With Valentine’s Day in our midst, it’s a great time to discuss couple portraits—the portraits that capture true love. It is certainly an acquired skill to be able to take photos that artfully and romantically illustrate the unique, unconditional love between two people, but practice makes perfect. Here are some things to keep in mind on your next couple portrait shoot:
1. Avoid the cheesy trends. Tons of different engagement and wedding photos circulate around the web and while certain trends may seem like cute ideas at first, they often just end up looking cheesy. Props, for example, are getting fairly popular, but it’s important to recognize when they become distracting and unnecessary. It’s definitely a challenge to take portraits that are both timeless and original, but it’s worth the extra effort.
2. Make the location magical. The setting of a couple portrait shoot should correspond with the couple’s personality and enhance the unique romantic message of their photos. For example, a large, colorful garden can give the photos a fairy tale feeling, while the fairgrounds of a summer carnival can help set a more fun and exciting mood. A simple location like a community park or a small coffee shop can give your photos a more modest feel if you’re looking for something less dramatic. Plus, editing can heavily manipulate the mood of the photos later, if need be.
3. Eliminate the awkward. Awkward facial expressions or poses greatly distract from the visual goals of any photo—in this case, the love. Most people generally feel a little awkward and uncomfortable in front of a camera and nerves are pretty perceptible in photos, so it’s your job as the photographer to loosen up your subjects and make them feel as natural as possible with their significant other. Remember, you don't need to add anything extra to show their love for each other (like an odd embrace or unnatural pose), they already have it! It's your job to simply capture what's already there.
4. Perfect still needs a photographer's eye. Sometimes if the location is perfectly gorgeous and the couple looks perfectly flawless, it’s easy to think the photos will turn out perfect by default. High quality, artistic photos take a lot of thought and effort, and require a significant amount of work with your subjects. So, don’t let yourself slack off and miss out on good opportunities, keep challenging yourself.
5. Spread the love! Build a friendship with your client couple. Get to know them on a personal level to gain a better understanding and appreciation for their unique love story so you can tell that story more clearly and accurately through your photography.
To help you spread the love, we're also offering a 15% off Valentines day special! Today through Friday, get 15% off any purchase. Just enter "cupid" when you check out, and give your special someone a gift to remember!
Photos and inspiration for this post thanks to Rogue Art Photography, an incredibly talented husband and wife team dedicated to taking beautiful portraits that capture the real, honest love between their subjects. Check out their website to get a full appreciation for the exceptional work they do and to get inspired!