Expert Tips for an Awesome Photo Shoot

Do you remember your first photo shoot? I will never forget the first professional shoot of my first born. I timed it perfectly, she was six months old, could sit up, lost her baby acne, and was on a nap schedule that we could plan around. I found an adorable outfit for the shoot…a cream colored onesie with a scalloped neckline and flowers embroidered on the bodice, a beautiful organza skirt attached, and a matching bonnet. All was perfect that day, except for her mood! We couldn’t get her to smile. She was completely exhausted by the experience, and it showed. I was disappointed that day, but in retrospect I have the most telling and honest photos of my daughter.

Twelve years later, I still go to extremes to plan for photo shoots. It helps when you work with photographers that can give you tips and put you at ease. At our last shoot, I was thankful to have the pleasure of working with a pair of extremely talented photographers, Bernadette and Rick of Narrative Images Photography. I was turned on to this duo by my client, bride to be, Jaime. I was blown away by the engagement photos they took of Jaime and her fiancé, Jared, and couldn’t wait to work with them too.

Working with Bernadette and Rick was such a pleasure. Their work is artistic and soulful. For our shoot, they encouraged us to bring items that meant something to our family so that the kids could relax in the shoot. So, we brought jump ropes and our indo board and got some really cool photos that way.

I had the opportunity to sit down and get to know Bernadette and Rick better over lunch and learned how they create beautiful and meaningful pictures for their clients. Bernadette and Rick emphasized that their work is rooted in what is natural and authentic so that their pictures tell a story. They hone in on what is meaningful to their clients. One engagement shoot was taken at the airport because this is where the bride and groom met each other. At weddings, Bernadette and Rick are “keen observers and see things that people may not be aware of.” They work to honor the moment and capture the essence of the celebration and work to portray it in a unique way. This team works beautifully together with technical strengths that complement each other. Rick is tuned into light and how it works and Bernadette is skilled at composition. Their personalities also pair well. Rick is thoughtful and pensive, creative and laid back while Bernadette is caring, intuitive, and passionate. These qualities put their clients at ease.

Bernadette and Rick offer some great advice to brides and grooms.

  • For engagement photos, choose a location that has meaning to the two of you. When you look back at the images in future years, they will be more than just pretty photos. They will tell the story of your relationship at this time in your life.

  • Collaborate with your photographers before your wedding to be sure there is sufficient time allotted for the pictures you want.Some locations and shots are very dependent on lighting and time of day.

  • On the wedding day, be present. Relax, have fun, and enjoy your guests.It’s the photographer’s job to document all of the moments that unfold.

  • Eat. Sounds simple, but easy to forget.

  • Stay hydrated. It’s a long day with lots of excitement. Take care of yourself so you can have fun and soak it all in.

You may view Bernadette and Rick’s photography at

Do you have additional tips for a photo shoot? If so, we’d love to hear from you.

More about Bernadette and Rick of Narrative Images:


Bernadette and Rick’s story began in New York where they met while studying photography and sociology. Combining a photojournalistic and documentary perspective, they were able to document and explore the issues they were most passionate about during their travels through the US, Europe, Southern Africa, the Caribbean and South America. They photographed their first wedding together as photography students and realized that they could apply this same documentary perspective to tell the story of one of the most significant events in many people’s lives. After getting married in 2006, they started Narrative Images so that they could telling people's stories and documenting life’s most significant events and moments.

#photo #weddings #weddingphotos #sandiegoweddings #sandiegoweddingplanner #sandiegoweddingphotographers

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