My fiance and I took our engagement pictures this weekend with Debbie from North Island Photography at Mill Pond Park on Long Island. Talk about fun! We didn’t know from the beginning that it would be as successful as it is. Fact of the matter is my fiance is camera-shy. He feels that moments should be lived, not posed.
So we had an issue. In our culture, it is very common to hire someone to “capture” images on your wedding day. Taking engagement pictures is critical for two reasons: First, you become familiar with the photographers style before your wedding. Second, your family and bridal party can see the results and be familiar with the photographers style. Since we were going to take engagement pics, we needed to help him over this anti-camera thing.
My best friend is a psychologist and often encourages me and others to experience “flooding” which is a psychological technique of overcoming fear. The thought is that you do the thing that scares you frequently over a short period of time. Although it may be exceptionally uncomfortable as you’re doing it, you manage to overcome the anxiety associated with the activity. Engagement pictures were a great flooding technique for my camera-shy hubster.
Here are 4 things that we did to make sure we had a successful engagement shoot for the anti-camera inclined:
- Look good, feel good, pics good. We wanted to make sure we felt super stylish and schnazzy, so we both went out and got ourselves a new “something” to wear to the shoot. Matthew’s sweater and blue collared shirt was purchased from Macy’s the Wednesday before the shoot and I had treated myself to those darling Aldo boots the prior weekend. Although we didn’t get entire new outfits, the sprucing to our already owned clothing made us feel like rock stars and it shows.
- Relax. If you do have serious anxiety about taking pictures, find a way to make you relax just before the shoot. If yoga brings you to center, go to Yoga the morning of your shoot. Or you can always calm down with an adult beverage. A friend of mine told me she and her hubby took their engagement pictures at a local vineyard and decided to do a wine flight prior to shooting the photo. Just be careful: don’t drink and drive to your shoot. Either designate a DD between the two of you or drink on site.
- Be a kid again. Being playful with one another during the shoot can make for some great moments. Cut jokes, laugh, and being carefree results in some fabulouso images, like the one here where Debbie told us to throw leaves up in the air and overexaggeratingly look at them. Fact of the matter is that it’s brilliant and simple – just the way us business-savvy brides like it!
- Roll with the punches. I climbed a tree at the engagement shoot to get some fantastic pictures. Then a birdie left a smelly, gross present on my brand new boots. Sounds like a perfect opportunity for Bridezilla to strike, but I resisted the inner-demon. I laughed…isn’t getting pooped on good luck? We took the dookey off with a leaf and moved right along. They didn’t make a big deal out of it, so why should I? If something goes awry, just roll with it. Besides, photoshop can fix anything!