Tips for Wedding Portrait Photos You'll Cherish Forever

Find out how to make sure your photographer captures beautiful bridal portraits and photos of you and your spouse on the wedding day.

Maya Myers of Maya Myers Photography shares her expert advice on both classic and photojournalistic wedding portraits, as well as how to pose to ensure you look your very best!

Photo: Maya Myers Photography

One of the most key wedding photos you’ll want your photographer to capture on your wedding day is the classic wedding portrait. Whether you want formal coverage of your nuptials or a more candid photojournalistic approach, I highly recommend having classic portraits of you and your partner – both alone and together – on your photographer’s list of must-take shots. 

Do I Need a Formal Wedding Portrait? 

Even if you are not a fan of posed portraits, keep in mind that I make a note to capture a classic portrait of every couple I work with. Of the many homes I’ve visited throughout my life and onto my 15-plus years as a wedding professional, I’ve seen across the board that simple, elegant, classic portraits are not only appreciated, they are framed and placed in albums by families of the couple, the couple themselves, and furthermore adorned by future generations as a timeless heirloom. 

“The Juice” Moments 

The photographs that capture moments that can literally represent your entire day in just one shot – what I call “the juice” moments – are captured in motion, when you are not thinking about the camera. Though they’re not formal portraits per se, they’re an important part of the wedding album and ideal for those modern couples who don’t love the formality of classic portraits. These special photographs are captured when you are completely present in your experience – walking down the aisle as husband and wife past your loved ones or simply enjoying your gorgeous wedding dress, for example. These are the images that matter most from your wedding day. 

How to Pose for Wedding Portraits 

I often get asked by couples – especially those worried about looking their best on their wedding day – “What can I do to look more relaxed?” or "How will you pose me on my wedding day?” Here’s my not so secret little secret:

All of the wedding photos you see here – and likely 90% of the images you see across websites, magazines, and social media – are real couples and real brides just like you! All of these pairs have one thing in common: they trusted their photographer! Put the responsibility on your wedding photographerto make you look fabulous, naturally. Enjoy your day, and enjoy that dress! Move in your bridal gown like this the only day in your life you’ll get to wear it, because it is! 

While growing up, after every life story I told my grandmother, she’d respond with “and are you having fun?” This is what I carry to each and every couple’s wedding that I photograph. If you are having fun on best day of your life and if you are working with the right photographer, that energy will be captured perfectly. Your own wedding photos will look like the images you’ve fallen in love with while wedding planning, and they’ll be even more beautiful because they’ll be of you! 

Your wedding photographer should know what to do and how to direct you in a way that you’re not ‘posing,’ you will truly be in your element, authentic, and beautiful. Trust me when I say this: If you enjoy your wedding as you are meant to, you will radiate beauty inside and out. 

We as photographers know our skill. We know how to direct and work with the light and environment presented – or accentuate it as needed, so your only job is to enjoy your day, cherish these times with your beloved and loved ones, and most of all, celebrate. Enjoy every minute of your wedding day, and let us worry about making sure those moments last forever!