Photographing the bride and the bridesmaids
One aspect of shooting a wedding is capturing the bride and the bridesmaids. Of course that also brings into context the groom and the groomsmen. But in this article we will be concentrating on the bride and her entourage. The bridesmaids often include best friends, college mates and even best pals at work. So, it is vital that you make sure that the images are super-good. It does not suggest that you can play it easy in the rest of the images. But you can bet your bottom dollar that in all of photos where the bride is present your work is going to be scrutinized. So play it safe and make your preparations well.
The kissing huddle
The bride is the center of attraction. It is her day, period. But the bridesmaids in their colorful attire add to the whole feel of things. They are important too. Make that connection and show that in this photo. Ask the bride to strike a pose in the middle of the frame. Then ask the bridesmaids to gather around. Not just fall in a line but have a couple of them kiss the bride on her cheeks. The others on either side can blow kisses towards her too. None of them are looking at the camera but yet it will be an endearing image from the day.
Compositions where the main subject or the others in the frame are looking away from the camera can be very beautiful. Try this trick when the bride is almost ready and just putting the finishing touches to her getup. Invariably you will be shooting inside a room, so it would be good to have a large window with lots of light coming through it. You could use a strobe / flash but that tend to overdo things. Have the bridesmaids and the bride gather near the window. The bride obviously is at the center. Ask the bridesmaids to pose as if they are helping her to get ready. A few of them could be holding her dress. One of them is helping her put on the earrings and another zipping up the dress. The bride could be smiling and looking away from the camera. The bridesmaids are looking at the bride and smiling. Let them settle into their ‘work’ before pressing the shutter release.
Holding the bouquet over their hands and posing like dancers
There are a million different poses that you can do with the bridesmaids with bouquets in their hands. The key to getting great wedding photos is to stay relaxed, get into the groove of things and get well. Of course you need to know something about posing, lighting and time management. You need to be A+ in people management skills as well.
Holding the bouquet over their heads can be an intriguing pose for the bride and bridesmaids photo. But instead of holding them as if they were doing spring cleaning, ask them to pose in dancing styles. Make an S-curve with one hand on hip and holding a bouquet with the other, and facing sideways to the camera.
Tossing the bouquet
Why always have the bridesmaids hold their bouquet like a formal dress shoot? Toss them around for an interesting shot. But not just randomly toss. Prepare them, keep everything fun and lively and when they are ready – toss!
The pick-up shot
The last technique that I am about to delve isn’t technically a bride and bridesmaids shot but one where the bridesmaids pick up the groom! Now this is something that a lot of photographers are doing and doing quite well. After all if you can have a dinosaur gate-crash a wedding party why can’t you have something funny like this? The only impediment to doing something like this is whether the bridesmaids are not up to the challenge and of course the built of the groom. If he is heavy then don’t risk it. If he is average built and the bridesmaids are up to it (and of course if the bride and the groom agree) go for it.
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