As a photographer I've seen a lot + learned a lot along the way in this chaotic Wedding world. I want your wedding day to be picturesque, free of problems + lovely in every sense of the word.
Yes, your wedding is going to be beautiful, memorable, and amazing ... but it's also going to be one of the biggest stresses + expenses you have ever come across! For some couples, it can be totally overwhelming to make the deposits and to budget all that's inevitable to make your wedding day perfect.
When you are paying to have your memories documented by a photographer you hand selected - it's because you love their vision, you love their work, and you want them to capture these memories for you, in a way that only they can.
I want to help you steer clear of anything that can jeopardize this important investment you've made... here's a few things to keep in mind:
YOUR FRIENDS + FAMILY NEED TO PUT THEIR DAMN CELL PHONES, iPADS + RIDICULOUS SELFIE STICKS AWAY.
I can't make a lot of promises in this life - but I can make this one. Whether your family and friends realize it or not - they're doing YOU an injustice by getting up to stand in the middle of the aisle to snap an iPhone photo of your first kiss. When things like this happen - there's a good chance your photographer won't get 'the shot.' (Yes, it's a beautiful moment. Yes, they want to remember it right along with you, but the truth is -- there's nothing I hate more than a stampede of phones, iPads + selfie sticks so eager to capture a moment, that they end up causing me to miss it in the process.)
Moral of the story here - seriously consider having an unplugged ceremony!
Another thing I hate to see as your wedding photographer are your friends or family standing beside me - calling your name - to have you look their way! I understand they have the best of intentions (I really, really do!) HOWEVER! All this does is cause everyone to look in different directions - creating a really difficult task for your photographer. We don't want people looking in a million directions, waving, talking. We want beautiful photos for our lovely clients.
RE-THINK YOUR DANCE FLOOR LIGHTING!
We can all appreciate someone who's got moves. If the drinks are flowing, you're bound to witness some good stuff - and I mean, really good stuff. It literally hurts my heart to stand there and capture a bride + her father twirling on the dance floor + seeing rainbow colored blobs of light speckled across their faces. There's not a dry eye in the place (...and rightfully so!) But behind my camera, I'm dying a little inside. There's nothing timeless about it. These lights are a distraction + a sure fire way to ruin a timeless photo.
My piece of advice to you here is:
If you love fun + crazy lighting - consider waiting to turn it on until later in the evening.
TRADITION IS SACRED TO SOME, BUT IT DOESN'T HAVE TO BE.
"Your wedding day is going to fly by." You hear this all the time. Once the chaos has set in, it's hard to break away from it, and enjoy one another. This is exactly why I strongly encourage couples to consider doing a "First Look."
slow. it. down!
This is such a special day, a day that exists only because of two people loving each other so much that they want to get married. Doing a First Look frees you up - you can enjoy the cocktail hour, you can enjoy your friends and family, there's no running around + a whole lot more time to soak up the bliss of being 'just married.'
A First Look allows you to capture the most anticipated, intimate moments that can possibly happen on a wedding day. Couples can exchange their vows, personal gifts, tears, and laughter. Together. On their own time. In a beautiful location without half of their guest list gawking at them. A First Look is a chance to not be on display, to love the one you're with, and to get some AMAZING photos that you normally wouldn't have the chance to get. Doing a First Look is also the perfect way to calm your nerves, set the tone, and really put things into perspective.
Sticking to tradition + not seeing each other before the ceremony is beautiful too! Do not get me wrong. This is totally up to your personal preference!
I say this with a hint of regret:
I wish I had done this + I love when couples do.
THINK OF THE DETAILS AHEAD OF TIME.
A wedding photographer is trained to problem solve + we go to some pretty great lengths... but there are some things we just can't fix !
- A wedding dress on a plastic hanger is a wedding dress on a plastic hanger. It hurts you inside to look at + It can totally be avoided with a little thought ahead of time.
- Nothing better than capturing a bride getting ready for her wedding day alongside her closest friends/family... but a pyramid of pizza boxes, neon bras strewn across the floor, + overnight bags can really muck up a photo, ladies! Clean it up!
- The officiant photo bomb. We've all seen it, people! Consider mentioning this ahead of time so that your "first kiss" belongs to you + your love. Not you, your love + a Priest/Minister/Officiant, etc!
THE BRIDAL PARTY + FAMILY PHOTO'S
You love 'em, that's why they're there! Particularly large families + bridal parties are THE BEST. Your closest friends, your closest family... All here to celebrate YOU.
Here's the thing though... It's a tough job for a photographer to get everyone together, posed, smiling, lookin' good for these photos we know you want! We realize that there's a million other things you'd rather be doing - but this is the reason we're here!
If you know that you have a rowdy group - it might be a good idea to talk with them before hand. Give them the low down - because the quicker we can get the shots - the quicker everyone can get back to enjoying the WEDDING !
These are just some of the major topics I always prep my clients on before their big day. As your wedding photographer - I understand the investment you're making. I take my job seriously + would hate for anything to interfere with your finished product.
Have any other tips or stories you'd like to share? Comment below -- I'd LOVE to hear them.