It is so important to you that your day go just right and we are going to try our best to make that happen. It is no secret that planning a wedding is already stressful enough so as your photographer I really want to walk you through some tips to help things go smoothly while capturing every moment.
Getting ready can be such a beautiful time to get those genuine pre-wedding shots. But sometimes the energy is ruined by the aesthetic. A cluttered, messy, dark room takes away from the genuine moments happening and the beauty of the morning. Here are some things to keep in mind:
1.Clutter: I know there is a lot going on, but try to keep clutter hidden and to a minimum. Keep bags, suitcases, laundry, etc in a different room, or the closet. I often do a short sweep when I arrive to clean up the area anyways!
2.Light: Window light is my favorite light. If possible, get ready in a room with lots of window light, where we won’t need to use lamps or artificial light. Having an orange tungsten light mixed in with the window is not ideal for color. So I always prefer to turn all lights off and rely only on window light whenever possible!
3.Hair/Makeup: If you will have a h/mu artist, they will need as much light as possible. I suggest doing your h/mu next to the window, for them and for me!
4.Don’t forget about the groom! Sometimes the groom gets left with the dark tiny room. He is just as important, and his photos will look way better in a well lit room
A first look shoot is when the bride and groom see each other for the first time in a more private setting before the walk down the aisle. It doesn’t have to be a big staged moment. It can be simple, genuine and intimate.
I recommend doing a first look for three reasons:
1. It calms the nerves. There is nothing that relaxes nervous brides and grooms more than finally seeing each other and enjoying a few moments alone before the official events begin.
2. It gives you time to take it all in. You can share what you’re feeling, you can hug, you can actually say “wow you look incredible in that dress”– all things you can’t do when you’re at the front of the aisle with everyone watching.
3. It makes the timeline easier to work with. If you can see each other before the ceremony, we can do all family portraits and bridal party photos before too. Your family can go enjoy the cocktail hour right after the ceremony, and we can get to couple portraits right away. Which means you miss less of your cocktail hour too!
If you’ve always dreamed of the walk down the aisle as the first glimpse of each other, then we’ll do it that way. It’s your day!”
Because this can be a tiresome task for a lot of guests and family members, I recommend keeping this list short and as simple as possible. Some families are bigger than others but that is ok. As long as we are prepared to have at least 20 minutes for these portraits we will be able to get through them all. Also, make your list of group portrait combinations before the actual day and hand it over to someone trustworthy. This person will be an assistant and call over everyone by name. This always works in helping create smooth transitions when everyone is trying to get to the party.
I recommend two portrait time slots for portraits of just you two together: right after the ceremony for 30 minutes , and at sunset for about 20 minutes.
Why after the ceremony? Because the pressure is off, and you’re ecstatic, giddy, in love, and ready to party. I’ve gotten some of the best, most genuine joyful moments at this time.
Why before sunset? Because its when we get the best light. At sunset we’ll get great golden light. And right after the sun disappears we’ll get some of the best moody light in which I love to shoot.
If your ceremony is later in the day, close to sunset, we will just merge these two into one, for about 30-40 min total.
The most important thing to ensure we get great photos is trust. If you trust me to create the photos you’ll love, I’ll be able to do my thing and guide and direct you well. It’s all about collaboration and trust!”
Ceremonies in nature are my favorite: the setting, the light, and the freedom for me to shoot all around. For outdoor ceremonies, light and sun are super important factors in the photos. Spotty sun light and harsh uneven light are not ideal. So if you’re having your ceremony close to midday, try to always backlight yourselves. This means, try to set up the ceremony so that the sun is behind your officiant, so you two are backlit, evenly,
You could also plan your ceremony later in the day, so the light is nicer, closer to sunset. Just be sure to leave enough time for any delays, as well as couple portraits around sunset.
As you know, capturing the mood of your event is very important to me. This is why I don’t use flash for anything other than party/dance floor time. For a romantic mood, market lights and candles are great, and if you use enough, they provide great light for photos. Just try to stay away from using only candles, or super dim lighting, which will make focusing trickier for me. If you’re unsure about your setup, just ask me and I’ll help!
DJ Lights: While colored/flashy lights that your DJ provides might be fun for party time, they can destroy the romantic mood of your first dance and special dances. If you are having colorful lights, I ask that they be turned off for special dances. For party time, go crazy with them if you want!
A FEW MORE TIPS
Be sure to EAT AND BREATHE! You will be so busy and consumed with everything that is happening, you will forget to take a minute to breathe and eat. So do both in intervals😊 You don’t want the stress to show in your photos.
Have your bouquet, shoes, jewelry, invitations, rings or anything else you would like me to photograph handy. I will be photographing those first before anything else.
Have a selection of photos from our mood board picked out. This gives us a feel of what you like and what your expectations of style are. I can help you through the process of creating a mood board. I do not recommend picking particular poses from Pinterest as it all depends on the location and creative style that the day has for us. Please trust that I will create poses that are best suited with the environment we are in and that best fit the two of you. However, if there is one particular pose that is a must have then we will make it happen. I will do my best to accommodate your requests but keep in mind , this is a very busy day for us all and in trying to make one request happen, it could in fact slow the process down. Simple goes a long way! We will then be able to create works of art that you can hang on your wall and look at for years to come.
I hope you have found these tips useful when planning your big day. If you need anything else please do not hesitate to ask. I am always there to help make this the most special day of your life.
See you on the other side of the lens 😊