EXPERT ADVICE

FAQs and expert advice about photography

Here is a selection of Q&As from Your East Anglian Wedding magazine whether it be about flowers, hair and makeup, fashion, wedding themes, health & beauty, cakes, stationery, legal advice. If you would like your question answered by our experts, please email it to editor@youreastanglian.wedding

Life Of The Party

Life Of The Party

Q We'd like our photos to be timeless with a few fun extras. What's set to be the next big trend in the world of wedding photography?
A Liz Bishop says: Weddings are becoming more relaxed and informal, with a focus on celebrating your day your way. Most weddings are photographed in a documentary style, capturing key and natural moments discretely while also getting involved in all the fun. I love to capture movement, laughter and fun moments. This is where you really shine.

New trends such as proposal photos, unplugged weddings, first-look photos and even day-after photos are seeing a rise in popularity. While influences such as TikTok and social media hashtags are creating a new creative platform for couples.

At the end of the day, it's all about what you love. Have the confidence to find your style and make it work. You'll always be able to find a photographer who will love to celebrate your style with you.

Liz Bishop, Liz Bishop Photography

Picture Perfect

Picture Perfect

Q I'm worried about having our pictures taken on our wedding day, as we're not the best posers. What would you suggest we do?
A Samantha Clarke says: Congratulations on your upcoming big day! It's completely normal to feel a bit anxious about having your photograph taken, especially if you're not comfortable in front of a camera. Here are some tips to help you feel more at ease and get beautiful photos:

Choose a photographer you connect with: Look for someone whose style aligns with your preferences and discuss your concerns with them beforehand. A skilled photographer will know how to capture authentic and natural moments.

Pre-wedding photo shoot: Consider having a pre-wedding photo shoot at your venue or a location of your choice. This will give you a chance to get comfortable with your photographer and practice some poses and prompts. It also allows the photographer to understand your personalities and preferences better.

Share your concerns: Communicate openly with your photographer about your worries. Let them know if you have specific angles or poses you're uncomfortable with and discuss any insecurities you may have. A good photographer will appreciate your honesty and work with you to ensure you feel relaxed.

Natural interaction: If you choose the right photographer, they will understand your concerns and focus on natural interactions. Walk hand in hand, share a laugh, or have a quiet moment together. As a photographer, we have plenty of prompts that will enable us to capture these genuine moments without making you feel overly posed.

Remember, the most important thing is to enjoy your wedding day. Trust your photographer, be yourselves and focus on the love and joy of the moment. The right photographer will be able to capture the essence of your special day without making you feel uncomfortable.

Samantha Clarke, Samantha Jayne Photography

Love Is In The Air

Love Is In The Air

Q We're clueless when it comes to photography. Is there a list of shots we should ask our photographer to capture?
A Zoë Gibbs says: The best thing you could do is ask your photographer for help. Personally, I know that I prefer to work without a list (except for the family group shots), as I find that having a long list of requests throughout the day makes it very hard to be creative. I have a routine I like to follow and a list somewhat disrupts that, but that's not to say that every photographer prefers working without a list! Your photographer is there to help you and will be happy to answer any questions that you might have.

Zoë Gibbs, Zoë Gibbs Photography

Behind The Lens

Behind The Lens

Q Lots of photographers offer an engagement shoot, but we're camera shy and don't know if it's really for us. What are the benefits?
A Samantha Clarke says: You should consider having an engagement shoot with your photographer for several reasons. An engagement shoot is an investment that not only enhances the quality of your wedding photos, but it is also a fun and meaningful experience.

The shoot will allow you to establish a good rapport with your photographer. This familiarity will really help you feel more at ease in front of the camera on your wedding day, leading to more natural and authentic photos.

One thing you must do is trust your photographer. I may ask my couples to do some strange things, but go with it! An engagement shoot provides an opportunity to practice posing and expressions. As a couple, you can experiment with different prompts, ensuring you appear your best in your wedding photos and know exactly what to expect.

Engagement shoots capture a specific moment in your wedding planning journey. These images often reflect your personalities and interests, making them more personal and meaningful.

The photos from your engagement shoot can also be used for wedding invitations, save-the-dates and wedding décor, adding a personalised touch to these important elements of your wedding.

Samantha Clarke, Samantha Jayne Photography

A moment in time

A moment in time

Q What questions should we ask a photographer before booking them for our wedding?
A Neil Baxter says: Firstly, I would advise checking that they are insured with public liability insurance. This is a legal requirement and helps protect all parties involved. No photographer should be photographing a wedding without insurance. Many venues will ask for a photographer's documents a month or so before your wedding, and if your supplier does not have the correct legal requirements, they will not be allowed on-site to photograph your wedding, leaving you with the headache of finding a new photographer with only weeks to go!

Secondly, do they own all of their equipment, including at least two cameras? Why two cameras? We need a backup camera in case something goes wrong. I actually take three cameras to every wedding. I work with two all day, and the third is my backup. In addition to the cameras, your photographer should have a selection of backup lenses, flash guns, battery packs, and memory cards ready just in case they're needed.

Neil Baxter, Neil Baxter Photography

Festive Cheer

Festive Cheer

Q We're having a Christmas-themed wedding and want to incorporate the season into our photographs. Do you have any ideas of how we can create wintry images?
A Liz Bishop says: The daylight can be really special in the winter. Take advantage of the beautiful low sunshine at this time of year and incorporate sculptural foliage and warm hues. Even without the sunshine, you can get some great moody, atmospheric shots, so make use of the daylight hours.

I love twinkly lights; the more, the better! The ambient light from candles, lamps, and fires makes for the most beautiful backdrops and really brings your photos to life. With a little creative lighting from your photographer, you can create some truly magical images.

One of my favourite winter weddings had it all: sparklers, ice sculptures, a fire breather, and beautiful chandeliers. But when it comes down to it, nothing says Christmas more than twinkly lights, garlands, and, of course, a crackling open fire

Liz Bishop, Liz Bishop Photography

Whatever the weather

Whatever the weather

Q How can we capture amazing outdoor pictures at our December wedding if the weather turns bad?
A Allen Blasdell says: There's no such thing as bad weather when it comes to wedding photos. It's just a matter of turning the bad into good. For example, on a windy day, make use of the wind; it's a great chance to get lovely shots of the bride's veil floating instead of getting someone to throw it up in the air.

Rain can be a couple's worst nightmare, but rain also means puddles that can be used to create reflection photos. The use of umbrellas with a flash behind the couple also looks great in photos.

I've yet to do a wedding where it snowed, but that would make for amazing photos, provided the couple is dressed for it with the bride in a lovely fur wrap. If it doesn't snow but is cold enough, then the beautiful, crisp frost will make everything pop and look gorgeous.

Don't worry too much about the weather; it's simply a chance to get different photos.

Allen Blasdell, Creative Pixel Photography

Picture Perfect

Picture Perfect

Q Can you offer us some advice on how to look natural in front of the camera?
A Allen Blasdell says: There are several ways a couple can ease their camera shyness and anxiety, some are for the couple to do and others for the photographer. Most wedding photographers would call themselves 'documentary', which basically means you shouldn't really notice them – it's their job to fade into the background and capture the events as they unfold but using their experience and skill to get great photos rather than just snapshots. They'll use different lenses and cameras and so on, none of which you need to worry about and probably will never even notice. Just enjoy the day and allow the photographer to do their job.

For myself, I like to intrude on the day slightly and many other photographers will too. We'll simply find a few perfect places for photos of you as a couple, somewhere with a light and colourful background, where the light will make you look a million dollars. We'll just ask you to stand or sit and maybe say: 'have a chat and catch up on the day'. We'll then wait for a moment where you're gazing into each other's eyes and without you realising we'll take a photo. These photos are often used as the centre-fold for the wedding album later.

Do note though that some photographers make a big deal of the couple photos and will want to spend a long time with you both on multiple occasions, for many couples this is perfect, but if you're camera shy or anxious, then it may be best not to select this type of photographer, so choose 'documentary' or 'reportage' instead.

Allen Blasdell , Creative Pixel Photography

Just The Two of Us

Just The Two of Us

Q Lots of photographers offer an engagement shoot, but we're camera shy and don't know if it's for us. What are the benefits?
A Rebecca Woods says: Being camera shy is one of the best reasons for booking an engagement shoot. The last thing you want to happen is to be awkward in front of the camera on your wedding day. Engagement shoots are your opportunity to really get to know your photographer and to get accustomed to how they work.

An engagement shoot can take you through poses that may be used for your wedding photography, and just as importantly identify things that you wouldn't want. For example, your version of 'sweet and romantic', may be another couples 'yuk and cheesy'. Some people may prefer a completely candid approach to their wedding photography, so an engagement shoot is a chance to have a relaxed time with your photographer, capturing the love and fun between you while taking part in an activity that you love. Creating candid moments during your engagement shoot makes it 100 per cent easier to do on your wedding day.

Choose a location for your engagement shoot that has meaning to you such as a favourite walk or where you first met, that way you'll be more relaxed and get the best out of your time with your photographer. You can't get things wrong on an engagement shoot, it's a time to get rid of your camera shyness and get that all important confidence in your wedding photographer. Let them know what you want from your wedding images and listen to their suggestions. Together you'll come up with the best way to create your perfect wedding photographs.

Rebecca Woods, Newsight Photography

Change of times

Change of times

Q How has photography changed over the years, what are 2023 couples looking for from their big-day photographer?
A Paul and Fiona Davies says: Up until around 15 years ago, wedding photography was mostly about recording the day and the traditional shots. The introduction of smartphones in to everyday life has seen a resurgence in everyone's interest in photography and, more than that, creativity. From a photographer's point of view, it's fantastic that couples are so much more invested in their wedding photography and are excited about working with their photographer to create the most stunning images of their perfect day, rather than just record it. Our couples book us because, as full time, qualified Master Photographers, they know they can trust us to realise their dream photographs of their big day.

Paul and Fiona Davies, Eternity Hall Photography

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