We walked the grounds of The Getty Museum shortly after the museum opened in Los Angeles, California. I was very excited to shoot here but a little nervous because we were not sure The Getty would allow us to shoot engagement pictures on the property. I was prepared to ask for forgiveness. Turns out, they are ok with it.
We happened upon the outdoor cafeteria, which was surprisingly sparse of patrons. I knew the empty tables would make an interesting visual as long as I could get above my couple. I saw that I could take an elevator to the level above, so I directed my couple to the table where I wanted them to execute my vision; I told them I would take the elevator upstairs and then direct them once I got upstairs. When I arrived above, I looked down and my couple in close, and talking intimately. I said, Todd, give her a kiss. Click, I knew I captured an image better than I had visualized in my head previously. I was done.
When I am behind the camera, I give suggestions as a form of direction, then watch what my couples do. I feel the images I capture this way are more relaxed using this technique. Occasionally, I will refine how they move or pose, in order to make the images flattering for my couple. By allowing my couples to do what comes naturally to them, I capture images that I wouldn't have been able to direct, even if I tried.
Location: Getty Museum, Los Angeles.