As a professional photographer, I often get asked for advice on how to feel confident and comfortable in front of a camera. This has also been something I have struggled with in the past and has taken me awhile to feel happy with someone taking photos of me. I mean, we all agree its awkward right? You just standing there, trying to look cute and pose naturally, all the while feeling as though everyone is staring and judging you. It can be downright nerve racking to say the least! Since I have been in your shoes and have experienced this first hand, I thought it might be helpful to talk about a few tips I have learned in how to feel confident and comfortable in front of the camera!
Get to Know Your Photographer
Before your photo shoot, try to get to know you’re photographer. Take some time to check out their website and social media page. If they have a blog, take a few minutes to read what they write about and share with the world. Once you can get a feel for who your photographer truly is the far less intimidating they will be! If your photographer is going to be the one shooting your wedding, it’s a great idea to have an engagement photo shoot with them before your wedding. By doing a shoot prior to your big day, it helps make you and your partner more comfortable in front of the camera, as well as makes a great opportunity to get to know the person that will be capturing some once in a life time moments! Some photographers will offer package deals with engagement and wedding shoots, so be sure to ask for additional details!
Wear Something You Feel comfortable In
If you’re not naturally comfortable in front of the camera, I highly recommend choosing an outfit that you feel comfortable and confident in. I have worked with clients before that have picked out a more “daring” outfit that was out of their comfort zone. When we took a look at the photos the client did not like how she looked in what she had picked out and the way she had posed in it. She stated to me she had felt uncomfortable and lacked confidence. By choosing an outfit that you absolutely love and feel really great in will allow confidence to naturally shine through! When you feel great about how you look and feel in something, your smile becomes so much brighter and your body will pose more naturally!
Know Your Angles
Speaking of posing naturally, do you know your best angles? Obviously it’s my job as a photographer to know what angles compliment the best, but you knowing how you like to look really helps with confidence in front of the camera! Taking a few moments to stand in front of a mirror to see what angles you prefer on your body is really beneficial before your photo shoot! Take a few pictures of yourself, pose a little, get creative and review what you look like. Trust me, once you get used to this it will make it much easier when someone else is taking photos of you!
Understand the Light
If you have ever worked with a professional photographer before, I am sure you have heard them go on and on about evening light. I know it sounds strange that we always seem to want to photograph in the evening on a warm summer night, but it’s totally normal. The light is far more flattering and soft when the sun is setting. By having your photos taken midday when the sun is at it’s highest peak in the sky, leads to unflattering and harsh shadows on your face. Be sure to stick to the golden hour. We want the glow of the radiance you have within, to be what shines brightly!
Ignore the Rest of the World
All too often it is so easy to let the little voice inside take over when you’re having a photo taken. It doesn’t matter if you are surrounded by a lot of people or in the middle of nowhere, just you and me, doubt will start to creep in. You may feel concerned about what others are thinking of you but in reality, most of the time, people aren’t even noticing that there is a photo shoot going on. Most photographers won’t mind if you are shy either, it’s their job to help make you feel more comfortable! So try to forget about the rest of the world and who is around you and just enjoy the moment at hand!
Similar to above and ignoring the rest of the world, it is so important to try and have fun while you’re being photographed! As a photographer I do my very best to try to keep the mood light, entertaining and comfortable. I may not be the classic comedian but I’ve learned a thing or two about making people laugh and loosen up! The more relaxed you are and can let yourself go in a photo shoot, the more confident you will feel and the nicer the photos will turn out!
I hope these pointers will help you feel more comfortable in front of the camera and help build your self-confidence! Put on that perfect outfit you absolutely adore and work your best angles! Photography is meant to be fun and creative so enjoy the experience!