Big fat Indian weddings are chaotic and unpredictable. And if there is anything short, that is time. Anything can happen on a wedding day. Even the best of your plannings can go hay-way. The hard-earned one hour that your bride had promised for her bridal portraits could get reduced to merely 10 minutes or 5 minutes. Now, there you can’t go about complaining and blaming every single person beside you. Instead, you need to think and plan ahead so that you deliver the pre-decided bridal portraits as promised to your bride. Here are some simple tips to follow for some amazing bridal portraits even in 5 minutes.
1. Stay prepared
Indian weddings have ample moving parts. So while you are waiting for the bride to finish her bridal makeup and thinking that you have a lot of time in hand- take a walk around the location and look for good spots. The location that you finalize should not be too far from where the bride is getting ready, because you actually have 5 minutes in hand.
The next thing that you need to keep in mind is the lightmap depending on your location. Is it the bride’s room, or in the dark, or in early harsh light? Whatever be the situation, be prepared with your light setup. Use one of your team members as the subject to test the shot and have it ready before the bride arrives. Keep in mind, you just have 5-10 minutes for capturing bridal portraits without wasting time in setting up the light.
2. Keep a few go-to poses
When you know there is not much time in hand, it is not wise to experiment with poses. Don’t waste time in setting your bride into some complicated pose. As it is your bride will be stressed and nervous, your job is to keep things simple and worry-free for your bride. Also, there is no point in keep directing your bride for bridal portraits. Being a photographer if you do not know what to do, you probably will not induce confidence. Keep a list of 4-5 basic, easy-to-do-poses ready in your mind. After that, if you still have time left, you can proceed with the experiment. But, it is very important to complete the basics first.
3. Be clear with your directions
If you have less time, that indicates, your bride has less time too and she will be in a hurry. Too many instructions or directions will puzzle her and that would reflect on her face and expressions. Give her direct instructions in a relaxed and friendly tone.
4. Be ready with your bag of tricks
Even after thorough research of the wedding venue, if you find that the location is not quite gorgeous, as you expected it to be, it is time for you to bring out some of your ‘go-to’ tricks. First, check if there are any usual tricks that you can apply to get some amazing bridal portrait. Are there any tall trees or plants or flowers for a shoot-through image? If you are lucky enough you might also get to click some amazing sunset silhouette shots. Is there any water fountain or reflective body for a reflection shot?
How about a contrasting shot in the middle of the day under harsh light? Or playing with shadows and planning high-key shots with large blank walls? If you have nothing that provokes you, probably it is safe to fall on your bag of tricks. As wedding photographers, you have a few things handy in order to add an element to the photographs. You can confidently fall back on anything from fairy lights to shiny pom-poms, mirrors, lens balls and prisms.
These were some of the tricks and tips that would prove helpful for shooting a bridal portrait when you are facing a time crunch. Remember, your attitude is going to affect the bride so put up a calm exterior even if you are panicking on the inside and things will go smooth and positive.