How to go from awkward to unforgettable during a photoshoot.

This is a question I get asked all the time: how do you make sure it isn’t awkward when you are shooting, specially with couples? 

The answer is: people are hiring you for who you are, for your art, and the vibes you are bringing to the shoot with you. So make sure you pack those in your camera bag with you. 

There are things that will make it easier and don’t worry, I am not here to gate keep anything from you, I am here to help you. Why? Because there is room for everyone to succeed!


1- Break the ice

I always talk to my clients about whatever they want to talk; personal life, living in Hawaii, surfing, traveling, photography, kids, investing, you name it. But, I ask them questions, too, we have a good rhythm flowing of back and forthness. And me being open and talking about things they like talking makes them more open, happier and feel like they are hanging out with a friend not there to awkwardly pose for pictures. 

2- Music

 I always bring music, and i always ask if they have a playlist or a favorite song they would like to play. 99% of the time they trust me with my music and not to brag, but i do have pretty good taste in music 🙂

3- Location!!! 

Caroline, why is this important? Ok, imagine you are in Hawaii taking photos with your boo and the photographer says: “now you guys roll around the sand and make out passionately” (yes thats something I would say) But would I say it in Waikiki or Waimea bay on a Sunday afternoon? NO! Why? Because EVERYBODY and their mother will be there!!!! You want your peeps to feel comfortable to do this sort of poses and play such games, you don’t want them (and everyone around) to feel awkward. So yeah, location matters more than just for the background.

4- Connection

I learned something in the past six years that is so simple but so important at the same time: CALL OR FACETIME YOUR CLIENTS BEFORE SHOOTING. 

This is valuable because: you will get to know each other before the date of the shoot and you will know what they look like (facetime) so on the day of you are not looking for them in a sea of people.

After I call with my clients I always tell them to text me instead of emailing me so things are not so formal and it easier to shoot a text than an email. 


Okay, so this one is very personal and every single one of us has a different gift. For some is being kind, gentle and romantic for some is their vibe, their sense of humor and easygoingness and I relate a lot to the latter, and in reviews or after shoot convos most of my clients say: “you made us feel so comfortable” or “thanks for breaking the ice and making sure we were ourselves” “thanks for sharing this story” “thanks for the tips about Hawaii” “thank you for waking up at 4 am to take photos of us during sunrise”.

These are just a few examples, but mainly what i am saying that you’re not just hired to take photos, you’re hired to bring a vibe and make those photos something these people will cherish forever, mainly because they will remember how you made them feel whilst you were taking them. 

I hope this was helpful and I can’t wait to connect with you again. 






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