Being a wedding photographer is a tough job. Throughout the day we are quite often required to wear many hats. Of course we are portrait photographers. We are also required to learn the tricks of a food photographer and a product photographer for the details and journalism. It is our responsibility to capture our clients in the best way possible. We have to produce stunning work regardless of any situations we may face. Whether that means the day is running late or the light is horrible.
The very first thing that I do is find a not-too-distracting spot. The light has to be great. This is most likely going to be indoors where the bride and her bridesmaids will be getting ready. Sometimes, if there are too many people in the room, you may want to scout the area and find a better place outdoors. I tend to use a more journalistic approach to this part of the day. I capture the finishing touches and the bridesmaids before they get into their dresses.
Bridesmaids play a huge role throughout the whole of the wedding day so it is vital to capture them in action, whilst I prefer shooting as and when this happens there will be times you will want to pose the bridesmaids for a fabulous getting ready shot so don’t be afraid to do so.
Another amazing moment between the bride and her bridesmaids is the first look, some brides choose a special someone to help her into her dress, so if this is the case you are able to capture the reactions and emotions of the others. Be sure to prep them beforehand and ask them to look when the bride is ready.
When the time comes for the bridesmaid group shots, again you will need somewhere with great lighting and not too much distraction, there are two approaches to these group pictures. I prefer to begin with the traditional bridal party posing and holding their bouquets before moving onto something more fun. When posing a group of girls I tend to get them all to shift their weight onto the back hip and lean slightly towards the bride, this creates a more flattering pose, make sure shoulders are relaxed which will also help to create a more natural looking pose.
Once in position, it becomes easier to guide them for the fun shots. The best way I have found to capture this naturally is by asking them to exaggerate their actions, this alone will usually result in genuine laughter. The most important point to remember is to trust your expertise and never be afraid to ask your bride for what you need in order to capture the images you are looking for.