Viewing entries in
Client Education

3 Ways To Feel Comfortable on Camera with Your Partner

Comment

3 Ways To Feel Comfortable on Camera with Your Partner

A successful photo shoot with your partner includes a few things:

  1. You both become relaxed around me and with each other
  2. The two of you share a laugh.
  3. You find a moment of connection in which you completely forget I’m even there.

All of my client’s favorite photos are those that are less posed and more moments. If you haven’t worked with me before you may wonder how in the world can I get this comfortable with my significant other AND have a stranger capture it.

Well, first of all...I’m no stranger. Or at least, I won’t be by the time our session is over. I take building realationships (yes,I meant to spell it like that) with my clients very seriously. I respect the fact during a couples session you are making an investment to celebrate your relationship with photos, and in return, I invest time to get to know the two of you better. I believe that this is the first step in creating your most treasured images together.

I also know that feeling comfortable on camera takes time as well and I will be sharing 3 ways you can feel comfortable on camera with your partner.

Get Awkward

I want us to reframe how we think about awkwardness. When we experience it, it is a level of unfamiliarity. Take away the initial nerves, stress, and discomfort from a situation and you no longer experience awkwardness. In order to get the photos you really desire, overcome the feeling of awkwardness by getting awkward. You are free to just be, no matter how many unfl attering faces you make or however many times you mistakenly blink mid-shot.

Fun Fact: I’ve never received feedback from a client that said “hey, I look really silly in this photo” It’s not about how you look; it’s about how you feel during the session and the memories that come to mind when you look back at your albums.

engagement photographer greenville sc wedding photography latoya dixon photography

Talk About Each Other

Nothing brings a couple together quite like affirming one another does. Another way to get more comfortable with your partner on camera is by talking about one another. What do you love? What do they do to make you laugh? What’s a story about them that you’ll never forget? This is truly when I take a step back and let the moment unfold. Although you’re talking about your partner, you’re entering into a moment of genuine connection by acknowledging the things that make being with your significant other worth it. Talking about one another generally leads to a moment like this:

greenville sc engagement photographers latoya dixon photography

 

Come Prepared To Love on Your Partner

Preparedness is key no matter what kind of photo session you invest in. You can find many resources on what to wear for your engagement shoot, places to take your engagement photos, etc. But there is a a level of mental preparedness you must also be mindful of.

Come prepared to love on your partner. Write down a few things you love most of about them.

If you’re not comfortable with getting physically close on your own, I can’t promise to magically make your photos appear as if you do. Spend some time the day before your session, or even hours before, sitting next to one another, holding hands, making some time for genuine conversation. It’s a much needed ice breaker for going into a session where you plan to celebrate your connection.

best engagement photographer greenville sc latoya dixon photography

 

The prerequisite for a couples session that feels free, organic, and fun is to have a solid foundation, a little prep work done, and embracing each other for who you truly are. If you’re interested in booking a session with your significant other for an engagement, anniversary, or just because, contact me here so we can begin discussing how to create a session for you and your lover that leaves you with reminders of why loving them is worth it.

 

 Hey there! I'm Latoya & I'm a wedding and couples connection photographer. I understand that that being behind the camera can feel a bit uncomfortable if you only do it once or twice a year (if that many times), but I'm here to help allay those fears and provide you with photos that make you remember why being with your partner is absolutely worth it!

Hey there! I'm Latoya & I'm a wedding and couples connection photographer. I understand that that being behind the camera can feel a bit uncomfortable if you only do it once or twice a year (if that many times), but I'm here to help allay those fears and provide you with photos that make you remember why being with your partner is absolutely worth it!

Comment

How to Find the Right Wedding Vendor For You

Comment

How to Find the Right Wedding Vendor For You

Whether you have a full wedding experience or opt for choose to celebrate less traditional and more intimate there will always be a few decisions made for wedding-day coordination.  Wedding planners and coordinators make this feat so much easier, but how do you get to the point where you're selecting wedding vendors that are right for you? 

It is my strong belief that wedding vendors should be chosen thoughtfully and carefully, whether its your wedding photographer or your florist. In this post I'll share how you can find the right wedding vendor for YOU.

1. Online research is a start.

Thank goodness for the internet, amirite? At the click of a button and a few targeted keywords, like "Greenville LGBTQ-friendly wedding photographer", for example, and you'll return hundreds and thousands of results. Or maybe you heard about a vendor through a friend and took to the internet to find out more information. Online research can help you answer a multitude of questions before you even fill out a contact form or pick up the phone. You can find examples of vendors' work, read testimonials, and reviews, and learn more about them as individuals or the company in general. Leverage online research, but don't let it be the end of your search for the best wedding vendor for you.

2. What do you care most about?

 Have you ever been asked or asked someone what they wanted to eat and their initial response was, "I don't care?" Then after you rattle off a few places to eat, they decline each one? I've done this (and no, I'm not proud of it).

But the truth is that when looking for vendors for your wedding, you may not think you know what you want at first until you hear what's offered. However, to make your search more efficient, go forth by asking questions you really care about.

Do you prefer someone local? Do you have a particular style in mind? Are you on a specific budget? The important thing here is to really focus on what matters to you. There are several wedding blogs that have published questions to ask your vendors, but be sure the questions you ask really resonate with you. A professional vendor will be able to assure your needs are met with them or refer you to someone else who can deliver based on your needs.

3. Meet with vendors in person.

You may often hear me talk about effective communication. While I've failed at it more often than I've succeeded, it's an ongoing topic I'm always willing to be a student of. 

I recently took a class on leadership where we discussed just want effective communication is. The instructor challenged us to guess what the greatest indicators of how well a message is communicated. The results may surprise you:

Content  is only 7% of effective communication.

Tone comes next at 38%

But, Body Language accounts for a whopping 55% of clearly conveying a message.

What does this mean? If you have the opportunity to do so, ask to meet your potential wedding vendor in person. If you can't physically meet due to location, then opt for a video interview. 

But what if I don't have time to do this? I'm an introvert; this is so not my style.

I don't recommend meeting with everyone you find to be a prospective match, but if you've wittled down your list and found that this vendor meets all your criteria on paper it's a great next step. Not only will you get a better understanding of how well this vendor communicates with you, but you can address all of your questions and concerns with all of the cues of communication present.

4. What are your values?

Did you hear about the 2015 wedding cake court case in which a Colorado baker refused to bake a wedding cake for a same sex couple? Without getting into the nitty gritty details, I would say that values should be at the forefront of a decision of hiring a wedding vendor.  Particularly if you are a member of a marginalized or underrepresented group, I encourage to you look where you are celebrated, not tolerated. I've had a range of LDP clients who have made their values clear-- whether they are same sex, religious, non-religious, non-traditional, etc. Voice your values and what you care about to your vendors and be sure that they can not only provide a service for you, but support you as well.

5. Ask a friend.

Word of mouth referrals are the bread and butter of small business. When a friend or family member shares a positive experience with a vendor, you are more likely to trust his/her advice as opposed to a stranger's review.

I am happy to announce a new wedding referral program for LDP Friends and Clients. Learn about our referral program here.

greenville asheville atlanta same sex wedding photographer latoya dixon photography

Have you successfully found your wedding vendors? What are some tips you'd like to give someone who is in this process now? Share in the comments.

Comment

5 Questions Your Wedding Photographer Should Ask You

Comment

5 Questions Your Wedding Photographer Should Ask You

A consultation with your photographer usually focuses on what the photographer can provide you as a couple, but you should always be prepared to answer a few questions yourselves.

Why a Consultation?

If at all possible, I aim to schedule in-person consultations with any couple interested in hiring me to shoot their wedding.  I am very much an introvert, but your wedding day is too much of a liability to be stuck with a photographer you who don't communicate well with or have any doubts about whatsoever. Consultations are a time for us to get to know each other-- for you to see how much I'd much rather hear the two of you talk about how the you met and for me to gage the best way to engage the two of you. Come wedding day the ice will be broken and we can focus on creating a day to remember.

It's About You, Not Me

Many of the articles you'll find online about consultations focus on what you should ask your photographer. There's a lot of good info out there in addition to not so good info.  Be sure that the questions you ask are those you truly need clarity on and not just because you saw it on The Knot (yes, we know about that incredibly long list of questions they recommend you ask us).  During your first consultation with me, it truly is about you, not me. I ask the following questions to show you why:

Alix+Ryan-10.jpg

5 Questions Your Wedding Photographer Should Ask You During The Consultation

  • How did you meet?

    • As someone who is genuinely interested in getting to know two individuals, I like to know the point at which you two first met and where you were as individuals.  Not only does this give me a frame of reference for your interests, hobbies, and sometimes occupations, but there are times when we can schedule the engagement shoot at the same location--just like Alix and Ryan did here.
  • What made you say yes?

    • I ask this question to the partner who was proposed to. Alternately, I also seek to find out at what point the proposer found themselves ready to pop the question.  And as soon as I do, the smiles begin to form. Who doesn't like to hear their partner praising them for being a kind, genuine, and supportive individual (at least that's usually what my couples have to say about each other)?
  • What is your budget?

    • Yes, your photographer should ask you about your budget. Talking about money usually puts people on edge, but at the end of the day your photographer needs to know whether or not they can offer you what you're looking for within a budget that suits you. If their pricing is outside of your budget, let them know. They shouldn't take it personally; it's part of doing business. And if they are within budget, be sure to let them know that too! Remember, this is a conversation.
  • What is the most anticipated part of your wedding day?

    • You never want to wait for your photos to be delivered from your wedding day and find that that one moment you wanted to hold onto is not in your album.  Your photographer should be mindful of your most anticipated moment of the day so that all eyes (and lenses) are pointed in the right place at the right time.  
  • What type of photos in my portfolio do you like best?

    • Okay, I lied. It's a little about me. But it's for your benefit. Asking which photos in your photographer's portfolio you like best is to ensure that you're hiring me for the unique style that I offer.  There are times when clients book a photographer only to ask them to duplicate the style of another photographer. Make sure that what you see on my website and social media is what you expect to receive.

When you're ready to schedule your consultation with me, be prepared for these questions. You'll find that meeting with me is not a sales pitch or an interrogation (by you or me), but a friendly conversation to determine how compatible we are. That's right, it's not just about your compatibility with your partner! I want to ensure that once you leave our consultation, you feel comfortable sharing your momentous wedding day with me.

If you're engaged and ready to book with me for your wedding, reach out to me here to schedule your consultation! I look forward to meeting you (preferably over tacos or donuts)!

Comment