Sometimes sweet couples contact us with a request. “We would love to take some photos in Rome or Florence or in beautiful big city”
We LOVE when couples ask us something like that but there are few tips to shoot in crowded and congested places and still make it look like you are the only people there.
The good thing about photographing in high-traffic areas is that there are some epic locations to shoot. Have you ever think about Fontana di Trevi or Colosseum? That’s why they’re highly trafficked!
The bad thing about it is this: there are so many people coming from so many directions all at the time (they never seem to stop!) that it’s almost impossible to get big, wide, pulled back images that showcase the landscape and landmarks of an area without having a bunch of people in the background.
After some trouble-shooting and patience, we figured it out, though, and today we’ve got a few tips for you on how to make the most of it.
1. SHOOT AT THE SUNRISE
Our preference for scheduling sessions is always a couple of hours before sunset. However, sometimes a sunrise session is highly recommended. A sunrise session is ideal in order to avoid the crowds. If you want a city all to yourselves sunrise wakeup is worth the effort. The only tourists in sight will be you two! If you choose a summer month when it is very hot, sunrise is cooler than sunset.
2. BE PATIENT
There are some spots that are worth waiting for, and others that aren’t. When we found ones that weren’t, we moved on quickly, but when we find ones that were, we tried to be patient enough to wait it out. We kept reminding ourselves that we were in a beautiful place and had a few iconic shots in mind that we just had to get, because we would’ve kicked ourselves later for not waiting a few extra minutes until the coast was clear to get an image that we might not have ever gotten again – or at least not for a very long time.
3. COMMUNICATE CLEARLY TO CLIENTS
It’s already hard enough for our couples to hear us when we’re behind the camera, but when we factor in city traffic, wind, people on foot, bicycles, carriages, and street musicians, it’s tough to hear. Really tough! So, we made sure to, when we could, give posing instructions at close distance, then we’d back up to shoot. We’d even use hand signals and we mimic different poses :D
4. WE GIVE OUR COUPLES A COUNT DOWN
When our couple was on a bridge or in the middle of a busy intersection, we only had a few seconds to nail the ideal shot before foot or car traffic picked back up, but we also needed them to stay in one pose long enough for us to compose the shot multiple ways. If they fell out of the pose, we didn’t have time to correct them and pick back up before traffic got going, so we’d all have to wait again for the next opportunity, which would’ve meant wasted time. So, instead, we gave them countdowns to make sure they’d be able to hold the pose long enough without us having to say anything. For example: we’d say, “Okay, count to ten in your head while you kiss,” or “Hold each other close and count to five in your heads.” That kind of specificity got us exactly what we needed from them, so that we could get epic moments.
5. WE START WITH CLOSE-UPS
We shoot tighter than a lot of Italians photographers. We LOVE some close up and some people centred images. So, because we shoot tighter, we’re used to interacting with our couples from a close, comfortable distance without competing with hundreds of pedestrians getting between our couples and our cameras. When an area became too crowded we are able to shoot tighter without waste any time!