straight down to business, beans talks photography

I thought I'd start this week off with a look back at our wedding and engagement photos, maybe pick out a couple favourites of mine, explain what the experience was like from a groom's point of view - a groom who wasn't too fond of pictures before he unwittingly married a wedding photographer.  Truth is, I can be sort of awkward, in fact, let me show you the oldest picture of me that my parents have framed and on display at their place:

And just think, that's the photo they kept AND framed... I can't imagine what the rest of the set looked like.  That look of frustrated displeasure was what accompanied probably my first school picture day, and it still reflects how I sometimes feel about being forced to pose for "nice" pictures: why are we doing this and when is it over.  So how did I enjoy having my picture taken by Jamie Delaine and Lauren Wakefield?

I loved it.

Going in I knew I couldn't give Laura any guff, these were two of her photography idols and I wasn't about to ruin either day with looks of malcontent, but I didn't think I'd actually enjoy myself.  Let me show my personal favourite from the engagement session with Jamie:

Am I staring awkwardly at the camera wondering what to do with my face?  Nope, I'm just kissing my wife. In fact, if you've seen the rest of the shoot, you know I pretty much just got to grope Laura on camera while she got the photos she wanted... in my books that's a win-win.  Wives/brides/brides-to-be call your men over and have them take a read if they're ever anything but excited for getting photos done, it really is a great excuse to get handsy.

As for the wedding session, I feel like this photo really portrays how much fun we had taking pictures with Lauren:

I was blown away by how easy the whole thing was.  Instead of me being awkward in front of the camera, Lauren was giving us great direction, telling us how amazing we looked, and really bringing out not only our best looks for the serious photos, but also giving us the confidence to have a little fun.

To me, a great photo evokes the kind of emotion that was present when the photo was taken, as soon as it becomes a chore to pose for the photos, its time to call it quits.

Now I understand not every photo can be as amazing as the ones above, and there is still a place for obligatory family photos (birthdays, Christmases, you know the drill) but there are little things that Laura will do for me to make all photos more enjoyable.  So, if you know anyone who is as childish as I am when it comes to taking photos for any occasion, these might be a couple useful strategies:

1. Occasional practice smiles - some days I feel like I have a weird smile, and then I get worried about what the picture is going to look like, so something as simple as Laura looking at my smile and telling me it's going to look good on camera is enough to get me in good spirits to take some posed pictures.

2. Setting expectations - if we're headed to a family event and Laura knows we're going to have to be in a few photos, warning me ahead of time goes a LONG way towards letting me get comfortable with the idea, then, when it comes up, it isn't a chore it's just an accepted part of the evening.

Aaaaaand that's it, if I'm feeling confident and prepared (and well-fed!) then I'm ready to stow the grumpy face and show those pearly whites (beans-face excluded).

Phew... I think that's about all I have to say about photography.  Next week on the blog, I'll convince Laura to crank out a few pages about her favourite aspects of financial statements and give her opinion on whether stock options or bonuses are the more tax-efficient strategy for aligning employee and shareholder goals!

- Beans


  1. hah i love this! especially love the part about your men getting to be "handsy", totally passing that on ;)

  2. Beans! This was great! I'll definitely pass this message along. My husb-to-be, much like you, doesn't really like taking photos (he seems to have his eyes closed in all of them). However, when we did our engagement photos with Laura back in August he told her that he learned how to smile because of her and he actually enjoyed the engagement session... which is great cause now he'll enjoy the wedding photos too. I think he noticed that he could be handsy too. I have a hard time with PDA, so he loved this.
    I'm looking forward to the financial aspect - I have a small business too, and I'm always curious of what other's are doing (especially a successful one like Laura - How lucky it is that she has you for that!).

    1. Thank you!! Being married to a photographer I sometimes feel like I'm the only one who struggles with pictures, its comforting to know there are others out there. And I'm glad Laura can help them too :)

      I hadn't planned on talking too much about the back-end, I wasn't sure how many other small business owners were reading. I'll make sure to include something before the week is over though - anything specific you'd like to hear about?


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