These are 5 tips for great wedding photos that I’ve shared with countless brides in the last few years of my wedding photography journey. A lot of people put countless time and money towards their wedding day to make sure it runs as smooth as possible. Visit my website and follow my blog for more wedding tips! If there’s one thing I stress the the most, it’s that preparation is key.
1.) Plan your formals list.
Usually after the ceremony couples like to have formal photos with the bridal party and family members. Something that I share with each bride is to have list of combinations, along with the names of the people in each combinations. This helps the photographer or planner to direct everyone by name. This takes out any confusion, and makes formals go by quickly so that everyone can make their way to the reception.
2.) Have a mock exit.
A lot of couples like to have photos of them exiting the reception while everyone is seeing them out, usually with sparklers or confetti. The problem is that towards the end of some weddings, the crowd starts to thin out and not everyone gets to experience the grand exit together. That’s why I recommend having a mock exit, which means we go through the whole motion of an actual exit, while the crowd is still full, and as soon as you’re done you walk straight back into the reception area and party all night.
3.) Keep the sun in mind.
This is a pretty simple tip, I know it can be a big deal to have your ceremony during sunset. But I usually recommend people start their ceremony at least 1 and a half hours before sunset, that way we have enough sunlight to take photos outside, with possibly finishing taking photos as the sun sets.
4.) Have a first look.
For some people, seeing each other before the ceremony is not negotiable, which I understand. But there are plenty of advantages in having a first look. For example, you take all of your couples, bridal party, and formals before the ceremony, that way you can go straight into your reception without skipping a beat. Another advantage is that because you’re going to be ready 1 to 2 hours before your ceremony, for the first look, you’re not having to stress about being late to the precessional.
5.) Make time.
This is probably the most import tip in today’s list. Even though taking a photo only requires a fracture of a second, capturing great photos with great backgrounds and artistic intention, TAKES TIME. Be sure you’re setting aside enough time for each part of the day that you’d like to be captured. As a veteran wedding photographer, I can capture competent couples photos in a 10 minute time slot. But give me 45 minutes to an hour and we can make magic.