IS IT POSING OR DIRECTING?
I have always taken pride in saying that I don’t “pose” my brides. And it.s true. But I do direct. And there is a difference!
To begin, I do not bring a shot list. I don’t. I’ll post an article about that at some point, but here’s my thinking when I first arrive on scene. I observe my brides, their details, their family. I can almost immediately understand their personalities. Or the anxiety within the room. I’ll make mental notes of what I’d like to see from my couples the images. I am always watching – almost studying my brides and along with the interactions with their family and of course the interactions with their new husbands. If I see something – a look- or a gesture and I need it to be recreated, I will recreate the situation, not the instruction to recreate what I’ve just seen. You can fake emotion. So I won’t share the precise shot I was looking for. This way the shot is entire natural. The image photographed captures the emotion. All because I didn’t “pose” it. It really did happen naturally. I just saw something I really thought was a great moment, and set out to capture it. And magically, it always works. It just does. If I told her that I liked the look she made, and re do it please, I think we all can agree, it just won’t happen, regardless how much we try. I keep the flow going, constantly observing the nuances that occur naturally.
I understand people, and their behaviours. I love learning what makes my couples tick. I love the sociology of human interaction. That’s my secret.
Often I’ll put people in a situation or setting with an idea of what is going to happen next. My couples don’t know.. they;ve never done this before. Especially on a wedding day. And with some distance, using a long lens, my couple feels secluded. Like no one is watching. Then they talk, they laugh, they kiss…. whatever. It’s all being photographed. They were directed to ignore me, and just be themselves. “Hang out for a while”. Once they relax, the emotions come out.. It’s very real. And for me, it’s very predictable.
My images are beautiful, because of the couple, because of the moment, because of the technical skill needed to achieve the image, but most importantly because of my vision. It’s a vision of “what is beautiful”… “what is wedding photography” and most of all, “what will make my couple look the absolute best”. I do it at every wedding I photograph. Every time. And that is my secret to becoming a great wedding photographer.
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