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Posing Wedding Couples

Lesson 6 from: Posing 101: Couples, Weddings and Families

Lindsay Adler

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Lesson Info

6. Posing Wedding Couples

Lesson Info

Posing Wedding Couples

So, the bridal couple. For bridal couple, we have already talked about the essentials of couples, so go watch that first. But, that being said, here's the differences for a bridal couple, and honestly it's not that different except for you do wanna emphasize intimacy a little bit more than you would with a typical couple's portrait. Alright, so let me go through my top five guidelines for photographing a bridal couple together. Avoid smushy kiss pictures and intersecting noses. So a lot of times, because I'll say you want intimacy you want multiple points of interaction, which is something I say in the couples section. When I say this, then people get a little too close. You don't want noses pushed together, you don't want noses over-lapping, and you don't want smushy kisses. So, yes, multiple points of interaction and intimacy, just not smushed intimacy. Number two is, it's not about a million different poses. You wanna try unusual crops and depth of field to make poses look more dyna...

mic and intimate. So it's not that you need to keep doing a bunch of different poses, but crop it in an unusual way. Tighter crops, unusual angles. I think that, particularly for the bridal couple, you use more unusual depth of field and more unusual crops than any other type of portraits. Than any other type of portraits, so bring a bunch of different lenses, try a bunch of different crops that you're not comfortable with, and generally those come across more artistic versus if you did that with another subject. So bring all those to the table. Number three is to use that bouquet to occupy the bride's hands. So you don't always need to figure out where her hand goes. She can just hold the bouquet softly or to her hip. So utilize that to your benefit but it doesn't mean it needs to be in every single shot. Number four is ring hands visible. If you're going to be posing so this,if you're going to be posing with hands. So this makes a difference of who's on what side. Because, for example, left hand would need to go up on the person's chest, so the girl would need to be on this side, if you wanted to be able to see the ring finger. Versus switching, it's not gonna be visible. So, just kind of keep that in mind. And then number five is they paid a lot of money for their suits and they paid a lot of money for their dresses and they want it to look good. So you don't want to pick poses where everything bunches up. You really do have to pay attention to those things and there are a lot of poses you can't do in a suit and in a dress. You can do laying down shots, I would totally wait for that one. I would do it at the end, and just a tip, whenever I'm doing sitting or laying shots, I always have my camera bag, a black garbage bag, and a white garbage bag. Black goes under the guy, white goes under the girl, and I can tuck the edges. If a little bit of the edge sticks out, you can't tell that it's a garbage bag, it just looks like black or white fabric. So I save those for the end, and I also know, you can tell which people don't want to get them dirty on the wedding day. Hold a marketing class, I did a class on fashion flare for Portrait and Wedding Photography. Most clients didn't want to be laying down, sprawled beside the waterfall on their wedding day. But we would do a session afterwards so we could get those pictures. Because those tended to be the pictures they love the most. Because we had time and I got to do more dramatic poses. So on the wedding day, there's a few essential ones, you work your angles, and keep these tips in mind. So, I am ready to shoot this. Let me bring you lovely people out. (heavy footsteps) I'll pass this to you, yeah and I'll have you come on and off with those, alright, perfect. Hi guys! Hi. How are you? Good. Do you know each other?. Yes. Okay, oh you are married. Yes! (crowd laughs) Listen, I've, I felt bad for the last couple. Oh, I wanted to be like, okay lean in for a kiss, but then they might be married and have issues so, good. Excellent, perfect, okay, guys. Well thank you for coming to model for me. Yeah. What was your name again? Eric. Eric. Great to meet you. Great to meet you, too. So remember the sound of a person's name, y'know, the people's names. (audience titters) Okay, except for, I will tell you for bridal parties, I just do mom, dad, gramma, and grampa, I don't have a good enough memory for that. But, I can handle this. All right, so, as I said before, watch the couples section. What I do, making the rounds. So I'm gonna demonstrate that, but this time with a bouquet and this time with a dress so you can kind of see that. And I'm going to shoot it. So here we go. I am going to actually have you stand with your hand in your right pocket. Okay, and you're actually gonna switch sides for me, if you don't mind. Perfect. And I'm going to have you face with your back towards him, okay? And, can you guys just both scoot this way in for the lights, good, and lean together. I'm always watching that he's not stepping on her dress. That's just something to be aware, that happens all the time, and then, they freak. (audience laughing) Okay, awesome, so what I'm gonna have you do is you're gonna nuzzle your head closer to her. And I'm gonna have you close your eyes and turn your head towards her. Next, I'm gonna take that hand out of your pocket and put it on her arm, just like that, great. Okay, so, my first, and making the rounds, in case you didn't see that section earlier, which was yesterday, is I start with the bride with her back to the groom, the bride facing, the bride to the side, and bride behind. So I don't need to remember a million poses I just need to remember to move the bride and shoot different angles of that. That's how I do a ton of different poses and then I just change my focal length and my depth of field I have them look at the camera, I have them look away. I have her look at him, her look at me, him look at her. I just kind of rotate those things and it's not a lotta poses, I'm just like okay, well what can I change? Alright, change her body, where her body is, okay. Next I can change where he's looking. Next I can change where she's looking. I can change a hand, I can change my angle, I can change a lens. Now she moves. Same exact thing. So I can fill an album with just her moving around him. And I don't even need to get fancier than that. We will get a little fancier than that, but you don't need to. So, just like that is great. Perfect. And, can you turn your shoulders just a little bit that way Good, drop your shoulder. Perfect. (camera click) And, okay, my light. I hate it, I have to move it. I'm sorry, it's not a lighting class but it's gotta go. (Class laughing) It's gotta go over here, can't help it. It's like that f-stop earlier, I was like, oh man. Alright, so one more time. Good. Perfect. And, great. (camera click) Okay, perfect. So there's one shot. The next thing I could do, and I'm just gonna show you what I would change. These wouldn't necessarily be my five go-to poses, I'll give you five poses, but this is variation. Okay, so I have a hand up there, so do that again. But this time, you look at me, and your head down, closing your eyes. Perfect, just like that. (camera click) Okay, now both of you looking at me and smiling. Great. (camera click) Now kiss the side of her forehead. Good. (camera click) Perfect. (camera click) And now, what I'm gonna have you do, is can you put your hand up to his face. And you can put your hand on her hip. Perfect. And, you can reach behind a little bit more, just like that. And drop your shoulder, and kick your weight back. Okay. She couldn't reach him before, I don't know if you guys could see that. She couldn't reach him before because she's a little bit too tall. So she was trying to reach his face and it was, her shoulder was too raised. Since she kicked her weight back, she got shorter and then she could elongate everything. So like that's just what I'm looking for. Okay, where's the tension point and what can I do to relax it. All right, so let's take a look at this one. Perfect. (camera click) Good, okay now both of you, turn your heads towards each other. Chin out and down, eyes closed, perfect. (camera click) And right there. (camera click) And so notice I'm like, making my rounds, I can just keep doing that. This is the exact same pose, I've just moved their hands and their faces. That's it, okay, so, just notice that's kinda what I would and kinda move around. All right, so I have her now facing him please. Great. Okay, now. Super essential, one is can you put your hand on his jacket please. And you put your hand on her hip. This is, yes, this is the most basic of poses. The one thing that I don't like, and I think we'll be okay here, the one thing that I don't like (camera click) is take a look at their body language. You said you're married? (Class laughing) I don't really know if I believe you. Are they married to each other? Ooooh (class and bridal couple laughing) Good question. That body language to me is middle school dance. (class and bridal couple laughing) So, see that big gap between the two of them. So I'm gonna put their back shoulders together a little more Perfect, and heads tilted together, all right. And always make sure, no squishies. No squishies ever, he kind of squished his face in, so. Real soft, just like that, great. (camera click) Perfect. Let me open up my aperture a tiny bit. (camera click) All right, so, watch how much better. And, I think he looks a little straining 'cause of his arms reaching over a little bit more. So don't reach your arm quite around, just more on her hip. And a little higher. Yeah, wherever like, pull for comfort Mm-hmm and soft hand, 'kay, good, just like that, and relax your front shoulder. Good. (camera click) Perfect. Okay. So, next thing, your hands communicate kind of what's going on in the photo. So let's make her the aggressor, okay. (class laughing) I want you to grab on to this, okay. Hand up back on her hip, you can let go of your right hand. Good, and kind of pull down and look like you're gonna go for a kiss. Okay, now, turn your back shoulder towards her. And both of you, back shoulders together. And notice, he was doing this real awkwardly. Feet. So you could say, turn your feet in as soon as you see someone moving awkwardly, they've gotta move their feet as well. So, yep. Perfect. And, grab a little softer higher up on his collar. Perfect, all right, right there. And elongate your fingers just a little bit, lemme see a little bit more fingers. Yeah. Good. Perfect. Okay. (camera click) Perfect. Okay, now, I'll tell you some tweaking things. Taking a look at this, I'll have you do it again in a second. Okay, taking a look at this, I see, and first of all ignoring light, where they're looking is at each other, and usually when you are that close, looking at each other is awkward. So you don't usually actually have your couple this close looking at each other. And that's why she's leaning back, y'know that body language there, she's kind of pushing away because you can't focus here so you by default you lean back and then that causes a whole bunch of problems. It can cause, she doesn't have any issues, but it would be double chin, it's body language saying I don't like this person, it's making them shorter, it's the distances. So, when you pose their eyes. And you're going to vary where their eyes are. And so, for example, can you do that again. Perfect. And what I'm gonna have you do is I'm gonna have you put your nose like right here and tilt your head to your right a little bit. Tilt it, this way Oh Tilt it right. Perfect. Good. And he right now is pulling back a little bit, chin out. And tilt your head to the left. Sorry, your right. And then can you bring your chin up just a little bit for me? Chin up even more, okay, good. And close your eyes. Perfect. (camera click) And maybe dip her back just a little bit. And so kind of, there you go. And chin up just a little bit more for me, hon. Good. (camera click) Good. And now I'm gonna have you open your eyes but you look at his ear. Okay. Is that a beautiful ear? That's good. (camera click) Good. (camera click) Perfect. All right, so doing silly things like how's his ear, or like, I don't know it's what you feel like check if he has boogers, like something like that, and then they'll laugh and be like all freaked out. So you can kinda move around for shots like that. Okay, so, I'm gonna do a fashion, more fashion pose. So you face straight towards camera, towards me. All right, so all of this has like been soft, if you want to do maybe more of a bridal fashion look. Same thing, facing him. I'm gonna have you literally face the back wall. So face him straight on, away from me. Good, okay, but you're gonna over-lap, so over-lap your shoulders, like step in front of him. Good. Alright, so you're gonna put your hands soft on his shoulder, on his, the other shoulder. Yeah. Good. Little bit lower. Perfect. Now, kick your hip out, so I'm like building this. Kick your hip out, great, put your hand on your hip. Okay, and now turn your head hard to the left. Perfect. And a little bit lower with that hand. Great. And then can you reach in and soft on her arm, okay. So this is more of a like a fashion pose because remember what I said is fashiony? Triangles. Triangles and negative space. So I've made it a little bit like less soft and a little bit more aggressive. So you look down at her. Perfect. (camera click) And you can do full lengths of these. And can you wiggle your fingers a little softer for me? Good. (groom chuckles) (camera click) Okay. So let's keep making the rounds, we'll just do a couple more. I'm going to have you stand behind him. Okay, but you guys are gonna rotate like this towards your right, like hard right, keep going, keep going, keep going, turn right, keep right. Good. And I'm gonna have you put your hand, your left hand up on him. And I, this is where the unusual crops come in. In each of these, I would do a shot where I basically blur him out and just focus on her, almost crop him out, and then I would kind of switch. And that's how you get all those shots for different album. I didn't really change the pose, but I could do a shot that's full length, but really the poses, can you turn your head back towards her. Good, close your eyes. Good, and if I had narrowed up the field, the pose, can you spread your legs out a little bit, more, more, more, more, good. Good. The pose is really (camera click) on her with him out of focus. Of course this will be in focus, but you'll get the idea. But it would him totally out of focus in the foreground and then her in the background. Okay, so, I'm going to get more creative. That's, I just do the circles, so, it goes, back to him, front to him, on his side, behind him. Every single shot I'm doing straight on, moving to the side. Maybe I get a little bit higher, maybe I switch my aperture. So I get all of those different poses. One more. This is kind of a pose and kind of a shooting technique. Can you face her? Can you put your hand up on his shoulder? Good. Can you tilt your head to your right? Tilt it versus turn it, yeah good. Little less, right there, perfect. Again, with lens choice, I have, I'm just gonna be shooting like 9.0. I would normally shoot this at like 2.0. What I would get is a photo where the ring is in focus and she's out of focus in the background. And so this is a shot that they always got for the album, 'cause it's a, look at this big ring. (light class laughter) So, lemme see, if I switch this, and shoot, lemme see this Let me see what I can get away with. ♪Mmm hmm hmm♪ I'm switching some settings here see if I can get away with this. Okay, good. And will you close your eyes and smile? (camera click) Oh wait, I didn't mean to turn this on, turning it off I'm just gonna do ambient light, 'cause I'm gonna try to do a little bit narrow this in. Let's try this again. (camera click) See if it worked. Okay, so imagine you're shooting like a 4.0 lens or a 1.4 lens, and so in this shot, you'd see her smiling about how awesome her ring is. Basically. (class laughing) Okay. So, if I had like just real quick time, I didn't have a lot of time to do a lot of wedding photos, that's what I would do. I'd make the rounds, change my lenses, I can probably, sincerely, I can probably get off like thirty completely different shots in like five minutes just because I'm moving and switching my lenses. All right, but, we can get more creative and we can do something a little bit more. So, you guys cool with that? Let me switch my settings back here. Oh, God, lots of settings to switch. Do you have a question while I switch these back? Sure, we can come up with something here, do we have anything in the studio audience you guys have been so quiet. Oh yeah, hey guys. Anything at all? All right. I'm ready to go. You betcha. Let's do it. So, one of the questions that a lot of folks have been asking is the fact that, this kind of goes back to our last segment, wanted to know when we use those clamps, do you clamp on a lot of posing, a lot of people like in any and every situation? Well I, it's funny, on my fashion shoots we clamp on almost every single shoot we do. We have the little, little itty bitty clamps but the whole point is that the clothes fit perfect. Its a fashion shoot. So actually we do clamp almost every shot. For portraits? Nowadays I have a stylist so the clothing fits. But if somebody shows up with clothing that doesn't fit, I'll clamp it. If it looks good on them then I leave it, just 'cause people feel like, I don't know, like a dinosaur with spikes. (audience laughing) Like when they have that, so I Yeah I won't do it if it's not necessary. Excellent. Thank you. Okay, I think we've got that, perfect. Can I have the other element? So we're gonna go more creative now. So if you have a couple that you think are a little more daring, willing to try a few more more things, what I usually have them do, or what I ask them to do, is I'll show Okay, there's some danger, if you ask a bride to go look at Pinterest, they'll all look at Pinterest but they'll also say I want that and they don't realize what it takes to get that. But I do like to gauge what they like, 'cause I don't, y'know I could also just say like Oh what do you think about this shot or something. Like I don't over-do it, 'cause then they'll expect those exact poses. But I'll aim for maybe something sitting or I'll say, y'know, y'know I think that's kinda cute, y'know it's kinda, you guys like that? Mm-hmm, yeah It's a little bit, so you know, whatever just kinda gauge their reaction. So I'm gonna have you try that one real quick. And so I picked kind of a a kissing her shoulder kind of pose, see if they're okay with that type of intimacy. Or then I'll say, well what do you think about the laying down pose. 'Cause if I just say laying down, they're like, mmm, I don't want to lay down, I don't want to get my dress dirty, but if they see that, she might be like Oh yeah, that's great, I love that. So, I mean, this is my style, I personally don't mind showing people what I'm thinking and see what they like. Okay, so with you, do me a favor and stand on the other side of her, and can you, does that come off easy or no? Mm hmm. Okay, cool. Thank you. And actually, I'm gonna have you stand on the other side because her hair's on this side. Perfect. So what you're going to do and Iris, I might need a apple-box. Okay, perfect. So you're gonna give me a wide stance or a step, whatever you're more, if you're more comfortable with step you can step. Perfect. So I'm gonna have you turn your head towards him. And you are gonna get even lower and try to just kiss right there, okay? Perfect. Or like look like you're y'know smelling her armpit, or whatever, romantic. Okay now, what you're gonna do is, right now his nose is sitting on her shoulder. So I'm gonna have you tilt your head toward her just a little bit, right there, good. And, relax your shoulders, and chin up a little bit, chin up and out for me, just a little bit, good. (camera click) And I'm going to, let me see if my exposure is even Oh, I gotta turn this on, good. And can you turn your head the other way. Just a little bit, can you turn, yeah, just a little bit. Can you try to kiss her neck a little bit. But instead of tilting that way, tilt the other way your head to your left, yeah, good. And you are going to put your hand up, so, right here, 'kay so I want ring finger. I got that line down. I have him looking intimate and close your eyes, you're look like you're really enjoying it. (camera click) Good. (camera click) Perfect. Okay, so my exposure's a little bit off but I can get something more romantic and you can see her ring finger, something like that. I really do think narrower depths of fields make everything prettier, just sayin' that. Okay. All right, so you guys want to try some more creative shoot shots, okay. So I'm gonna have you sit on the ground. We're gonna do something like these two, okay Cool All right? Cool. So, go ahead and take a seat. Perfect. Awesome. And you're gonna sit over on this side with your legs out. Perfect. Thank you. And I'm gonna lower my light. Perfect. All right. Make sure they're lit. All right, so the most important things photographing people on the ground is watching out for foreshortening. So in this case, his legs are coming straight at me. So he can do one of two things. You can sit with your legs facing that way, and you can kinda just turn them that way and put your knees up if you want, whatever, get comfortable What's comfortable for you? That. That's comfortable? Okay, cool. So you are going to cross in front of him. Okay. Great. And I'm gonna have you unbutton your jacket 'cause right now he sits down and everything clumps up so I'm watching for those details. All right, good? Awesome. All right let me I know you guys can't see'em, I'm sorry. Perfect. Okay, so what I am looking for here I'm like, all right. Let's analyze what's goin' on. She has too much weight on her arm. Soften your arm, okay, you're leaning too much. Perfect. Yeah and you can actually turn your arm and lean on him of you want. You're like, I'm hurting him. Okay, good. You're going to lean back and you are going to lean forward. Perfect. You're going to put your hand soft with her hand. Great. And I would probably shoot can you, I'm looking, foreshortening, right no negative space, I want negative space and elongate. Can you tuck your arm in, just like that, okay. If she doesn't know what to do with her hands, you could put her, okay there. If this hand or this negative space looks unnatural, can I grab this bouquet real quick, I'm going to put the bouquet there, so it'll be nice and soft. And then this, I would work around angles as well. Perfect. And just lay it soft on the ground, that's fine. Perfect, just like that. Great. Let's test. Okay, and can you sit up as straight as possible You're a little hunchy and I don't know if you'll need to sit with your legs to the side, whatever is like gonna make you feel, good, okay, great. And can you pull down your vest just a little bit. Good. Right there's great. Perfect. And can you turn your elbow in more. I'm looking for better lines instead of at the camera. 'Kay. And a little straighter. Great. (camera click) I test my light. Let me open up a little more. (camera click) Good. (camera click) Okay, now, are you ready for a super romantical pose. Yes. Okay, this one is very dramatic. Okay, so what you're gonna do is I don't know how you feel in those, if you feel uncomfortable in your pants, but you're gonna They're really tight (laughing) Shh, don't tell anybody. They are! See, she's giving away your secrets here. Okay, so what you're gonna do is you're going to give her a leg to lean in. So tuck that knee under, if, I don't even know if you can in those? (bride and instructor making uncertain sounds) But it's worth it. Uh, okay, see, this is a nice hubby, okay. Okay, good, so you're gonna lay there, and what you're gonna do, is you're gonna lean so your head is on his leg. Maybe, we'll see. Good. Okay, so what I would do is I would shoot, I'm not gonna shoot this here, but I would shoot a high angle, so that you can kind of see him in the foreground and her recline in the background. Him out of focus looking down at her but then she's the focus, so it's kind of more like the boudoir pose, where I can see her form in the background but he is looking at her from the foreground. So I would do something to that effect. There's another pose if I were getting a little sexier with, leaning up against a wall. If she's leaning up against a wall and he's doing that manly seducing pose (audience laughing) y'know the arm up like, okay I would absolutely do that, if we wanted that kind of dynamic. So this is kind of the order that I do. Really basic, circle around, play with the bouquet and then I do more dramatic things, changing my angles, changing my apertures, all that. So I'm gonna wrap with that, if that's cool. So you guys don't have to be uncomfortable, 'cause I know that looks, you look a little (bridal couple chuckles) It looks like those pants might rip there, it's 'cause how muscular your legs are. Yeah. You must have been like really working out. Okay, thanks guys. Fantastic. Love seeing these couples. Yeah that was awesome. You guys are cute. (loud applause) and thank you for being a couple, so I could like Yes thank you to both of you guys, we really appreciate it. Thank you. Awesome. It's really cool to see how the application for the individuals still comes into play in the couples. It's just you've got Sure. two people to worry about. Mm-hmm. That's great. So thank you very much for this whole segment.

Class Materials

Bonus Materials with Purchase

Bridal Couples
Bridal Parties
Couples - Different Height

Ratings and Reviews


All of Lindsay's courses are great. I enjoyed this course. Lindsay is very informative and an entertaining to watch teach. Lindsay's presentations are always well prepared and she gives it her all. Great job Lindsay.

Santosh Mareddy

Lindsay Adler's Posing That little Queens looks Like Awesome,... Loved it


Lindsay Adler is a Creative Live treasure! Her teaching style is consistent, relaxed, easy to listen to, and to the point. Several times now I've intently watched her various classes "live" only to later purchase the class so I can review it again and again...I've never been disappointed. Thank You Lindsay!

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