Photography Tips and Advice featuring Danielle Nicole Photography
To me, photography is something so magical. How cool is it that we can capture a moment in time and keep it forever? We can look back on a series of photos years later and relive a moment in time, and feel every emotion again. If there’s one moment in time that you wish you could relive over and over again, I’m certain your wedding day will rank somewhere very high on that list. Before Nick & I had our wedding celebration I had never been professionally photographed, especially not for an entire day. I didn’t even realize HOW MUCH time you spend with your photographer until the day actually happened. But that’s the best part, they are there every second capturing every beautiful moment. It’s hard not to think about the awkwardness that may come along with that. Does the question “what should I do with my hands?” ring a bell? Or the concern that because you know someone is photographing you the pressure or urge to look “perfect” could be overwhelming. This is exactly why it’s so important to do your research and meet with your photographers in person to see if you guys are a good fit—it’s one thing to LOVE someone’s portfolio, but it’s almost essential to ensure you’ll be getting along, comfortable and feeling yourself with your photographer and most importantly KNOW that your photos will turn out to be authentic and true to you. Leaving it in the hands of your photographer to capture your love story in a beautiful way takes trust. Candid photos are amazing! However, sometimes you just need a little guidance… That’s why I started my bride guide in the first place!! I’m so excited to have the talented and wonderful Danielle Nicole on The Guide sharing her photography wisdom for both fellow photographers and clients to make your experience on your wedding day or engagement shoot the most enjoyable, while leaving you with stunning photos to last a life time!
Words of Wisdom by Danielle Nicole
Words of Wisdom:
I’ve always stuck by the saying, “You’ll get out of this world, what it is that you put into it.” Nothing in life could be truer. Above everything else; good grades in school, never being late to work, meeting deadlines, getting your oil changed before the light starts screaming at you. Just being a good person and doing your absolute best is literally all the world can ask of you. If you go through your day to day not trying to compete with the person next to you but just always competing against yourself, you will never lose. That has been my photography career thus far. When I first started out all I did was see all these amazing artists work, and I was blown away by everything they captured. I was envious, jealous, and at time negative feeling toward them for it not being me putting out such stunning work. But it wasn’t until I began to come into my own did I really see that I am not simply competing against others. I am always setting the bar for myself and pushing myself further but not by being fueled by other photographers, no. I was being pushed and inspired by my clients. Seeing the impact in which my images had on them. Seeing the joy in their eyes, and the warmth in their hearts hearing the laughter throughout our sessions. When I deliver their galleries and they make comments about how I have no clue what these images mean to them, or how I captured those tiny irreplaceable moments that they will cherish forever. Or how when I walk into a clients’ home and see my pictures all over their walls. It makes every bit of the struggle worth it. If I was going to give my two sense, that would be it. Don’t compete with everyone around you. Set the bar high on your own and inspire yourself to go beyond it.
Five Tips for the Client:
- Do your research. When looking for a photographer, make sure you check out their portfolios I.e. social media websites, reviews, word of mouth. Make sure what you are looking for is what the photographer is promoting if you want the best results. Make sure you and the photographer click well before working together and go off of references if possible to ensure an enjoyable session.
- Be open minded. When working with photographers you’re working with an artist. Each session is like a blank canvas. While it’s great to have an idea and vision in mind, express that to your photographer and put trust in their creative process and work with each other to make sure that you both have a great time and create magic together.
- Try your best to time your sessions around a time when everyone involved is the most relaxed, happy and fed. You may laugh but whether its grumpy kids or a cranky husband. Everything that may be going wrong will be easier to come across in pictures. Bring bribes and come prepared to have a good time during your session as this shouldn’t be a chore rather it should be a fun event with your loved one or family.
- Communicate with your photographer on how long their process is to receive your images and in what format. Make sure you guys are in agreement and understand one another’s terms. But also understand that on top of your session, there is a lot of time and work that goes into making your images what they deserve to be. And in between that your photographer may have a family, a life or another job. Be understanding and excited to receive your images by the agreed upon date and feel appreciative to receive sneak peeks or your images early as extra time and attention went into them.
- Share the news by word of mouth. In my experience a good 60% of new clients come from a previous client who had a good experience. And when sharing your images whether in a post or group of friends. Give your photographer a shout out and help them gain new clients. Small business owners like photographers thrive off of the constant flow of new and returning clients and I’m sure your photographer wouldn’t mind repaying if you bring them a lot of business.
Five Tips For the Photographer
- Be hands on with your clients, show them that you are there for them and helping them every step of the way. Many clients have no clue what they are doing and helping them with, location, wardrobe, themes etc. Not only helps you achieve a look you’re going for but eases the minds of your clients. And get to know them, adhere to their personalities and if that means to bust out a bottle of bubbly, it will not only make for cute photos, but also help your clients loosen up if they are into that sort of thing.
- Do not be a Pinterest photographer. Try your best to not copy exactly what you see on Pinterest or what your client brings to you from Pinterest. Instead, use it as inspiration and play off of what you see, and play off what it brings out of your clients.
- Never stop taking pictures. I made the mistake in the beginning and sometimes now to get so wrapped up in talking or posing that I missed out on a lot of special moments. Keep your finger on the trigger, and in focus and just snap away. In my opinion its worth taking 300 pictures in 1 hour if I captured those special in between shots.
- Stay active on social media, emails, your website, texting etc. But do NOT get so wrapped up in algorhythms, followers, likes, comments, insights etc. While it’s great to understand your demographics, the social media world can be cruel and take a toll on your sanity if you focus too much on the details of every post.
- Lastly, be yourself! Let your clients get to know you. Use you quirks, traits, and personality to help bring out the best in your clients. Tell bad jokes, make baby noises, dance like a monkey. Create a set of prompts in your head that you know will work in helping your clients laugh. Practice new ones and make a rapport on what works for you and what works for your clients. Play off their reactions to gauge what you can and can’t say. But just have fun!
All photos by DANIELLE NICOLE PHOTOGRAPHY
So anyway, that’s all I have to say. My tips and advice are based solely on my experience and every photographer and client differ but I hope that maybe some of my words resonate with you and help you create stunning images that last a lifetime whether you are in front or behind the camera. Thanks for reading!
Cheers! Danielle Nicole, Owner of Danielle Nicole Photography.
Thank you so much to Danielle for sharing your photography tips! Anytime Danielle posts a new picture to instagram I can genuinely feel the passion and emotions of the couple just by looking at the photo. All the couples look so comfortable, natural, effortless but most of all HAPPY. That’s exactly how you want your wedding photos to turn out. Try not to get caught up in this bubble of social media and the portrayal of “perfection” or “couple goals” (I genuinely dislike that saying so much and wish it wasn’t used — it’s not a competition) just stay true to you, and that’s when the magic will happen and the beautiful moments will be captured.