dear Bride-to-be, … Kindest regards, Model. x x x

Having worked on many bridal shoots as a model and involved in several real weddings before, I’ve picked up some Photography tips for brides, things that I hope might help a few others. If you’re part of the wedding industry then please feel free to share this tongue in cheek guide with your clients, whilst understanding that although it’s a bit brazen, it might actually be what they need to know!


Dear Bride-to-be,

Posing for the camera: There are certain photography tips for brides in particular posing tips that apply to all women whether they are wearing a bridal gown or not. However, your wedding day is the time when you’ll really want to put theory into practice and believe me it makes all the difference. Here are my top ten bridal posing tips;

1. Where to hold your flowers – Aim for just below belly button level. Not too high and not too low. This pushes your arms out with a slight bend at your elbow, avoiding crushed skin and bingo wings. It also acts as bonus stomach coverage. #Winning

Photography tips for brides

Above image by Bentham Imaging.

2. Separate limbs – as with the above, keeping your arms away from your body also slims down the thickness of your overall body shape through illusion (see more of these photography tips for brides in a past blog titled Dear Model). This works for men as well as women, although it is less noticeable in a suit and limbs may need to be brought out more obviously.


Above image by Bentham Imaging.

3. Find your waist – when your photographer says “put your hands on your hips”, what they actually mean is your waist. By putting your hands on your waist you elongate your legs and draw attention to your smallest width. Whereas your actual hips are far lower and essentially the widest part of your figure. Look in the mirror and you’ll see, it’s a little cheat that’s priceless to know.

4. Chin chineney chin chin charoo – the brides enemy is her second chin, even the size zero model has one hiding, I promise! Practice by pushing your jaw down and out, whilst stretching your neck and rolling your shoulders back. Obviously there is a limit on how far and you’ll know when too far is too far.


Above: image from Catmonkey.

5. Leaning – if you lean forwards or backwards in a heavily boned corset, it’s hard to avoid back fat and the double-boob-fold-over by the armpits in a strapless dress. It’s really important to find a flattering dress that fits correctly for this reason and tailored to your shape. Try to ensure you can dictate to it where you are wanting to lean, rather than the dress staying in one place and you going in another.

6. Relax – Easier said than done I know, but try to let your face and shoulders relax. If you tense up each time the camera points at you then every shot will show your shoulders around your ears and your bones will be aching by the end of the day. If you’re worried about needing to breathe in then try spanx control undies for a great curvy shape in your dress.

7. Smiling – it sounds really silly to say practice smiling, but hey if it releases good endorphins and makes your life a little better then by all means please do! I’ve found that I can’t disguise a fake smile very well, so I try to do a little laugh before the shot to avoid the typical school photo forced face. If all else fails, just look at your other half and remember what a happy day it is!


Above: one of my portfolio images supplied by Brett Harkness with make up by Zan Atkinson & male model Josh James.

8. Don’t always look to camera – it’s often said by brides that the natural shots are their most favourite. A set up is arranged but then it’s often the in between shots that sell. Well, here’s some news…the ‘set up’ is usually to capture those moments, crafty photographers hey! The ones where you and your guests are naturally smiling and joking together, or when you as a couple are caught in a real moment of love. It’s all in the eyes and you can’t force those looks, so just act as you would normally and I’m sure those moments will be photographed.

9. Pose appropriately – if your photographer has you doing something that you really really don’t like, then do tell them. Most people aren’t used to having their picture taken, so it’s ok to feel shy and a little bit embarrassed at first. But if you really do detest what they’re suggesting, then just have a quiet word and they will move onto the next shot quickly instead of wasting both of your time on something you won’t choose for your album. It’s reasons such as this that pre-comms with your suppliers is so vital and practice engagement shoots come in so handy.

10. Practice with your partner – just like you would for the first dance, it’s ok to practice posing in preparation…and your photographer will probably love you for it! Pre-wedding engagement shoots are a wonderful way to get some casual and natural shots of you both together (perfect for save the date cards actually) and will save so much time with posing direction on the actual day.


Above image by Bentham Imaging.

Bridesmaids: Onto the girls…whilst selecting your besties, remember their breasties. There is no dress in the world that suits everyone. However there are certain styles that hide a multitude of sins and you need to keep this in mind when dressing them with dignity. Big boobed pals are not going to thank you for a strapless number, whilst the skinny minnies aren’t going to be too chuffed with a gaping open neckline. It might be a good idea to get your girls together to discuss what they’d hate before deciding what they’d like, in an attempt to cover the basics.

A small note added – if they wear floor length dresses then you can usually get away with them wearing their own shoes, saving on additional costs that can go towards more wine for the tables! Hurrah!


Vintage: If you’re going down the cupcakes, teacups and bunting route, then it’s a good idea to give your suppliers a more detailed term than ‘that vintage look’. Your make up artist/hair stylist might especially thank you so they don’t get the decade wrong. Ask yourself if you are referring to the 1920’s, 1930’s, 1940’s or 1950’s? Remember, that’s already a forty year span of very different looks regarding era specific trends…and the word ‘vintage’ isn’t exclusive to just those years!

Generally meaning ‘old’ (which to be fair, could be that decaying loaf of bread in the kitchen that you haven’t yet parted ways with), you must decide which type of vintage you want to replicate, so you’re not disappointed with what you’re given. However if you are aiming around the looser term with what may alternately be known as a retro wedding, then Pinterest is a great place to build up ideas spanning various decades and styles.

Shoes: If you’ve arranged with your photographer to go walking in a local park for your group shots and bridal portraits, you may wish to bring along comfortable shoes. Treading on grass in heels is not fun and will soon stain your satin Valentino’s in mud as you sink. Also walking further than three feet takes longer in shoes that you’ve never worn before…and today is when time really is of the essence – a day that you’d rather spend supping buzz fizz and relaxing, than posing for hundreds of smiles with your new Mother in law.

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We hope you enjoyed Photography tips for brides

Guest Blog by Jen Brook