I’ve had something eat at me for some time now, and I wanted to take a little time to talk about it.
Getting comfortable in front of the camera.
It’s huge, and it can make or break a photography session. It’s about letting yourself go, and some people have a much harder time at this then others. In the past 3-4 years I’ve gotten pretty good at reading peoples emotions, and in some sort of way I mirror those emotions while I’m photographing someone. I can tell if a person lets themselves go, or if they are so tied up in over-thinking things that they are truly not there.
If someone is relaxed and carefree, I myself open up even more and get the inspiration to create even more amazing portraits. If no matter what trick I try someone is still tense and uncomfortable, I close up with them. It feels like a black hole that is slowly swallowing me up. It’s extremely rare when I can’t get someone to open up, but when that happens it feels like I’ve failed as a person and photographer.
So I just want to tell everyone…if they are having a session done by me or another fantastic photographer…just relax. A camera isn’t going to kill you, no matter how much we use the word “shoot”. 🙂
Being in front of the camera isn’t easy, don’t get me wrong…but it would be so much easier if you just let yourself go. Don’t worry about how your arm looks or if it’s your “good side”, spend all of that energy showing the person you love just how much you care for them. Take a deep breath and remember your first date, your first kiss, the first time you rolled your eyes at them. Rest your foreheads together and think of the last time you did that naturally. Probably just after giving them a huge hug and smile because you missed them so much. Maybe you put your hands in their back pocket when you are walking up stairs or maybe you make funny faces at each other after an inside joke. Pay attention to that during your session, not if you are going to get that perfect background or photo you saw on Pinterest the night before.
Don’t rush though a pose I might suggest, but instead cuddle like you would normally do on a random Tuesday night. If you normally kiss him on the head or pinch him on the backside, do it. Don’t let me stop you.
And while you guys are just showing each other how much you care, I’m just in the background doing what I do best. Finding the good angles and showing off how amazing you look together. That’s my secret, I just need you guys to be in love.
In 50 years you won’t look at your “not perfect” legs or your “not perfect” weight. (Actually, I will put good money on you thinking you looked pretty hot in 50 years time. ) Instead you are going to love the photo because it represented a time in your life when you were getting married to the person you love. The memories will flood back and you will remember how you used to hold hands, or rest your head on his shoulder.
Take a deep breath and just relax. I got this. I love my job when I get to photograph pure, relaxed, happy love.