You’re looking good. You’re in a picturesque location. You can visualize the end result (and the Instagram post) in your head. All you want to do is take a picture with your man. But he isn’t having any of it! You’ve probably been there at some point.
Let’s just start by acknowledging that it is normal and okay! Most guys don’t love getting their picture taken, and there is nothing wrong with that. You don’t like everything that he likes; differences are good and healthy! But sometimes, we endure the things we don’t like for the people we love. Insert most guys during engagement sessions and portrait time at weddings (:
Fortunately, there are some things that you can do to help make the experience better for your guy if he isn’t a picture-lover! It’s all about good communication and expectations. (like everything else, amiright!?) Below you will find some of my best tips and tricks for how to best prep your man for photos! Whether it’s a just for fun couple session, your engagement session or your wedding day, these tips should help keep everyone happy and maybe even help your guy actually enjoy photos for the first time!
Side note: Finding a photographer who isn’t going to be super awkward helps a TON. I can’t tell you how many times I have had guys say at the end of the shoot that it wasn’t as bad as they imagined or that they actually had fun! A lot of times your guys thought of what your session will be like is based on how much they hated family or school pictures as a little kid since those are the only experiences they have ever had with professional photography. I encourage you to find a photographer that won’t create those forced, awkward moments (and pinky promise that if we work together I won’t!)
1. Tell him why this actually matters to you. It’s about more than having a new profile picture and getting a ton of likes on Instagram. You are documenting your story, capturing an exciting season or your best day. Someday, you’ll be able to look back on these pictures and remember the real emotions that you felt. The anticipation of engagement season, the utter joy of being Mr. & Mrs. for the very first time. These are the photos you will look at to find joy in your hardest moments, the photos you will use to tell your grandkids about your love story, the photos that will be passed down to generations to come. Make sure he knows why this matters to you – because he cares about your heart way more than an Instagram like or a cute photo to hang in the house.
2. Show him what he can expect as a final product! Grab a blog post from your photographer, or make a Pinterest board full of photos that you love. Show him that the end product will be fun, emotive, and joyful – not stiff and uncomfortable like he may be expecting.
3. Include him in the planning process. Or at least give him the option. Some guys want nothing more than to show up and be told what to wear, but others may want a say in their outfit, the location, etc. Check with your guy and get his input where he wants to give it! If he wants you to make all the choices – do it! But if he has thoughts on what shirt he wants to wear, actually listen to him (:
4. Give yourself time on the day of! Plan to leave for your session early and don’t plan anything else right beforehand. There is nothing worse than that moment when you are rushing out the door, arguing about being late and then you show up at the place you are supposed to be grumpy with each other and pretending not to be because you don’t want other people to know. We all know the feeling, it happens to everyone from time to time! But plan lots of margin so that it doesn’t happen on the day of your shoot. (Same goes for weddings – the more margin in your timeline, the less stress!) You want to look back on your photos and remember an amazing time together, not one of “those” arguments.
5. Give him something to look forward to. Turn your session into the beginning of a date night where the rest of the night is full of things he loves to do! Maybe it’s trying out the new craft brewery in town, going out to his absolute favorite restaurant, or just ordering a pizza and playing video games together at home. Pick something that he loves to do but doesn’t get to do often, and treat him with it as a big “thank you!” for doing pictures with you.
Photos can be fun for EVERYONE involved, I promise!
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… for how you felt and not for how you were posed
…for the joy of saying I do, and not for the stress of wedding planning
…for the romantic moments and heartfelt good wishes
Your wedding will bring some of the most transformational moments of your life, moments so important that they can never be recreated…
But they can be relived in exquisite detail.