In Focus

Expert tips that will take your photos from okay to outstanding

Wedding Flowers: Wedding Ceremony - balls of boxwood,green roses,satin ribbons and twin wreaths of green palmetto leaves,hypericum berries,and stephanotis
  • If your wedding is taking place indoors, decide ahead of time on an outdoor site where you can stop for a few photos between the ceremony and reception. Natural light will add a new dimension to the photos.

  • Vary the background in group shots. Posing everyone—from your college roommates to your nana—in front of the same drapes will mean an album full of predictable photos.

  • Position the wedding cake in a location free from clutter. Look out for distractions like mirrors, exit signs, and swinging kitchen doors before deciding where the cake will go.

  • Instead of posed table shots, which will never be looked at, have your photographer capture guests in candid moments.

  • Dress up the doorway of the church with a colorful wreath or floral arrangement, which looks more appealing than a plain set of wooden doors.

  • You can look slimmer in photos by standing tall, with your shoulders back, leaning forward from the base of your back. Stick your chin out but not up—this will help mask any signs of a double chin.

  • Wear makeup—even if you normally don't—for a polished look in photos. Colors should complement your skin tone and be neutral (brown, taupe, rose). Choose matte formulas instead of those with shimmer or frost, which will come across as shiny in photos.

  • Ask the bridesmaids to remove their watches for the pictures—most timepieces look too casual and clunky when paired with formal dresses. Same goes for multiple earrings and belly rings (believe it or not, the camera will pick up a bump in the gown's fabric).

  • Not every photo has to have a person or a face in it. To capture another angle that still tells the story, your photographer can shoot the best man's hand pinning on the groom's boutonniere or picking up a wedding program, for example.

  • If you're wearing a white dress, carrying all-white flowers, and have a milky complexion, break up the one-note palette with a few colorful blooms in your bouquet.

  • Have the photographer stand on a chair or at an elevated point, such as the church balcony, to get a few shots with a wider view.

  • Don't try to make everything perfect. Working with the elements—like showing the wind blowing your veil—makes for memorable shots.

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