I want everyone out there to have great photographs of their big day. Weddings are now the ultimate form of self expression, and they deserve to be planned well and preserved beautifully. Here are my tips on planning your wedding with the photographs in mind.
1. Have a "First Look"
Tradition dictates that brides and grooms can't see each other on the wedding day until the bride actually walks down the aisle. This superstition originated with arranged marriages. If the groom didn't have a chance to see the bride before the wedding, he would be less likely to run in the opposite direction when he got a good look at her face. (eeek!) I'm pretty sure I won't be photographing any arranged marriages any time soon, so lets be real, YOU CAN SEE EACHOTHER.
Lots of couples are opting for a private moment before the ceremony where the bride and groom see each other for the first time. The photographs from these moments are priceless. Ladies, you want to see your man cry tears of love AND have pictures? Do a first look.
2. Let Your Photographer Help With The Timeline.
You need to communicate with your photographer and be willing to adjust your timeline based on one major consideration you may not know much about.
This is what makes or break a photograph. Every decision your photographer makes before, during, and after your wedding will in one way or another be tied to lighting.
When you are thinking: "We'll come out of the church right at 3pm and take family formals on the front steps because everyone will be right there anyways, and the front of the church is so pretty!"
Your photographer is thinking:
"Will the front of the church be in the shade by 3 pm? What does the side of the church look like? Are there gardens nearby as a back up? They will be staring right into the sun if that church faces west " And then they will start checking google earth to check the orientation of the church.
Work with your photographer to coordinate your wedding dreams with the realities of lighting, weather, and time appropriation that need to be planned long before the wedding day. We want to educate our clients to make sure they have the best experience possible. Pick a photographer you trust, because you are going to need to trust them.
3. Ditch The Shot List
Again, I'm going to be honest here when I say TRUST YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER. It is totally fine to have suggestions and a couple family photo arrangements that are really important to you, but creating an epic shot list that describes every single photograph you want makes a photographer wonder "Do they not trust me to do my job?". The best photographs from your wedding are going to be TOTALLY different from the best photographs from so and so's wedding. Just because it's your favorite pose on Pinterest doesn't mean it will be the best pose for you and YOUR wedding. Forced posing looks bad, every time.
Let your wedding unfold and trust your photographer to use their unique skill set to capture it all beautifully.
4. Make a Wedding Hashtag
Your wedding pro isn't the only one that will be taking photographs at your wedding. Create a wedding hashtag so you can view all the photos that your guests are posting in real time! Your wedding photographer will most likely be down to get in on the hashtagging as well so you can have all your photos online categorized under one hashtag. Nifty!
5. Have a Buffer Zone Between Events
Photographers are counting on everything running late, because that's the way things usually happen. You don't have to conform though! Be the exception to the rule!
Make sure to budget enough time for everything you want to happen on your day. Try to be realistic. Your photographer or wedding planner will help you with this. It's important that you feel relaxed enough to enjoy your wedding day, and you can't do that if you are rushing from activity to activity. Plan to have a buffer zone of at least 15-20 minutes or more between events. If you and your guests have to travel from the ceremony location to the reception, make sure to account for possible traffic. Have a bridesmaid in charge of spreading the word in case guests need to take an alternate route to avoid traffic jams.
I hope these tips help you with your wedding planning! If you still haven't decided on a photographer for your wedding yet, check out my gallery under the WEDDINGS tab as well as the ABOUT page, it might just be the best thing you do for your wedding. :)
I'd love to get to know you and talk about your wedding! Drop me a line here or on the contact page!