How To Make Your Wedding Photos Not Awkward

Updated September 28, 2023

Awkward wedding photos aren’t uncommon, and that’s easily explainable.

Wedding is, perhaps, the most photographed day in your life, which imposes a high degree of stress.

But the pictures will remind you of this day for decades to come, and you likely want them to be perfect.

The only working method to avoid looking awkward on wedding photos is to be confident and natural. However, such simple advice isn’t that easy to follow when you’re under stress and in the center of attention.

To feel comfortable in pictures, you must first determine what causes your anxiety and then eliminate the issue.

For example, if you feel weird posing in front of guests, find a secluded place. If you worry about your belly sticking out, find a dress that covers it.

Some brides go too far, aiming to look their best. But overdone makeup and hairstyle may ruin photos, just like the lack of preparation. Your efforts must be adequate.

Remember that the wedding isn’t about your attire but about beginning a new page in your life.

Lastly, enjoy your time. Don’t think about your look. Natural emotions and poses shade confidence and happiness that can’t be replicated.

Pose Away from People

Many brides feel shy and overly stressed posing in front of an audience. Whether these are your family members or acquaintances you never talk to, an audience doesn’t help to feel relaxed.

Instead of posing in a crowded place, ask your wedding photographer to find a more secluded spot. This will also prevent unwanted people from getting into the camera frame.

For instance, while everyone is in the venue, you may search for a nice place outside. A good idea is to visit the venue together with your photographer beforehand to note the best places for pictures.

However, finding a spot without any people around isn’t always possible. Some brides also feel that leaving guests for themselves during a reception is tacky.

In this case, you may kindly ask the guests to look away while you’re taking pictures.

Pose Naturally

The term “awkward” is broad, but typically, it refers to someone looking uncomfortable. Bride’s nervousness can be easily detected by clumsy, rigid posing.

In other cases, unnatural posing results from the bride’s attempts to control every muscle of her body to create a flawless picture.

Don’t think about how you look in the pictures. You don’t see yourself through the camera lens anyway and can’t predict how your pose will turn out on the final images.

So instead of worrying about your look, relax and take natural poses.

By “relax,” I don’t mean to sit with a hunched back. Your posture is crucial. It not only looks better in pictures but also makes you feel more confident.

Don’t press your arms against your body, and don’t hold your breath while drawing in your stomach. It would be best if you moved gracefully but freely, without stiffening your muscles.

Even if you manage to take a relaxed pose, your hands can give away your nervousness. So find something to hold to mask it, such as a glass or a bouquet. But make sure your grip isn’t too tight.

Communicate with Your Photographer

The result of your wedding photoshoot depends majorly on the photographer and your communication. And the communication effectiveness is based on multiple factors.

The first step to ensuring your wedding pictures don’t turn out awkward is choosing the photographer wisely. You should interview them thoroughly and check the portfolio.

But most importantly, you should create a connection. If the photographer makes you feel shy, the pictures won’t be great, no matter how beautiful their portfolio is.

During the wedding, keep your photographer in the loop. They must know an exact schedule and any amendments to it.

This will ensure they won’t drag you to take pictures in unsuitable time and help to avoid havoc resulting in extra stress.

Finally, you should coordinate with the photographer when taking pictures. Don’t be afraid to ask them for posing tips or which angle is better.

An experienced photographer knows how to avoid awkward wedding pictures and make any bride look astonishing.

Show Real Emotions

I’ve mentioned stiff, awkward posing previously, and the same rule applies to your facial expression.

Some brides are afraid to look awkward when smiling or showing other emotions. But posing with the same bland facial expression at your own wedding is even worse.

Think of the wedding pictures you like. Some of them may be posed and serious, but typically, people prefer wedding pictures that beam real emotions.

Such photos express the bride’s personality and have a unique atmosphere. They seem real, and true happiness can’t be awkward.

It would help if you didn’t overact, too. Exaggerated surprise or happiness are suitable when they’re intended to be the main idea of a picture, for instance, on a group portrait with friends. But false facial expressions shouldn’t be present in every wedding photo.

Consider a Pre-Wedding Photoshoot

Wedding photoshoots can be highly nerve-racking for multiple reasons. For some brides, it’s posing in front of an audience.

For others, it’s the idea of making guests wait. And nearly all brides worry about not having a chance to retake the pictures.

A pre-wedding photoshoot solves all these issues. First, it’s less overwhelming as you’re one-on-one with the photographer. Second, you can spend as much time shooting as you need and schedule a reshoot if you are unsatisfied with the result.

Some couples also opt for a post-wedding photoshoot. However, a pre-wedding session lets you receive pictures earlier and post them on the wedding day rather than wait for weeks after the event.

A pre-wedding photoshoot may replicate the actual wedding. However, you’ll need to hire a makeup artist, hairstylist, and rent the venue twice to make it look natural.

Instead, you can go for a regular romantic photoshoot. Your wedding day will likely be shot on guest phones anyway.

Choose Comfortable Attire

Your wedding attire must be comfortable both physically and emotionally. You can’t relax if you’re constantly worrying about your train or keeping balance on high heels.

Also, make sure you don’t have to adjust your dress or accessories when taking the pictures.

Your attire should showcase your personality, not blindly follow the latest trends. Do not agree with the advice of a sales assistant or friends when choosing your dress if you don’t feel it belongs to you.

The attire must also highlight your best sides and hide problematic spots. For instance, if you’re aware of your belly, don’t choose a tight dress.

Otherwise, you’ll feel awkward during a wedding photoshoot and will try covering it with your bouquet or hide behind objects.

Before wedding dress shopping, learn which silhouettes suit your figure the best. Remember that a silhouette doesn’t determine the dress style.

For example, an A-line dress can be both traditional and feminine or extravagant and punky.

Practice is crucial for feeling assured during the event. Rehearse to walk in your wedding heels and dress. No one walks in such an attire daily, so your walk must usually be different from how you typically move.

When all you think about is positioning your foot not to fall, you can’t take good pictures.

Don’t Overdo Anything

Know limits when it comes to makeup, hairstyle, and attire. Your look should be festive but adequate and appropriate for the event. Leave glitter and fake tan for clubs. A wedding deserves a more elegant look.

Adding a bit of contrast or color during photo editing is more straightforward than masking tons of makeup. Plus, you may feel uncomfortable with drag queen-style makeup when everyone else has a relatively natural look.

The bride already stands out the most at her wedding, and bright makeup draws even more attention which can be overwhelming.

You don’t have to keep everything minimalistic. But your attire should follow the overall wedding dress code not to look awkward.

Remember You Look Your Best

You’ve likely spent weeks choosing every detail of your look and hours getting ready. So how can you look bad? Remember that even if not every aspect is perfect, you still look your best.

If you feel confident on a daily basis, awkward feeling at a wedding is only a result of stress. It doesn’t indicate how you really look.

Remember that no one judges us harsher than we do it ourselves. Others don’t see the pimple on your chin or two hairs that stick out of the styling.

Instead, they see a happy bride in a breathtakingly beautiful dress, with professional makeup, and in a lovely setting.

Enjoy Time with Guests

While a wedding is a stressful day, it isn’t torture. You aren’t getting paid for posing in pictures, so they don’t have to be flawless.

Instead, enjoy your day, talk to guests, laugh, and be yourself. Happiness can’t be faked and is beautiful no matter whether you like your smile in a picture.

The best wedding pictures are ones that radiate the day’s atmosphere and feel natural. Such photos are often taken when you don’t even notice the photographer.

You may be dancing with friends or throwing your wedding bouquet, and these moments captured on camera are far more attractive than posed shots.

Image credit: Pexels

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