Some of this content was taken from "What to Wear Guide" Written by Unscripted. All photos are by Melanie Cooper Studios LLC
Let's Talk Clothes
Dressing yourself in the morning is hard enough when you don’t have to stand in front of a camera and be your best self.
Choosing what to wear for a photoshoot can trigger even the most confident, farshun-ey fashionista to pull their entire wardrobe out onto the floor in search of the perfect outfit.
It’s not uncommon for people to want to shop for new, sparkly, fabulous clothes to wear to a photoshoot. And that’s totally fine - if that’s your jam. But let’s talk about comfort a little more. Do you think you’d be more comfortable in your favorite t-shirt and jeans or a new clingy little black dress? The best route is usually to go with something that’s tried and true.
Something you know moves with you and hugs you in all the right places.
Don’t get me wrong - it 100% does not have to be jeans and a t-shirt. You can glam it up a bit more if that’s what you fancy. But if authenticity is what you’re after, you’re going to have to show up as yourself. And if you want to capture this time of your life in all its glory, then it’s about the feeling of being in your own skin.
Match Your Outfit to the Season and Location
If you’re wearing a fancy ball gown in your living room, the viewer might assume you’re going to prom. Don a little sundress number in a snowy field and the viewer might suffer from a crippling amount of pity for you.
You and I will be collaborating on telling your story together, so let’s get this right.
Plan your outfits around what you know about the conditions at the location we’ll be shooting at. You’ll want to be warm enough (or cool enough!), have pain-free feet, and
look relatively native to your environment.
For at home sessions, slip into your comfiest comfies and rock that (pants optional). The idea is to authentically capture you wherever you are. Think through your clothing choices logically based on location, vibe, and comfort level.
Bring Multiple Outfits
Gather up 2 or 3 outfits that you feel amazing in and we can play around with different combinations on the day. I’m not trying to photocopy trends in all their boring hues, I’m
looking for the you-est you. Bring things that help you express yourself--I want you to grace my lens with your true, full personality!
Providing options helps me to make sure your threads compliment the environment - keeping the focus on you, where it should be!
Color Theory in Action
Remember the colour wheel from 6th grade art class?
Maybe you’ve gladly left your middle school days in the past, but the colour wheel comes in handy when making good colour decisions (aka planning what to wear). The colour wheel is a great reference point when trying to figure out what colours look a bit weird together and what colours are a match made in heaven.
These colours, the ones that look incredible together, are called complementary colours. They complement each other and create a visual harmony. They’re salt and pepper, Bonnie and Clyde, peanut butter and jelly. Complementary colours sit across from one another on the colour wheel (i.e. blue and orange, red and green, yellow and purple).
Below are some examples that show us how complementary colours do special things for the big picture.
But it’s not all about contrast. We’re all built so differently and respond to colour combinations differently. For those less taken by the ‘pop,’ analogous colours could be the way to go. Analogous colours are next to each other on the colour wheel, and can be quite soothing to the eye. Think of the jungle and all of the lush variations of green, or the ocean and the infinite hues of blue.
Color Pallet Examples
Complimentary, Good! Matching, Bad.
Complement each other, don’t match each other.
You don’t want to create the illusion of being your partner’s siamese twin. When multiple people wear the same colour,
sometimes their matching outfits blend together so much that you can’t really see any of them properly. The viewer can’t
tell where one person begins and another one ends. They turn into one uniform blob.
In order for the aesthetics of your photograph to really sing, you want to find complementary outfits that showcase a variety of colors, textures, accessories, patterns, and tones. Complement the other people in the photograph as well as your surroundings.
The idea is to have everything look good together without everything looking the same.
Be Careful with Pattern & Prints
Avoid large bold patterns as they often dominate the photograph and detract attention from your beautiful face.
Usually, subtle smaller patterns work best. Flannels or a light floral print are great when they complement the location. But less is definitely more with this one, try to limit yourself to one pattern at a time. Matching patterns is a tricky task, and it’s super difficult to do well.
If you’re not quite sure what category your patterned clothes fall into, shoot me an
email or send me a text and I’ll be happy to weigh in.