Many people absolutely hate the way they look in front of the camera. And really, it's understandable - in pictures, you see yourself in ways and angles that you aren't used to seeing. Luckily, there are a few things you can do to help.
You may feel stupid, but practice in the mirror ahead of time. Figure out which side of your face photographs better, practice facial expressions and natural looking smiles, and get an idea of what poses work best for your body using some of the suggestions below. The one caveat to practicing in front of a mirror? Don't do it to the point that you can't feel natural in front of a camera anymore.
Good posture and a long neck go a long way in making you look slimmer in pictures. Stretch out your neck and tilt your head down just slightly to avoid the appearance of a double chin. If you are standing, plant your legs at a 45 degree angle to the camera with one leg a step back, and shift your weight to that back leg. Twist at your waist toward the camera, so your upper torso is facing the camera but your lower torso is angled slightly away from it. If you aren't sure what this pose looks like, open any fashion or gossip magazine - stars and models have this pose down perfectly.
If you’re sitting, be sure to sit up straight and point your knees away from the camera. Also, rather than pressing your arms to your side, hold them slightly away from your body so they look toned and slim. If you are carrying a bouquet, try holding it slightly lower than your waist and point the fullest part toward the camera, so that the best part of the flowers - the top - is captured. Although it feels natural and fun, avoid posing with both arms stretched around the people beside you - it broadens your shoulders in an unflattering way and more than a few, um, bosoms have popped out of strapless dresses!
While posing, think happy thoughts. You don’t necessarily have to “make love to the camera,” but think happy thoughts toward it at the very least. After shooting for what may seem like hours, your cheeks may start to hurt. The solution? Give your poor face a rest and don’t smile between pictures. If you have a problem blinking when you get your picture taken, close your eyes and then open them when the photographer is snapping the picture (it helps if the photographer announces when each picture will be taken by saying, “On three - one!...two!...three!”). If they aren't doing that, ask them to!
Despite all this complicated advice, the best thing you can do to look good in front of a camera is to relax and have fun! It sounds trite and obvious, but it really works.