How to get the most out of your wedding photography. A little planning goes a long way
So the date has been set and you need to find a photographer. You of course want it all captured beautifully, the fun, tears and of course the love. We know that it must be difficult looking for that one photographer that leaps out at you and you know immediately that this is exactly what you are looking for. Sometimes it’s literally better to go through many websites to decide what you don’t want, to establish what you do want. Here are some hints and tips to help narrow them down and also what to expect from us.
Always look for good reliable testimonials. We always show a picture along with the testimonials so that you can see they are genuine as you will find the shoot or wedding on our blog. Make sure your wedding photographer is established and has shot many weddings. I was a second photographer when learning my trade to gain experience before signing up any of my own clients. Decide if you want an album. It is often better to negotiate an album along with your package. We always shoot as if you are having an album and its okay to come back to us at a later date if money is tight at the time of the wedding. There is nothing like a gorgeous wedding album which will become an heirloom. Set your budget and decide if you want a formal more classic wedding or if you might prefer a field, some tents and something much more relaxed. We shoot both of these styles and love them equally. Whatever you decide it is your day and do what is right for you.
How much coverage
Being storytellers we like to cover the whole day from getting ready to the first dance and evening party but will do shorter weddings. Having a photographer there to capture the preparations completes the set of images and there are many lovely moments to capture at this time. You can often see the anticipation and excitement on the faces and I don’t know of anyone who has regretted having us there. We are considerate and know when to leave you to have some space and will often go off and photograph details and pop back and forth. A good two hours is better in the morning, especially if you are getting ready at two different addresses. As a photographer it is a good time to get to know the main wedding party and put everyone at ease. These morning shots are always going to be something lovely to show your guests who naturally would not have seen these special moments.
The ceremony and congratulations after
You can usually plan on a couple of hours for the ceremony from the arrival, the marriage and the confetti and congratulations after, especially a church wedding. Doug and I always shoot from two angles during the ceremony. We separate to get as much of the well wishing as possible. If a venue bans confetti consider bubbles.
The Group Shots
These are best done after the hugs and congratulations. We usually ask our clients to limit them to around six to eight. They take longer than you can imagine. Usually, it’s the fetching of guests for the shot rather than taking the shots that eat into time out of your day. We can carry out a big group shot of everyone if we can get up high so that the photo will show everyones faces. We will discuss with you if you want the shots to look more formal or more relaxed. We always ask you to appoint someone to gather the guests and family for the group shots and usually this is the best man or chief bridesmaid.
Personal shots of the two of you
We ask for twenty minutes of your time and try to carry them out before the reception. Sometimes the weather dictates a few now and a few later if it looks to improve. This is the only time, other than the group shots you will be aware of us and a great time for you to catch your breath and have some moments together. Other than that we aim to capture everything naturally as it unfolds. We shoot either inside or outside depending on the weather. We always carry umbrellas just in case but are happy on a rainy day to also shoot inside.
This is usually a couple of hours. We photograph you coming in to your reception and then will leave for an hour to take a break. Your guests will not relish photographers capturing them eating and will enjoy their food a lot more without cameras pointing at them. This is our only proper break and is time for us also to rest and refresh for the rest of the day. We also get hungry and will take some time out to eat as well. We keep an eye out and always return for the speeches. Sometimes speeches are before the meal especially if the people giving the speech are nervous. This means they can get it over with and enjoy their meal.
The evening party and first dance
Our advice for this is as follows…. Since TV’s strictly, couples are often pressured to have an elaborate practiced dance to surprise their guests. They may have seen this at other weddings. Unless you are really up for this, it is okay just to have a regular slow dance. We can leave after the first dance or stay for more party shots. This is usually when even the most camera shy people decide to shine and we can get creative in camera with the evening lighting.
The in between
So you have a rough structure and timeline for the day. In between all of this there are so many more photo opportunities for us to capture. The cake cutting, the getting in and out of wedding cars and inside the car. Your guests and you captured naturally laughing and interacting. Crazy moments and lots of love and hugs. We love the in-between moments.