24 April 2014

How I try and capture the two of us

Thank you for your sweet comments on the last post. As promised here are my tips for photographing you and your other half. These work for us. I can't promise full proof results every time! 

Capturing the boy and I is always fun. After six years the boy has become used to the presence of the camera but has not really grown to love it. We actually talked about it today and he said that whilst he is sometimes exasperated by my schemes to get a good shot, he enjoys the fact that I try and record 'us'.


I think that is the bottom line. No matter what the photo looks like, it's a record. It says, "this is us, today and I want to remember it."
So this is how I go about trying to photograph the two of us...

Self timer is your friend
Granted it can feel weird the first time you do it but it is one of the best ways to take photos of the pair of you. I use my inbuilt self timer on my SLR and the timer-cam app on the iPhone.
If you are out and about look for big rocks, a gatepost or even use the floor to prop your phone or camera on.
A simple way to achieve a good shot is to get one of you to stand facing the camera. Look through the lens, press the shutter halfway down and focus. Set the timer and run into position. You should end up with a nice clean shot.


Self timed photos can look forced so a lot of the time the boy and I will be chatting while the camera is beeping away and then smile just as it clicks. For the photo above I set my phone on its side in the sand, set the timer and then turned my back on it. The boy and I just talked, for much longer than the 10 seconds the timer was going for but it was a natural photo as a result.

Get the details
Sometimes the details speak louder than the smiles. Details are so easy to capture and more often than not don't need a self timer. I try and capture the little everyday things about us. The socks on the bed and holding hands. These are simple shots to take with your phone.


My other favourite photo to take is the shoe shot! The boy does despair of this one! I like how it conveys the journey and immediately says "him and her" without having to explain it.


Another way to think about 'couple photos' is to branch out from getting the full picture. For these I placed my camera on the table, made sure the boy was in focus, set the timer and then went to talk to him by the window. You can't see our faces but I think the story is there in the hands and in may respects it looks far less forced than just a smiling shot. This could easily work if one of you isn't too happy to be in front of the camera.


Do what works
As I was writing up this post I was searching through photos and the thing that came out was that the boy and I have a 'pose'! This seems to work for us! It's easy, it works for self timed photos or handing your camera to a relative or child and we tend to get a good shot. (All but one of the photos below are self timer) I think it can take a bit of time to work out what is comfortable but once you have it, photo taking as a couple is easy because you both know what you are doing!

Make life easy
Good light and a good setting and your photo is halfway there. I know that the boy is not a huge fan of the camera so I guess it is in both of our interests if we can capture a nice photo in a short period of time. That's not to say I won't bother taking the photo if the day is gloomy, it's just I have to work harder to find the light. If in doubt I head for a window!


One of my all time favourite photos of the boy is taken on the wall in our garden. It was at the end of a party, the sun was getting low and the flowers were out. I sat up on the wall with the boy and asked my brother to take the photo on my phone. Half the work was done for me with the setting and the light. Take the opportunities when you can!

If in doubt take a selfie
I think these are such a fun way to take a quick photo. My number one tip would be to get the taller of you to hold the phone. I have cut the boys head off (not literally you understand) on too many occasions! Or, if all else fails use a mirror, although I can't guarantee sensible behaviour!


At the end of the day I am always glad I took the time to stop for a couple of minutes and take a photo. Granted they are not always perfect but they are always 'us'.

Do you take photos of you and your other half or have you taken photos of other couples? What has worked for you?

11 comments:

Kirsty.A said...

I have an album full of photos of the children, quite a lot of me and the children and maybe 20 of my and my husband, And we have been married for 15 years! He hates it. He just won't play, so I have to be sneaky and take an unposed shot of him before he realises I have the camera then collage it with set shots of the rest of us doing whatever we are doing

Kirsty.A said...

I have an album full of photos of the children, quite a lot of me and the children and maybe 20 of my and my husband, And we have been married for 15 years! He hates it. He just won't play, so I have to be sneaky and take an unposed shot of him before he realises I have the camera then collage it with set shots of the rest of us doing whatever we are doing

vickiparker said...

Some great ideas there. Have made a point of taking a couple photo each month for the past couple of years. Nothing flash but nice to look back on and see where we were - mostly selfie type photos. He humours me. LOL

Mel said...

My husband hates photos and so i always ask why he married a scrapbooker then! Great post and it seems the boy humours you!

Jo.C said...

Brilliant post - I love seeing your photos as they are so creative and I like hearing the process behind it. I love the detail shots but never seem to think to take them.

debs14 said...

You are the expert as these lovely 'couples' photos. I need to check out that phone self timer as I always get my outstretched arm in selfies!

Karen said...

Great suggestions. And sadly I almost never think to take a photo of just us---especially on a normal day. Should remedy that, I think.

Fiona@Staring at the Sea said...

Great post Abi. Always interesting to hear the process. You do get some lovely shots of you both. Other than our wedding photos, I think I have one of us!

Maria Ontiveros said...

Uh, you don't actually look like you're "talking" in that first photo. LOL! Seriously, these are wonderful suggestions and great photos.
Rinda

alexa said...

Wonderful tips and very sweet photos, Abi - golly, six years :).

Nathalie said...

This is a very inspiring post... I have very few photos of my husband and i. It seems like you take less and less as you grow old together but your post inspires me to remedy that!