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4 photo hacks to help tell a story

Have you ever seen a beautifully displayed photo gallery or slideshow and you think to yourself, "wow, I feel like I was there"?

There is a method to this madness.

Whether you're shooting a wedding, family session or covering an event; if you capture these four types of images, your gallery will have the elemental images for your "wow" factor.


(best shot with 16-35mm, 35 prime or 24-70mm)

One of the main details of a wedding day you'll want to keep in mind when thinking of capturing of story-compelling images, is establishing your "where."

When shooting an environmental portrait, you want your viewers to clearly understand where they are, what they are "attending," and get an overall feel for what the guests experienced.

They don't necessarily have to have a human element, however incorporating you're main subject (sometimes inconspicuously) is a fun and creative way to think outside the box.

Good photo options for these images are wide angle church or venue shots, rooftop images, reception, outdoor environmental...etc.

This type of image can also be incorporated into family sessions by stepping back away from your subject and capturing the entire surrounding to establish their location.


(best shot with macro lenses, 70-200mm or 24-70mm)

For weddings, it may be an obvious given what details you should be photographing, from the invitations and table displays, to the rings and hors d'oeuvres-- but family sessions can pose an interesting dilemma.

Standard family portraits are still important to capture, but photographing the things that make your session memorable are what truly adds the "story-telling" element.

Take your families downtown to the ice cream shoppe, set up a picnic in a field, play Monopoly on the beach -- get creative! The more out-of-the-box your session, the better details you can photograph.


(best shot with 50 prime, 85 prime, 24-70mm, 70-200mm)

The bread and butter of your sessions. These are a given, and you can take as many of them as you want. They usually consist of standard posed portraits, casual encounters during events and receptions, and any other medium-type images throughout your day.


(best shot with 70-200mm)

Tight, expressive facial shots can be the emotional and key images for your gallery. They often help establish the feeling of your session, and set the mood for the entire gallery display.

For weddings, some prime times to capture emotion are the groom as he sees his bride walking down the aisle, the bride reading her vows, the audience reactions, the FOB seeing his daughter...etc. Anticipate the emotion and be ready; try to fill the entire frame with the facial expression, whether happy or sad!

These are also great additions to family and couple's sessions to show excitement and intimacy.

During your next session or wedding, try to keep these four types of images in mind to host a variety of photos for your final gallery!

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Wilmington, NC