12 Tips on What to Wear for Your Portrait or Engagement Session
‘What to wear for a photo shoot’ is an important question when it comes to getting ready for your portrait or engagement photo session. Although it can be a tricky subject, it’s important to discuss outfit choices with your photographer before the day of the shoot. After all, the photographer’s job is to help you look your best!
The choice of clothing is one of the key elements to a photo. It can complement your unique style and personality, but it can also ruin an otherwise perfectly lit and composed image, if chosen poorly. It can be really disappointing when photos are unusable solely due to subjects wearing unflattering clothing, e.g. creased, ill-fitting, or overly-revealing.
Below is a short list of clothing suggestions that I’ve put together to ensure you get the best results out of your shoot.
1. Comfort is key: Wear clothes that feel comfortable, fit well and that you feel good in. This will ensure you feel relaxed and ‘yourself’ during the shoot and will help get the best images.
2. Solid Colours: Solid colours work best. Avoid distractions, such as stripes, bold prints, flowers, logos, etc. as these will draw attention away from the main subject, i.e. you.
3. Not Too Much Black or White: This is my personal opinion, but all-black outfits tend to look overly solemn and formal, while all-white clothing can make a pale skin look paler. Also, these two colours are difficult to photograph without losing detail.
4. Colour Pop: Incorporate a pop of colour into your outfit. It can be in the form of a bright scarf, hat or colourful heels.
5. Accessories and Props: Consider adding accessories/interesting details to your overall look. An interesting hat, glasses, belt, necklace, or earrings can often compliment an outfit. Couples, for instance, could bring along items or tokens that hold significant meaning to them. Such props can enhance the intimacy of the portrait and evoke wonderful memories when viewed in the future.
6. Classic over Trendy: Opt for a classic look, as opposed to recent trends in fashion. This will give your images a timeless feel.
7. Footwear: For ladies, if you’re wearing heels, also bring a pair of flat shoes with you for walking. And guys, dark coloured casual shoes will look better than white sneakers.
8. Keep Location in Mind: Consider your location and style of session when putting an outfit together.
9. Make-Up: Ladies, have your make-up done professionally, if possible. It makes a big difference. Please note that I can organise a professional make-up artist for you.
10. Variety: Bring an outfit change to get a wider variety of images. There’s always time for a wardrobe change.
11. Coordinate Colours: For couples’ sessions, try to coordinate colours, but don’t match. Pick a couple of colours and choose clothes that will fit in this colour palette. You can visit Pinterest for inspiration for colour combination ideas.
12. Coordinate Styles: For couples: Coordinate your styles, i.e. do not mix casual and formal clothing. If you’re wearing a ball gown, your partner should not be wearing shorts! Unless that’s the look you’re going for, of course!
To conclude, please bear in mind that the above points are mere suggestions. There’re no rules. The important thing is that you are comfortable and happy with your look. And as mentioned earlier, you can always consult with your photographer if in doubt.
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