Welcome to the forum!

As an adjunct to the Tangents blog, the intention with this forum is to answer any questions, and allow a diverse discussion of topics related photography. With that, see it as an open invitation to just climb in and start threads and to respond to any threads.

Posing couples of different heights

I have a wedding in two weeks time, and the Groom is considerably taller than the Bride I am guessing by around 14 inches. I am looking for posing ideas for the formal couple portraits, anyone got any ideas or had experience of this? Of course I can shoot from above, which will help reduce some of the height differences, but I can't do this for all of the shots.


  • hkulahkula Member
    I am also in the same situation. I look forward to reading tips and recommendations from this forum.
  • TrevTrev Moderator
    edited May 2016

    I have had a couple of those and there are options available.

    1] Seating: If possible have the couple seated with her laying back into him a bit, the difference is less noticeable

    2] Rocks/Walls: If there are any rocks, low walls have bride standing on them to bring them up in height a bit better

    3] Steps, same with steps, sitting on them, also have her higher if possible bending down to kiss him, but, show the full shot as it will be a 'fun' type shot as well as just a good composition. If there is level ground on the top of the steps have her standing on that close to the edge, have groom maybe on the 2nd step down so she has to bend down juuust that little bit.

    4] Small ledge same as rocks/steps, have bride stand, to bring her up a bit, remember all the above can be adjusted also with composition as in you don't need to always have full length shots so 3/4 1/2 body shots will then look great, but, don't bring her up to his height, as it will look out of balance when you have full lengths comparison as you still want to have them fairly 'normal'.

    5] Sometimes if on beach there will be small rocks she can stand on to bring her up just that bit, having the top of her head around shoulder height on him or a bit below is a good balance I find, you still get the 'height difference' look but it's not too large a gap. You will be surprised at just how small a 'step up' she has to be to get a good balance.

    Things not to do:

    1] Don't have him bending right over her, it's awkward and not flattering and looks too 'dominating' a position for a nice shot.

    2] Don't have him half kneeling/squatting down, the body posture will look wrong even if just trying to get a 1/2 length shot

    3] Don't have her sitting down and him standing over her, looks overbearing, but, you can have him sit down on a bench, with her standing behind him, or, have him sit on a step and she sits on the step above him with her arms wrapped around his waist with her head resting gently on a shoulder so the 'plane' is pretty equal for the shot, especially when using wide open lenses.

    I am sure there are plenty of other things to do that can help, depends on where/when you go on location.

    During the ceremony, you are stuck with what you see, obviously, so then that will just be 'the couple as they are' so to speak.

    As I said above, don't have him leaning 'over' to the side a bit with her standing straight up, looks wrong, unless, you have him really exaggerate his 'leaning' as in have them face each other, he stands apart a bit and leans over holding her 'back' hand and his back hand maybe kissing her on the hand, then they both lean in for a kiss.

    If possible during shots like that I try to avoid having their 'front' hands touching, especially up high as that tends to 'block' across their bodies, just my preference, of course during the frenzy of grabbing shots sometimes that goes out the window. :)

  • Hi Trev, thanks for the tips. Yes I was already thinking about having them seated, which has the benefit to even out the height differences. I often do this for corporate clients on commercial shoots. I really want to avoid taking steps or a box for the bride to stand on, as I think it will make her feel uncomfortable about her height. But of course everyone can see there is a significant height difference, just want to make it less obvious in the wedding day photos.
  • hkulahkula Member
    Hi Trev,
    Thanks for the tips.

  • Neil vNNeil vN Administrator
    Trev has excellent suggestions there. 

    I would like to also add, for the basic pose, don't have them stand next to each other. Have her in front of him, leaning into him. This way there isn't that immediate comparison in height. 

    Another pose that I do that works as a tight portrait - have her stand on a bench or a low wall or a rock, and have her hug him from behind. Use her bouquet by letting her dangle it slightly loosely. But also do some without the bouquet. Let them goof around a bit with this pose! 

    And I do agree with Trev that you need to be aware that the groom doesn't lean in towards her - it just looks awkward. 
Sign In or Register to comment.