Posing Tips

Before I got married, I fully intended on researching posing tips. I wanted to make it as easy as possible for all of my vendors to look as awesome as they could. I wanted to pick beautiful locations, use gorgeous accessories, and pick the right dress for my figure.

Well, the dress wasn't actually designed the way I asked for it to be... (Something I didn't notice until the day of.) All of the extras were not necessarily where I wanted them to be... And my flowers were falling apart... I don't really think any amount of research could have saved the pictures. I skipped breakfast, because I couldn't find time to eat the fruit and pastries my sweet husband (then fiancé) brought to the wedding site, and I was so concerned about not moving too much while holding the bouquet and holding the bouquet in such a way to "fix" the part of my dress that made me most unhappy that... I'm pretty sure, if you saw me just after the wedding, I was totally losing blood sugar and brain focus. No amount of modeling knowledge can fix that. Once you check out, your images are doomed.

Enough about me. Let's talk about you, and the things you (a bride) need to know about posing for your wedding day.

First and foremost: Screw before-wedding pictures sessions. If you went to bed late the night before (which you probably did), make certain you eat something for breakfast. Tell your family or wedding coordinator prior to the day of to make sure you eat something. My bridesmaids were off doing who knows what while I was getting photographed, so I didn't have a chance to wander off to get breakfast. I also didn't have anyone really around to get it for me. I wish I had excused myself, which is definitely what I encourage you to do. It will take all of 5 minutes. I promise. A piece of toast, an apple... I don't really care what you eat or how much. Just eat something. Promise me. Ok? Ok. :)

Second thing: Try on your dress a few dozen times before the wedding. Don't wait for alterations days. If your mother isn't a fashionista, take a friend. Take someone that knows something about sewing. Take someone you are comfortable confiding it. When you are trying on the dress, whether alone or with someone, be honest with yourself about how you feel and how it makes you feel. If I had been honest with myself, I would have known a few days after picking up my dress that it wasn't exactly styled the way it was when I initially tried it on. I could have had the situation fixed. Or at the very least complained to management. Unfortunately, 3 months later is just a little bit too late to complain. The day after you get married, you cannot "fix" the situation. If Justin had been with me at the alterations, I can guarantee you my dress would have been perfect. He knows enough about sewing and my style (and my personality) to determine when I am content and when I am not. So, although I'm being a bit long winded, try on the dress/suit/whatever a million times until you are completely satisfied with the way you look. It will give you confidence and make you feel beautiful which will reflect in your photos.

What I said about the dress goes for the hair and make up as well. Have one trial... or twenty. Get it right. You deserve it.

Now for the actual posing techniques:

1. Smile with your eyes. Be happy; be excited! Maybe you could care less about spending one more day with your significant other, but what about all of your friends and family?! They came to see you! Doesn't that make you feel special? They didn't go to someone else's party, they didn't go grocery shopping, they didn't even stay home to clean house! Maybe they just came for the food. Who cares? They like you, and they came to spend time with you. So even if you are having the most serious conversation of your lifetime, your eyes should be happy. They should glisten. :)

2. Turn 45 degrees to the camera to lessen the wideness of your appearance. You may naturally be a stick... or maybe your not. It doesn't matter. If you look straight on to the camera, the likeliness of you looking wide is... likely.

3. When your man is sitting and you are standing behind him for a picture, drap your body. Don't lay on top of him like a sack of potatoes, but gently rest behind him. I'd like to say it's ok to stick your butt out, but this really depends on the photographer and the likeliness of them to capture that part of you. I guess if they do, just send me the picture and I'll crop it for you. :) If you have draped over your man correctly, a cropped image will still look great.

4. Maintain ballet hands. Use the claw (or c) shape when placing your hand up near your face. Whatever you do, DO NOT rest your hand against your face. Support your face with your neck and your hand with your wrist. If you support your face with your hand, you will flatten your face making it look distorted and your picture will look awful. Don't do it.

5. Same with your arms. Keep your arms slightly away from your body at all times. When you hold your arms super close to your body, the skin flattens and you will look like you have a fat arm. Bad idea.

6. Allow your man to wrap his arms around your arms when he comes in for that behind you hug. I know it is natural to want to place your arms above his, but don't do it! By keeping your arms under his, he looks strong and protective and makes you look smaller. I think that's a win-win situation. What man doesn't want to look stronger? What woman doesn't want to look skinnier?

7. Use the foot that is furthest from the photographer. Placing weight on that foot will help you to look skinnier.

8. Another trick is to stick your chin out and up towards the photographer so that your face is closest to the camera lens. It draws attention to your face in the image and elongates your neck making you look... what else? ... skinnier. :)

9. Finally, use your shoulders. Line up your chin to your shoulder when your photographer is getting a side shot of you. It forms a nice line in the image and makes the image look good. (I'm sure it makes you look good too!)

So there you go!

I have limited time today otherwise I would include sample images. If you get confused, just leave me a comment below and I'll answer you as quickly as possible. Another great source is watching Sue Bryce on Creative Live. She has great suggestions!

Happy Wednesday!

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