A wedding is a fast-moving, time-crunched event, making arrangement of the perfect poses difficult. With the pressure and expectation to quickly create romantic portraits, it’s helpful to have a few essential poses to fall back on, ensuring you end up with some quality portraits. These poses, which are classic, romantic and easy, should work beautifully for any couple.
Here's 5 poses to ensure perfect portraits on any couple's special day!
Photo via Nicholas Donner
1. Holding hands
When in doubt, a classic hand-holding pose is a sure fire hit for wedding photography. It’s hard to mess this one up.
There are a couple ways to go about it. You can have the couple stand so their hips are 1 or 2 feet apart, forcing them reach just a touch. This works well because the guy's arm is usually longer, but the distance keeps the arms a little tight no matter the length of each arm.
You can also do this in reverse, with the couple looking backward over their shoulders. If the couple is coordinated and natural looking, you can have them walk and hold hands. Adding movement to the shot creates a cool effect and helps to relax couples that are coming off stiff.
2. Head on his shoulder
I like to have the bride come up behind the groom and wrap her arms around him. Then, depending on the height differential, I will have her lean her head on his arm, shoulder, neck or back.
This is a close-up shot, so sometimes I will have one of them bend their knees or stand on tiptoes to get them to just the right level where the closeness doesn’t look awkward.
It’s important the bride doesn't smash her face up against her groom. Guide her in gently resting her check.
3. Kiss on the temple
Kissing shots (on the lips) are tricky. Some couples look awesome kissing. Some look awful—and it’s not because they are bad kissers. Making a kiss look good on camera takes some precision.
But, a kiss on the temple is much easier and looks romantic no matter whether the bride or groom is giving the kiss. All you do is tell them to place their lips on the other’s temple. No puckering. It works every time.
If you find that you are getting too many close-up shots or running out of poses, you can separate the couple a little.
Put one in the foreground and one (out of focus) in the background. Guys, whether in the foreground or background, tend to look good with their hands down at their sides, in their pockets, or leaning on something. Girls, if they are standing, look good with a hand on their hips, folded in front or clasped behind them.
It also might not feel natural, but it looks natural to be pushing their hair back or clutching their dress with one hand.
5. Foreheads together
Having your bride and groom put their foreheads together has been done a million times and sometimes looks really cheesy. But if you do it right, it can work really well.
First, make sure the couple is close—not like a junior high dance—close enough you can tell they are in love. Second, make sure their eyes are closed. Open eyes look creepy when the couple is this close together. Third, choose a natural spot for them to put their hands. Maybe one on the cheek, maybe one on the back of the neck, maybe hands down and out of the frame. Try a few and see what looks best.
These are just the five poses that I’d recommend to start with—the classics.
Why stop with just the basics. Learn the posing, lighting and editing techniques to capture the unforgettable wedding portraits of your clients' dreams in the Craftsy class Wedding Photography: Romantic Portrait Session.