Countdown to Calm

17 Oct 2013

Countdown to Calm

Wedding day nerves are to be expected but your photographer can do a lot to restore calm should the jitters threaten to overwhelm your celebrations.

Image gallery

Image gallery

The planning has been meticulous. The dress is stunning and the venue spectacular. Decisions have been taken to ensure every detail, from the table decorations to the bridesmaid’s shoes are spot on. The couple at the centre of this special occasion wouldn’t be human if they didn’t feel a little bit nervous as the pressure of the big day approaches.

If you don’t enjoy having your photograph taken, getting married presents a curious challenge as the chances are you’ll be having your picture taken all day long. So how do you make the best of the situation and end up with pictures that you love?

Based in Oxfordshire, Alexandra Davies of Alexandra Jane Fine Art Photography, has some tips and advice to banish the nerves and help camera shy couples and members of the family enjoy every moment in the spotlight. Key to this, explains Alexandra, is to choose a photographer with a natural reportage or documentary style.

“This kind of work is made for people who feel awkward when they are required to pose for the camera. Interference on the day is minimal but you will end up with really natural shots. The couple will hardly notice that shots are being taken most of the time. If you don’t enjoy the attention of the camera, the last thing you need is to be constantly still, waiting for the camera to go off. And if you really don’t like posing, forget the formal line up shots altogether and ask the photographer to capture the key people in a more informal way.

“I would also recommend a pre-wedding shoot. Whether it’s included in your package or you have to pay extra, it will be worth it in the long run. Firstly, you get to know your photographer and they get to know you so that on your wedding day it feels like a friend is turning up to capture images, rather than a complete stranger. A good photographer knows how to put people at their ease whether it’s by cracking a few jokes, or giving direction.

“Secondly, it’s a chance to get used to having your picture taken by a professional photographer. When you’ve been in front of the camera once, you know what to expect the next time. A pre-wedding shoot also helps the photographer understand how a couple react to the camera.”

It’s worth remembering that when the wedding day is in progress the excitement and the emotion carry most couples along and the camera tends to assume much less prominence in the context of the whole celebration.

The importance of the occasion will not be lost on the younger members of the wedding party. Children can find a wedding day particularly daunting and will not know how to deal with their anxiety. When they are surrounded by lots of people they don’t know the responsibility of walking down the aisle can be quite scary. Alexandra advises that the adults should not expect too much of them.

“Some children will relish the opportunity to be the centre of attention whilst others may withdraw. This is a particularly hard situation for a photographer as there may not always be lots of time to chat with the children beforehand and put them at ease. It is a good idea to get them involved in the day as early as possible. Let them get excited about having their hair done and being part of the preparations so they they are around the photographer from the outset. If they are having fun, they are much more likely to relax and smile in the photographs. If they pull funny faces, ribbon wands and bubbles are great distraction tools.”

For more information and to see examples of Alexandra’s work and presentation products visit

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