Do the walking routine
If there is one thing that you will need to understand about the concept of documentary wedding photography, if would have to be the fact that the pictures should look natural or candid and beautiful as well all at the same time. Believe it or not, this actually requires far more planning and effort than it actually looks. There are so many different contributing factors that you would need to consider and more than that, you will need a good lineup of planned poses that look natural. This sounds ironic, at best but when it all comes down to it; it is how things work and you should embrace it other than fight it because it will make things so much easier for you at the end of the day. One of the most uncontrived looking poses that you can go for is the walking routine.
Walking is something that occurs naturally to everyone and thus, can make the people you are photographing a little less conscious of the fact that there is a camera following them around. Ask the bride and the groom to talk about their plans for the next day, something light and maybe a little funny to make the photos look authentic. Take photos of them walking away from you and do the same for the part where they are walking back. This is one of the oldest tricks out there but something that still exists up to this day because of the fact that it actually works.
Learn how to use the art of complimenting. Complimenting can really bring out the best in people.
If you are having a hard time in capturing the most genuine looking smiles, try to pepper out a few well placed compliments and watch the magic unfold. Documentary wedding photography is all about the unplanned and the candid moments and it is usually particularly effective if the people you are taking photos of are left a little taken aback by the compliments. You need to make sure that you keep the compliments appropriate though and make sure that you never go out of line, unless you want to deal with awkward and uncomfortable reactions to your compliments. This is something that works more on the women though, and not so much on the mean so make sure that you are able to tread this carefully and proceed with caution.
Learn how to identify social cues of interesting conversations or meaningful moments.
As a documentary wedding photographer, you need to be able to position yourself before the meaningful moments actually happen. This is something that requires a lot of work and experience but if you seriously commit to it and spend a lot of time practicing it, you should be able to pull it off without that much difficulty. Learn how to identify the usual cues such as laughing, some light banter, and the like and you should be pretty much on the right track when it comes to figuring out how and when to start documenting the moments in your pictures.