When you think of all the photos you want to take on your wedding day, bridal portraits tend to be at the top of the list. When you imagine these photos, however, what comes to mind? More than likely it’s your stereotypical portrait shots. I’m talking about the bride with her bouquet held down in front of her dress, smiling beautifully at the camera. Or a close up of her flawless makeup, intentionally put together jewelry, and stunning hairstyle. Don’t get me wrong, I absolutely love these photos. Every bride deserves to have those photos that make them feel like they’re on top of the world. But did you know you can have those types of photos and give them an entirely unique, funky flair to them?
More often than not, with bridal portraits, there’s not much of a “think outside the box” approach. Many photographers focus on the bride herself, the makeup, the hair, the dress, the florals, and the jewelry. But some of my absolute favorite photos of my brides are nowhere close to what you’d tend to find on Pinterest. Funky bridal portraits will forever be my absolute favorite way to photograph a bride. And if you’re someone whose personality just doesn’t fit with the typical bridal portraits, then you’re going to like what I have to say next.
If you want to have unique, funky bridal portraits that feel more like you, here are some of my favorite tips and tricks to make your photos stand out.
The first thing I suggest is using props. I know a lot of photographers shy away from props (aside from anything wedding related), but definitely not me. Props can be the perfect way to get that unique, super creative style of bridal portraits. I mean, of course, your bouquet can be a beautiful prop to use, but let’s think outside the box here.
Here are some ideas for props you could add to your bridal portraits:
Honestly, the list could go on. But picking the props you might want to use for your bridal portraits is personal. I recommend making a list of what makes you unique, your favorite things, or how you would describe your personality. From there, identify props that fit with your list and you’ve got yourself some funky, personalized props to make your portraits stand out.
Location is honestly everything. Not only for your wedding or elopement but for your bridal portraits, too. And to be more specific, finding the perfect spot within your location for your bridal portraits is essential. I mean, if you’re getting married at a super cute Airbnb and there’s a beautiful room with the perfect lighting at exactly the right time of day, this is where you should have your bridal portraits done. Of course, if you’re not sure, your photographer will help you pick out the exact best spot.
Some of my favorite unique spots for bridal portraits include:
Lighting has the power to completely transform your portraits. From shadows that add contrast and dimension to your photos to beautiful, soft early morning light from a sunrise, it’s one of the best ways to truly create unique and personal bridal portraits. Many wedding photos and bridal portraits are often done with natural light or during golden hour for that “perfect” glow. But if you’re looking for something other than your average bridal pics, try something different. There are plenty of ways to add character to your photos just by using light.
For example, your portraits could be set in front of big, bright window, where half of the photo is in the shadows and the other half is lit up. Another way is by using props, such as string lights or lamps to create unique lighting situations. Utilizing flash in a darker room can add a little retro feel to your photos. And let’s not forget one of my absolute favorite time to use light: at night, under the stars.
I can’t let you leave this blog without listing some of my favorite ideas for bridal portraits. Of course, everyone has their own personality quirks, likes, and dislikes, which can absolutely determine the style of your bridal portraits. I recommend referencing the list I mentioned above to get an idea of what creative direction you might want your photos to go in.
But if you’re not exactly sure what you want, here are a few ideas to get you started:
There are so many more ideas you could come up with, but these are just a few to get the creative juices flowing. I absolutely love getting those shots that perfectly encapsulate a bride’s personality. If you want unique, funky bridal portraits during your wedding or elopement, contact me today and let’s see how we can work together!