When I am hired a professional photographer to make couple portraits (being them wedding, engagement, or honeymoon photo services) I always try my best to catch the couple’s personality in my shots so that their real nature might be well represented in the pictures and the customers will be satisfied with the final results of the photo shooting.
Beside, I try to make the shooting as pleasant and exciting as possible, so that the couple can keep happy memories of the hours spent with me and my camera. Needless to say, couples are very different from one another and I have to adapt to their personalities and special request to have an enjoyable photo service and beautiful portraits after that.
That’s why, beside some romantic shots in the narrow alleys of Rapallo’s town centre or at seaside, we managed to make some funny and dynamic shots with the couple dancing, playing piano together, jumping, and gently mocking at each other, which ensured creative pictures to be taken and much fun for the couple and…the photographer himself!
Yulia’s and Pavel’s photo portrait as fine example for a photo walking session in Venice
Yulia and Pavel, a young Russian couple who hired me for a honeymoon photo shooting in Venice gave me the chance to enjoy a lively photo session which can well explain what I mean by “informal photo shooting”.
In the meanwhile I make the most of my camera, equipment and experience to get some high-quality shots of these moments without asking the couple to pose for most of the time we spend together. I let the couple discover by themselves and admire Venice’s different faces, sometime suggesting to have a look at my favorite secret spots or play with funny poses, like jumping o running towards each other.
Needless to say, we also stop in Venice’s most romantic spots to make some shots with “classical” backgrounds, like Rialto Bridge, San Marco Square or the Academia Bridge.
Yulia and Pavel enjoyed their photo walking tour very much, let themselves be amazed by the city and spontaneously played with me and with each other: the result is a series of funny, informal and original shots, alongside some more “standard” couple portraits in Venice.
What about you? Are you ready for your own informal photo walk in Venice?
I was lately hired as honeymoon photographer by a just-married Russian couple. The couple was spending a few days in Venice before leaving the city for a honeymoon cruise and wanted to have high-quality pictures of their stay.
We started our informal photo walk in the city, stopping in some romantic spots to shoot the couple and, in some cases, letting the bride posing alone.
We arrived at the Chiesa della Salute and had some shots thereas well, with the couple sitting on the stairs or standing with the Canal Grande on the background.
Then, while I was not looking at her, the bride approached the statue of a young boy holding a frog which was standing there and touched the frog. Was she posing as Cinderella and trying to kiss and turn it into Prince Charming?
In any case, she was immediately reproached by the statue’s watchmen.
As we later learnt, the statue is an important piece of art by the American artist Charles Ray sponsored by the tycoon François Pinault. Some critics find it a very creative piece of modern art, other consider it too provocative; some argue that the statue symbolize a look at the future, others argue that the frog hints to water, a key element in Venice … well, in my client’s eyes, it was just something like a toy to play with!
The bride touching the statue before being seen by the watchmen
Lately I had the chance to shoot a young Russian couple that, after getting married in Russia, enjoyed a honeymoon trip to Venice and hired me for aninformal photo walk.
Well, it happened that the city had just been deeply soaked by the previous day’s rain and there were many large paddles in the squares and alleys as we walked by. It suddenly came to my mind that I could make the most of this unique situation, so typical of Venice: I asked the bride if she felt like taking her shoes off and walk barefoot along the road which she did quite gladly…I assume she did not want the water damage her nice shoes!
Later, when we reached Piazza San Marco I suggested the couple to dance in the paddles that covered large sections of the square so that I could portray them with this famous background in a very special condition!
Luckily enough, and as it often happens in Venice, in many other areas of the city there was no sign of high water at all which allowed us to take more “classic” and “dry” shot in the rest of the honeymoon photo shooting.
One of the most common situation during a couple photo service is that the couple do not feel at ease posing in front of the camera. This is mostly due to the fact that they decided to have a photo portrait for their wedding, honeymoon, or holiday in Venice and this is perhaps their first photo shooting (or one of the first) in their life.
Beside, in most cases, they are not familiar with the photographer whom they just met that day and feel a bit uncomfortable about his presence, glances and work.
My own strategy to overcome this problem is to spend as much time as possible with the couple and let them relax and get used to my presence. First of all, I propose to meet well before the photo session for an informal interview: while chatting in a café, we can get a bit more acquainted with each other and I can get important pieces of information about the couple’s wishes and personality.
I used this method with a young couple who lately hired me for a honeymoon photo service: Irina and Simon felt a bit uncomfortable, even nervous, in the beginning, which explains the lightly “stiff”, almost awkward look of the first shots.
However, the photo walk had a very relaxing effect on them: they enjoyed Venice’s markets and small alleys where I even asked them to dance and jump and, eventually, the last shots managed to catch very intense, spontaneous glances and feelings.
They also had a nice idea: why not jumping on a gondola and going on with the shooting session on board? This gave them the opportunity to experience a traditional Venetian transport facility, and provided me with the chance to portray them with the unique background of the ancient Venetian palaces seen from the Canal Grande.
A nice and useful turn of perspective which resulted in some pleasant couple portraits of which you can see on my website.