The time around your wedding is also some what of a photographic journey with photo ops at your engagement party, hens celebration, rehearsal dinner and then on your honeymoon! We chatted to Makeup Artist, Hair Stylist and Photographer Simona Janek, who regularly runs portrait sessions for gm photographics. Simona was kind enough to let us in on a few of her secrets for ensuring snap-happiness.
Most of us don't have the luxury of a full time makeup artist on call, so chances are you'll be doing your own makeup for most of the instances in which you're likely to be photographed. "It's important to make sure you have enough coverage," says Simona. "Foundation will help your skin to look flawless, but take care to blend your foundation well, especially around the jaw, hairline and down your neck." When choosing a foundation for photography, make sure the colour matches your décolletage.
As a general rule, you can carry a bit more makeup in a photograph than you would day to day, so don't be afraid to apply a little more than usual. "Don't be afraid to play up your eyes and make sure your brows are well groomed," suggests Simona. "Don't forget your lips either. Some women can get away with a bit of gloss, others need a bit more colour to brighten them up. "
Makeup Dos & Don'ts:
- Do keep shimmer soft and only on the cheekbones and eyelids
- Don't use harsh white, instead go for warm gold and peaches, they blend better with your skin tone
- Do keep your foundation matte (with high definition and sophisticated digital cameras it will help your skin look flawless. Foundation that's too dewy will highlight flaws and make you look oily)
- Don't wear an SPF foundation or moisturiser - it will reflect the flash
- Do blend your makeup very well
Posing for your Body
Don't you just love watching celebrities walk the red carpet? They know their angles and how they look best. In fact, you might even notice that some of them utilise the same pose over and over again. There's a reason for that!
"Most celebrities have spent time in front of the mirror, or having many many photographs taken." Simona suggests posing for full-length shots as if you were on the red carpet. "Keep your body on a 45 degree angle from the camera and put your weight on your back foot to help slim the hips," she says. "Make sure there's some space between your arms and your body to avoid looking shapeless, place a hand on your hip to accentuate the line of your body."
If you're sitting, there are techniques for posing too. "Scoot forward to the front of the chair," says Simona, "and lean forward a bit. This will help give your body a better line and slim down your legs."
Posing for your Face
Just like there are tricks to posing your body, there are also tricks to posing your face. "First up, spend a little time taking photographs of yourself, or having a friend do it," suggests Simona. "It will help you get comfortable with your face, and get to know your best angles." Really work hard at it if you want the best results: try every angle you can possibly think of, move your head just a little at a time and also spend some time changing the way you smile, which direction your head is tilted and where your eyes are focused.
A well-known modelling technique is called The Turtle. "Basically, hold your head level, then drop your chin down and push it forward," says Simona. "It might feel really awkward, but it's a great trick for elongating the neck and getting rid of the appearance of a double chin."
Practice Makes Picture Perfect
Just like Cher in Clueless, it's worth taking a photograph of your outfit beforehand. It might seem like overkill, but you'd be surprised how differently things photograph. "Some pieces just look more flattering than others, especially on camera," says Simona. "Spend some time trying on your outfits and finding the right colours and styles to suit you."
And smiling? Forget saying cheese! "Use a technique called Happy Thoughts - which is pretty much what it sounds like - think about something that makes you happy and it will shine from within."
Lastly, try to relax and enjoy yourself. Make sure you're not holding any tension in your hands or mouth. Relax your face by smiling or gently blowing air out through your lips. Remember, right now you're the one in the limelight, so lap it up!
I recently put these tips to the test! (Yes the girl above is me!) Thank you to Simona Janek for her expert transformation #totesamaze
Image credits from top-bottom: 1. Left: Diane Kruger, Photography by Sebastiano Pessina Right: Montana Cox, Photography by Caroline McCredie/Getty Images 2. Left: Jessica Stam, Photography by Michael Buckner/Getty Images Right: Georgia May Jagger, Photography 2012 Rimmel London 3. Left: Kelly Rowland, Photography by Caroline McCredie/Getty Images Right: Megan Gale, Photography by Caroline McCredie/Getty Images Words: Rosemary Slade