I'm going to be candid
I think its a myth when everyone thinks that guys don't like to get their photos taken. When wedding day comes around I often find them in the room with his groomsmen drinking scotch, whisky, beer, or anything to calm the nerves. It's (almost) a good strategy but what tends to happen is create a blush on their cheeks, red eyes, they come more defensive or available(if you're that type of drinker.) Which could ruin or make for the real and authentic photo.
When photographing them during their segment of the wedding day, I pull him aside to connect with the groom on a deeper level. I ask him how he's feeling and it's somewhere a long the lines of..."Anxious, excited, happy, and 'im looking forward for this...'" guys aren't the most complex species(I'm a guy, I know.) I tend to want 'to get things over with.' And photographing me, even though that I've been behind the camera, countless of times, I tense up. All of that "authenticity" becomes like a guard, in an instant. Even a smile feels like a defense that just gets activated as an automatic mechanism when someone tells me to smile, or do this, or do that. If someone tells me to do something, I'd do it but it wont be the real "me"
It's not like men don't like to get their portraits taken. There are billions of men who gets their portraits taken. It's just we're used to getting terrible angles of us, so we know its going to be bad, and we're reluctant for someone to take photos of us. I barely take selfies of myself, or even if someone does, I usually hate the photo because I looked surprised, mad, or I wasn't prepared for it. The thought of getting a photo taken is the same feeling as getting a flu shot or vaccine. It's the thought of getting a needle poke but, photographs aren't that. To dispel this, I have to ask the right questions.
For example, 'How are you feeling?' is a good opening line but it might not be the most effective because its usually incomplete. 'Anxious, excited, happy,' they don't break them open. 'What are you most excited about your day?,' 'What are you anxious about?,' 'where do you plan your honeymoon?'
Breaking the ice
I like to introduce myself to the guys because not only it says that, 'I'm here, I'm a pro!' It means that 'I know what to do,' 'you're in good hands.' If I read the room correctly, I can follow it up with, 'I am the best photographer around because the bride paid top dollar' Thus adding a bit of playfulness and slight challenge in the room. If I read the room differently and don't want to add more energy because it's serious, or the personality is subtle, "I can be a fly on the wall, but I encourage everyone to come up to me and ask me for a photo"
Set up some ground rules;
- There are no rules.
- "The first rule of Fight Club is: you do not talk about Fight Club." - Fight Club
- "What we've got here is failure to communicate." - Cool Hand Luke
- "You can't handle the truth!" - A Few Good Men
- "I'm gonna make him an offer he can't refuse." - The Godfather
Sometimes when the groom and I connect really well during our pre-wedding consultations, there's really no need for me to break the ice. Instead, the best clients are the ones who invites me in their holy ground and be the best buddies. I can say the same with the brides because they know what to expect and all they really need to focus on, is themselves.
I had the pleasuring working with Sydney Rose for a wedding she led and shot a week ago. She's one of the best hype woman I know and can easily break the ice despite how little she knows them. Working with her has taught me so much how dressing up and look inviting, can really make a huge difference when working with couples who have only known me through phone calls or zoom.
So whether I've created an expectation before the wedding or on the day of, my goal is to make sure that I am connecting, not just the bride and the groom, but also their guests.
When I take a portrait of the groom, I look for strength and vulnerability, depth and authenticity, tenacity and resolve. Photographing people shouldn't always be "smile for the camera." Surface level, if thats what you came for, I am not your photographer. In the moments that lead up to the click of my shutter, I am full of hope that I've captured what I feel and that what they've shown me is who they are, not what everyone else wants them to be. (Maybe except the bride).
I want to leave you with this quote by Ralph Waldo Emerson. "Be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment."
When you want an authentic photo, I want the groom to connect with me, share with me what you like, ask me questions about my photography, what makes me tick, what I'm like when Ironman snapped his finger at End Game, because what happens when you open up to a photographer or anyone for that matter, the idea of your getting your photos taken becomes a fun, authentic, and meaningful! (fam!)
"be yourself in a world that is constantly trying to make you something else is the greatest accomplishment”
Ralph Waldo Emerson
HEY! I'M GLENN GUIAO
Learn how to get a free engagement session
Hi there! I'm a wedding and portrait photographer based in Wilmington, NC. I have a passion for capturing the beauty and joy of life's most precious moments through my lens.
With years of experience and a keen eye for detail, I specialize in creating stunning, natural images that reflect the unique personalities of my clients. Whether you're getting married or looking to capture a special family moment, I am dedicated to creating beautiful, timeless photographs that you will cherish for a lifetime.
How many photos am I going to get for a wedding?
Normally I'll send between 100-120 per hour session, which means in a typical 8 hour session, you'll receive about 800-960 photos. Not every wedding is the same. It will also depend on how dense the timeline is going to be.
How much does it cost to hire a photographer?
A seasoned photographer can cost about $3000. This will depend on the location, the saturation of the market, cost of doing business, etc. My packages start at $3300.
Do I need a second wedding photographer
It depends on your needs. For a full coverage, a second wedding photographer is a must. There are many useful things a second photographer can do. Weddings with 50+ guests can give the lead photographer a relief between sections of the wedding. They can photograph your significant other getting ready. They can slow down and find beautiful compositions while the second gets the essential shot list. A single photographer can't be at two places at once. They could be photographing a family wanting a photo of them, another could be photographing you.
How should I have a wedding photographer for?
8 hours. That's usually the traditional wedding from Getting ready to Reception. However, there are options for a longer or shorter reception.
Maria & Herson
"Glenn has been nothing but terrific as our photographer. Between the year that we had our engagement photos done and the day of the wedding, he checked in with me and offered answers and guidance; including tips on overcoming awkwardness in front of the camera! It really helped that we had done our engagement photos and had those check-ins, because we felt way more comfortable during our next photo shoot as a result. The day of our wedding he was our superstar vendor by going above and beyond through communication and people-wrangling. My only wish is that we would have booked him for a larger package."
"Glenn was an absolute pleasure to work with! He is so positive and has such great energy! On a day that flew by and felt hectic most of the time (our wedding), Glenn was the easiest and most fun vendor we worked with! We also received the pictures and they look amazing! We could not be happier with how they came out. Would highly recommend him for weddings or other events."
"It was incredible to work with and have Glenn with us on our wedding day. Booking was a breeze with a detailed and professional consultation. Day of, he seamlessly fit into the group and became a family member almost instantly. He made us feel comfortable in front of the camera and did a great job catching staged and candid photos. The shots he captured were beautiful, artistic, and some of the best pictures I've ever seen. His picture composition, color balancing, and focus is stunning and his experience shines through his work. The pricing for the photos and his time were very reasonable for the quality of work produced. 10/10 would recommend"