5 Tips to Make Couples Smile on Engagement Session
Regardless of your work style, you naturally hope to record natural expressions from your customers. That is why in most moments you will need your couple to smile sincerely. It is not always easy; after all, you need to keep in mind that the bride and the groom are not “professional models”. Sometimes, despite of them being tranquil, they might feel uncomfortable in front of you and the camera (which is naturally focused on them). Therefore, when they are too shy, your images might not be as amazing as you wish. Fact is that one of the best way to make the session pleasant and succeed by getting unique pictures is to stimulate their sincere smile. Moreover, there is no rule or “Success Formula” to achieve that, but you can get useful help by using some tips.
1) Feel comfortable in front of the couple
Naturalness must come from you. Simple as it may seem, it does not always occur to everyone. Some less experienced photographers, for example, may feel more nervous when photographing, so being funny and/or natural with customers is a bit difficult at first. But we must focus and create a pleasant atmosphere with the couple, and to approach them sincerely. This is, of course, being yourself! You do not have to pretend, for example, that “you’re longtime friends” and fake an intimacy that does not yet exist. But it is extremely necessary to be friendly, pleasant, open to a really sincere friendship, be interested in the couple’s history and expectations about your work.
2) Love your job
If you work by photographing people, and, therefore feelings, you should certainly enjoy dealing with people! It can not be labeled, but it’s hard to imagine a totally antisocial photographer taking captivating, sincere and sentimental pictures. More than being able to interact with your customers and make them comfortable in front of the camera, you should make clear your satisfaction with your work. Any discontent you have will be visible to the couple and thus it will be impossible to expect them to feel comfortable to smile. Yes, customers should realize your passion for what you do and, in that way, they will once again be assured that they are in good hands.
3) Shoot them quickly
Do not make the couple stay in a position for a long period of time! This will end any kind of fun, naturalness, and will only give them embarrassment. You can not expect sincere smiles for more than a second or two!
4) Do not force the couple to do things/poses that do not match with them
It is necessary to know the personality of the couple to know what “fits” with them or not. Not every couple is 100% romantic, for example. It is essential to take into account the particularities of each customer. Of course this should not restrain your work, which is based on knowledge and experience. For example, let your clients know, in a relaxed way, that some poses may look “weird”, but that they can trust you, because it will result in incredible pictures! If you know, for example, that photographing the couple in the middle of a crowded park will result in some unique records, however they may feel a little shy, tell them to simply trust you! And, of course, smile and embrace the situation!
5) Be yourself
It’s no use telling jokes, unless you’re a good comedian! Be pleasant to the couple, but in your own way. If you are naturally a funny person, who likes to play around with situations, that’s great! But if you are a little quieter, that’s not a problem at all. The only requirement is to be friendly, natural and happy with the work you are doing, so you will certainly make your customers comfortable with you (and the camera), and the laughter from both sides will come as a result! Always remember: the photographer who conveys confidence and happiness in what he does creates a pleasant environment with the couple – who will smile naturally, allowing beautiful and memorable pictures!
Now apply all tips above while shooting a wedding or an engagement session and you will see how better the final result of your images will be improved. Let’s rock!