Getting Great Expressions and Candids

Not only do you want great poses, you also want great expressions when you take your pictures. You want to look back on the picture and feel the aura of the day. There are several ways you can get better expressions that I detail below.

Exaggerate your expressions.

The more you exaggerate your expressions, the more your emotions will be visible to the camera. Dare yourself to go over the top with your expressions! Getting great genuine expressions can require you to be more expressive than you are in day to day life. The expressions in the picture become the average of your normal range and the exaggerated expressions you give the camera.

Move Your Body to Match Your Expression

This goes hand in hand with exaggeration. You want to move your body in ways that are photogenic and that align with your expressions. This will frequently mean moving your body in exaggerated ways that are foreign and uncomfortable to you. That’s ok! Go with the flow of the picture. Let yourself and your body look silly. See what you like and what the photographer likes. Trust that you’re going to find something that works well.

Bring Your Friends

Some of your friends brings out the crazy in you (you know who I’m talking about ;)). Other friends bring out your depth and passion. Different friends bring out different sides of you. They take you through an entire range of emotions. Keeping these friends around you will help you get fun candid moments and a range of different expressions and emotions. Practice expressions with your friends. It’ll feel less awkward when you practice together. Become aware of how your friends get you to react in certain ways. Can you poke your own buttons to get those expressions?

Listen for Feedback

As you pose, make full use of the feedback you receive from the photographer and your friends. Your friends will help you feel more comfortable. The photographer will often direct your expressions. What if they don’t? Make sure you have your friends there to hype you up, and listen for the photographer’s reactions.

In the pictures below, the couple started out feeling intimate but not looking intimate. Listening to our feedback gave them a picture that was reflective of the way they felt about each other. Use all of this information to try new expressions and keep improvising!

Make a Game of Getting Expressions


Have some fun getting these expressions! Make a game of it with other people who are and aren’t in the picture. Doing this helps you forget that you’re in front of a camera, and you begin to improvise. All you see are your friends and the people around you. Your guard drops, and expressions come much more naturally. Get competitive with your friends and one up each other’s expressions!

Pose Continuously

Put another way, keep improvising. As you keep moving and improvising, let yourself relax. Fall into a rhythm of movement that feels natural and organic. Regardless of whether or not the movement is photogenic, keep moving and reduce the pressure on yourself. Take feedback from the photographer and your friends and incorporate it into your movement. The rhythm you create here leads to a confidence in front of the camera that allows you to open yourself for the camera and get confident, bold expressions!

Moving and improvising continuously allowed this couple to relax into not just a great pose but also a great, captivating expression. Their starting pose was already pretty good. The simple act of sliding her hand down his arm transformed it into a great expression that really captured their relationship!

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I’m passionate about helping you achieve your wedding day vision and capturing your story as a couple through my lens. I like self-development, copywriting, and photography…

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