As a portrait and wedding photographer, you have got a lot to think about and have a lot of responsibility. You must consider exposure, composition, lighting, lens choice, flattering the subject and posing. On an engagement session or wedding you are capturing one of the most important days of a person’s life. Now, add on top of that you may have a very limited time to capture these images! It is a lot to think about!
When I was first photographing couples, it seemed overwhelming to manage all of these things AND to remember a wide range of poses. I always wanted to capture a variety for use in the album, or in a guest book, or a wall cluster, or simply to give the couples a variety to choose from. When the time came for me to photograph the couple and I only had a few minutes to do so, I seemed to only be able to remember 2 or 3 different poses! I tried to remember 10 or 15 poses, and they never seemed to ‘stick’ especially when I was under pressure.
A lot of stress and many years later, I eventually developed a system to help me create endless posing that worked naturally while I was shooting. Most importantly, it helps me remember lots of poses in an extremely short time-frame. I’d like to take some time to share the method I have developed to be sure that I have a wide range of images to provide couples for their wedding albums or engagement announcements.
I call it “Making the Rounds” for couples’ posing, and it doesn’t require you to ‘memorize’ poses, but instead just make a few variations!
Put simply, I have the man stay relatively stationary while I move the woman around him. From there, I adjust hands, head position and eye contact to create ‘new poses’ and then vary my lens choice and camera angle to create entire new shots. Quite honestly, I can make dozens of drastically different images in just a couple minutes!
Let’s take a closer look.
The man will stay in a relatively stationary pose, more or less straight on toward camera. Now we will pose the woman around him (hence, “making the rounds”).
1.The woman begins with her back to his chest.