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13 Tips for Couples Photography Sessions

May 23, 2024

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When it comes to couples photography, the goal is to showcase the bond and intimacy that you share with your partner. That’s why I’m here today to share tips for couples photography so you can have the best session possible.

As a photographer, I’ve captured so many love stories with my camera, including couples photoshoots ranging from weddings, proposals and anniversary sessions, to engagements and even those “just because” sessions. Over the years, I’ve learned some tips that will make prepping for your photoshoot feel easy.

From coordinating outfits that don’t feel “matchy-matchy” to selecting locations that mean something to you both, I’ve got you covered. Join me and learn about the best tips for couples photography to make sure that your session is not only smooth but also unforgettable.

Advice & Tips for Couples Photography

Include your photo session as the prequel to your date night

First things first (this is one of my favorite tips), consider including your photo session as the prequel to your date night. Schedule your session right before you go to dinner, see a show, or even make an entire date night out of the session. You could even make it a date afternoon if that’s more your thing (and if that works better in your schedule).

Doing this and choosing to make the session a special occasion that celebrates your bond is going to bring about great energy for capturing the love between you both in the most natural way. It can really help to enhance the affection between the two of you in front of the camera, too, while also making you both more relaxed.

Have secret jokes on hand for the session

You can also consider having some secret jokes on hand for the session. Be sure to keep these jokes to yourself until the session so that you can just say it in the moment and catch your partner by surprise! (These can result in some great candid photos between the two of you.)

This tip, in particular, really works as a great ice breaker, removing any tension or awkwardness between the both of you. Plus, candids are always a lot more memorable in most cases than posed shots.

Connect with touches or embraces

Next, always connect with a touch or embrace. Be sexy, be adorable, be whatever connects you and creates part of your intimacy. The power of touch is so important and can showcase your bond in an intimate way.

This connection, whether it’s just holding hands, hugging one another, or sharing a soft kiss, shows off the emotion between the two of you. Plus, they can really be relaxing, helping you both to feel more at ease in front of the camera. 

Focus more on each other than the camera

This tip might be harder to follow, but come with the intention for the session to be about each other and not about the camera. It will help to focus on the most important reason for the session, and it will come through in your photos. 

This will help you both feel more authentic and allow me, as your photographer, to showcase the natural chemistry the two of you have. When you take the time to engage with each other, you’ll forget about the lens and live in the moment. I’m really just here to document your love!

Trust your photographer to guide you through discomforts

Trust your photographer to guide you through any discomforts; this is crucial. I will be there, guiding you through anything that comes up. There’s a beautiful duality in couples that I appreciate. There is an independence in each individual, and then that something special that brings it all together. 

Coordinate outfits but don’t match

I know it can be hard to resist the temptation of coordinating outfits completely. However, the goal is not to match 100% with one another. Instead, you want a nice balance, while still both dressing at the same level. 

For instance, if one of you is in a fancy blazer with matching pants, then the other should dress in the same style. Meanwhile, if one of you is in your favorite band t-shirt with jeans, the other should be just as casual. Mismatching the level of your outfits can cause a disconnect in the imagery. However, rules are sometimes made to be broken…..if you’re showing an opposites-attract type of relationship, feel free to bring that into your session to further tell your story. Generally speaking, however, when creating a cohesive image, the tips of dressing in complementary styles work best!

Select complementary colors, textures, or even themes in your looks, too. This can help you to look balanced without feeling overly staged or uniform. 

Pick a location that means something to you both

Choosing a location that holds significance to both of you can be a great way to add more of a personal touch to your couple’s photos. This meaningful setting could literally be anywhere. Some ideas include where you first met, your favorite weekend spot, or even a spot that ignites both of your passions.

By picking a location that’s meaningful, you may also feel a lot more calm in front of the camera, which, as you’re probably catching on by now… is a good thing!

Communicate your vision (if you have one) to your photographer

If you have a specific vision for your couple’s photos, be sure to let me, as your photographer, know. It can also be helpful to know where you plan on using the photos. For instance, if this is an engagement session, are you planning on using these photos on your save the dates for your wedding?

If you have any specific ideas, themes, or even emotions you want to make sure get photographed, it can be so helpful to tell your photographer. I love taking artistic photos, and this will give me the opportunity to take your vision and mesh it with the artistry that I’ve built up over the years.

Keep an open mind

Try to keep an open mind during your photos. As a photographer, there’s a lot of experience and creativity that I have, and I might randomly see the possibility of a unique shot in the middle of the session that you might not notice. Have an open mind and be receptive to any guidance I might have throughout the session.

Bring backup essentials

It’s always better to be overprepared than underprepared! Try to bring backup essentials if you can. This can include an extra outfit (more essential if we will be outdoors and the weather is unreliable), makeup for any touch-ups, and maybe even a change of shoes if you don’t think your footwear is that comfortable. 

This can allow you to be fully prepared for any unpredictable moments that are out of your control, like uncomfortable footwear or unexpected weather.

Experiment with poses

Another of the best tips for couples photography is to try experimenting with different poses. Yes, there are some traditional couples poses, but sometimes playing around with different angles or even levels of intimacy can result in a really unique photograph.

Again, this is something that, as your photographer, I will help guide you through! But, the openness to experimenting can really result in some couples photos that are truly beyond the ordinary and speak to your unique bond with one another.

Consider implementing shared interests or props

Can you implement any shared interests or props into your sessions? This is a fun way to add some personalization. Whether it’s a hobby you both have (maybe you love watching New York Yankees games on the weekends…or is one of you a Boston Red Sox fan?!?!! There’s a story right there!) Or there may be another unique aspect of your relationship that can add a whole other layer of storytelling to your images by using them to our advantage. 

Plus, sometimes, having props or implementing an activity can give you something else to focus on during the session, which, again, will only make you more comfortable.

Enjoy the moment

Last but certainly not least, be sure to actually enjoy the moment. This is your couples session, after all! Let go of any self-consciousness or other thoughts and emotions you might have. Really, leave them at the door if you can. Focus on just you and your partner, and let yourselves be as natural as you can so that I can photograph your relationship exactly as it is.

Final Thoughts: Couples Photography Tips

Hopefully this post has helped you to prepare for a couples session. From keeping jokes to tell during the session to sharing intimate touches, each tip I’ve shared can really help change the trajectory of your couples photoshoot.

At the end of the day, the goal is to create images that are meaningful to the two of you and showcase your bond. If you are still looking for a photographer in NJ or NYC to capture the love between you and your partner, I’d love for you to get in touch. Click here to contact me.

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