How to Run Day in the Life Photography with a Couple

So often it seems like couples without children feel that the details of their daily lives aren’t “photo-worthy.”

And that makes me so sad, because in 20 years, when they’re looking back on where they started, I know they’ll feel completely different about it. They’ll wish they could remember those seemingly insignificant details of the beginning of their life together.

I look at this session and think if this couple gets married, their children and grandchildren will look at these photos and cherish them.

My mom recently made DVD copies of some of their old home videos from the 1960s! Seriously incredible!

I’ve seen a snapshot here and there of my mom, uncles and grandparents back then, but seeing entire videos of birthday parties, football games, seeing my great-grandparents’ anniversary celebration, and watching my mom and her brothers playing in the kiddie pool during the hot Miami summer?

Well, that was an entirely new world for me.

I was able to see the full stories rather than just a single snapshot of a child smiling for the camera. I saw their personalities shine in those videos and it was priceless.

Pin this image to bookmark Jessie’s story:

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This is why “A Day in the Life” sessions are so dear to my heart.

They’re real.

By looking at the little details of a person’s day and life, you see their personality, dreams, character, and heart. You don’t always see that as much when you pose a couple on a bench and ask them to “smile for the camera.”

Overall, looking through this couple’s story, you feel a connection and love through the smallest details. Some people may not think that riding the subway together or making coffee are special moments, but they are.

The truth is, we, as a society, are too busy with life. We don’t take time out to savor those little moments and see the beauty in them. These are the pieces of our lives that make up our stories and these are the moments that should and will be treasured forever by many generations to come!

Are you wanting to photograph a couple with a documentary approach? Do it!

Meet with your clients over lunch one day and just chat them up.

Get them to tell you about their relationship and their life together. Listen.

That’s the most important thing I could tell you. Listen to what they’re telling you, because a lot of times the client doesn’t even realize that the things they’re telling you are the beautiful pieces of their lives that ARE worth documenting.

Keep these things in mind when you show up for their session. You aren’t planning necessarily, but you have those ideas at the forefront of your mind, so that when they happen, you recognize it and are ready to grab that shot.

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I shot this primarily with a Sigma Art 35mm 1.4 lens, and a Canon 6D. The 35mm is the ideal focal length for documentary sessions, because they give you a wide enough angle to get the full story in the picture while at the same time you have the option to move in a little closer to grab those super important details that add so much interest to every documentary session.

Writing and photography contributed by Jessie Fultz.

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Author: MarieMasse
I help client documentary photographers fine-tune their workflow + marketing game, so their work is filled with sessions that represent their voice + client values while earning a living. I shoot undirected, off-beat stories that aren’t preserved often enough (like the story of couples before starting a fam or becoming empty-nesters – a dream project of mine), so my clients’ old box of photos is a meaningful, visual diary of their life + legacy to leave behind.

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