Yael Pachino Photography

YPP’s Four Top Base Poses for Couple Portraits

“We just don’t know what we are doing in front of the camera like at all!” 

“That’s why I’m here!”

This is a conversation I have almost every single time I sit down with a couple for their wedding consultation. I get it. I know it’s hard. I know we are the generation that created the selfie and we have spent years perfecting it but still feels super awkward when anyone else points the camera at us. I know most of us haven’t even had a professional photo taken of us since our Mitzvahs or High School Yearbooks! I know! I get it! I understand your concerns. I understand the nervousness and the discomfort. But, I have good news…

I have taken the time to study, practice and master posing and now I know how to coach my couples into poses that feel genuine and true. I don’t want your photos to feel posed. And I definitely don’t want your photos to look rigid. I want them to feel like you. I want them to look as happy as you feel! That’s why I like to coach and guide my couples. It helps them find what works for them without feeling forced. My business’s main goal is to make my clients feel as happy and as comfortable in front of the camera as possible! My purpose is to make you fall in love with your photos! My intention is to make your wedding day run as smoothly as possible, especially when you are standing in front of my camera!

So, let’s not wait until your engagement session or wedding day. Let’s settle some of those concerns right here and right now! You are about to read something that is so near and dear to me, I seriously cannot believe I am writing this! These are my top four FAVORITE YP Couple Base Poses! This is big stuff guys! This is the meat and potatoes of my posing techniques and I am beyond excited to sharing them with you!!

You may be wondering, what the heck is a base pose, Yael?

Well, let me start from the beginning. I like to think of posing as a pyramid. You start with the bottom of your body and then work up. You start with where your put your feet and the rest will fall into place (with my help of course)!

Warning: The name of my base poses may not be clever, but they get the job done and sometimes that is all we can really ask for!

For the purpose of this blog post, instead of calling our couple “Man” and “Woman” in the instructions, I am going to give them names “David will refer to the man and Rachael will refer to the woman. This way, it sounds a lot less robotic, at least to me.  😊😊😊

Base Pose One: Belly to Hip Bone

My nickname for this base pose is also the “HI MOM!”

This is the pose I like to use for the classic, standing next to each other looking at the camera, smiling pose! It’s the pose that every mom really loves because she gets to see your entire face happy, smiling at her!

Step 1: Have David stand with his body straight to the camera. One foot slightly in front of the other with a little bend in the knee (this way, it doesn’t look or feel stiff)! 

Step 2: Have David’s beautiful fiancé, Rachael put her belly button to his hipbone (instead of  her having her body straight on to the camera).  This way Rachael has her body turned towards his. Rachael will then put all of her weight on her back foot. Rachael will put a slight bend in her front knee.

Step 3: Make sure there is no room between David and Rachael! They need to be touching!!

So why do I do this?! Well, it’s simple, a man looks his best when his shoulders are at their broadest (this is why suits look incredible on all men, it shows off their broad shoulders)! Women, don’t want to look broad in the same way men do! That’s why, I like to have our women turned sideways and put all of their body weight on their back foot. It flatters our curves in the best possible way!

Base Pose Two: Belly to Belly

I told you my names for the poses aren’t clever 😁

This pose is the one I like to use when I want my couples to really snuggle up and get all close and personal! It is literally exactly what it sounds like!

Step One: Have both David and Rachael face each other. Have their belly buttons touching. This way they are as close as possible!

Step Two: Add that extra little bend in Rachael’s front knee as she distributes all of her weight onto her back foot!

Step Three: Have David wrap his arms around Rachael’s waist, tight enough so it clinches at the waist, but loose enough so she can breath!! 

Base Pose Three: The Prom Pose 2.0

We all remember the prom pose, and I promise, this will NOT look as cheesy as it sounds!! This one I like to use for intimate, yet fun photos.  

Step One: David stands behind Rachael. But instead of putting him directly behind Rachael, move him slightly to the side. Not too much space so David can still put his arms around Rachael!


Step Two: Have Rachael stand in front of David with one of her knees having a slight bend (make it more casual and not stiff)!


Step Three: Have David put his arms around Rachael

Step Four: Have Rachael put her hands over David’s arms or hands, whatever is comfortable. 

This way David’s body is wrapping around Rachael! It shows off his broad shoulders and makes her look cute and cuddly!

Base Pose Four: Splitting The Chest

This name always confuses people and I totally get it! So let me just explain it!

Step One: Have David stand with his body straight to the camera, kind of like in Base Pose One (Belly to Hipbone). David should have one foot slightly in front of the other with a casual bend in his front knee.


Step Two: Rachael stands next to David. Have Rachael take a very small step back (but still on his side).

Step Three: Have Rachael turn her body and face David.

Step Four: Have Rachael turn her body so her chest is touching his upper arm. In other words, his arm and shoulder will be in front of half of Rachael’s body (look up at photo example and notice the position of his arm and her body)! 

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