creating an atmosphere first
It’s important to note that while you are the one giving instruction, you need to leave plenty of room for interpretation. Your couple expects you to be the one directing the shoot, and you should be, but directing and manipulating are two very different things.
This is a field guide that will hopefully help you, as the photographer and director, facilitate comfort and confidence in your couple.
By creating a relaxed and trusting atmosphere, you’re allowing your couples to open up and be vulnerable with you. This is incredibly important and will make or break your ability to photograph the couple in an authentic and organic way.
Before I start shooting I want to make sure expectations have been set. This means they should know exactly what I’m looking for as I’m shooting them. This communication will 100% make or break your shoot. If they don’t know what you’re wanting from them then they will become self conscious and and uncomfortable - it’s a downward spiral from there.
I tell my couples that I’m just an invisible 3rd wheel barking suggestions and dad jokes from behind a bush (usually this is literally true). I tell them their focus should ALWAYS be on each other, not me, using their hands on each other and always be cuddly! Use words like “melt” and “lounge” to describe how you want them to be with each other.