Planning your perfect day can be overwhelming. It is in our best interest to provide you guidance from photographer’s perspective so you will get amazing photographs. This wedding guide should give you simple tips and guidelines that will assure nothing but perfection to smallest detail when you will look at your day through the story of photographs.
Pick a location that is spacious, full of light and reflects your aesthetics. Hotel rooms are often small and dark. Remember, you will spend the entire morning in the area and a lot will be happening at the same time (hair, makeup, party). Renting an Airbnb or at least an entire suite is a good option to consider.
This is true for the number of people entering the area as well as the clutter. Clean up the space and get rid of unnecessary objects. It is still an active place of preparation, but it does not have to look like a trash site. Keep it organized and tidy, get rid of trash, hang extra clothes in closets so we have more time to work with you and bridesmaids rather than cleaning the room for the shoot.
A little background music and some champagne are a must, as is a sense of humor to keep any stress out of the room. If you can pick the brightest place with a lot of window light. Natural light looks spectacular compared to artificial lamps. Your hair and makeup artist will appreciate the choice too.
Even though their preparation routine is barely as complex as yours give the groom and groomsmen some space and nice room as well. It is advised not be fully dressed for photography. It is best if we capture the process if the groom is going to shave in the morning why not to start with that when the photographer arrives.
Since it is a lot happening in both rooms and we are always entering the land of unexplored each time we would like to make sure that we captured every single detail what is precious to you. To help us please gather the pieces in one spot so we don’t have to hunt them down. Do you have a special hanger for your dress? Nice box for your rings, the day on stationary as well as your invitations? Maybe you have a letter from your future spouse, a gift from grandma that was given to you or just accessories you will wear (shoes, jewelry, a garter for the bride; watch, cufflinks, boutonnieres for the groom).
It is becoming a trend that you and your partner exchange love letters in the morning of your wedding day, telling each other how much you love him/her and how thankful you are for your partner in your life. If you decide to do so and would like to read the letter in front of your bridesmaids/groomsmen/parents or privately we would love to be present. We will not interfere at all, rather document the moment, but it provides the perfect storyline of your day in the album. You do not have to read it loud, it is perfectly fine to keep it to yourself, just make sure you have a box of tissues nearby.
First look is the moment when groom see his bride for the first time and and there are many benefits you should consider. Whether you choose to include it in your day or not, here are some tips that will make it unforgettable.
The main purpose of first look is to see each other for the first time as bride and groom. It is one of the most emotional and exciting moments of your day. It does not have to be fancy or grand staged. It is about you and only you at that moment before the official part of the day starts. Pick a location that is private away from crowds.
Having first look beforehand not only helps you relax more throughout the day where everyone is vying for your attention, but it also gives you peace of mind in your timeline. Since we photograph you as a couple during first look, you can focus more on your family and formals after the ceremony. There is no doubt that seeing the bride walking gloriously down the aisle will bring lots of emotions, having the private moment before the ceremony helps to keep pressure off in a busy day and involve you in a very romantic, timeless and precious moment you share together. It adds another memorable moment to your day.
Groom is not the only person excited to see the bride in the beautiful wedding gown. Father of a bride is giving away his little sweet girl and he is equally excited to share a moment with her before they will walk to the altar together. It is another wedding day moment that will be in memories for ever.
Family and bridal party portraits are typically done after the ceremony. These tips help you keep it short and enjoyable for everybody.
Although most of the time the portraits are done after the ceremony, since you had first look you may as well consider the formals to be scheduled before the ceremony. This makes easy for everybody to enjoy the cocktail hour and we do not have to keep everybody at a place for long. Also since the receiving line takes place whether you plan it or not, people would like to congratulate and spend a minute with the newly wedded couple.
We highly recommend creating a list of groups/people you definitely don’t want to forget. Although many are obvious, sometimes happens that a relative you haven’t seen for ages attends this special day and by accident leaves the ceremony location before we even have a chance to start photographs. It is a good idea to assign a bridesmaid, groomsmen or family member the task of gathering the family and since we have a list it speeds up the process, stress-free.
Having very long list takes away from your time being around friends and family and it also takes away from the time capturing the candid moments since we focus on formal portraits. It is best to prioritize and have few groups (8-9) so that we can keep it under 30min and everybody can enjoy the time mingling around. It is totally up to your preference, but it is good to keep in mind, that if you want a photograph with every single guest at the wedding, that may eat up an entire cocktail hour and time we could use to capture candids and details.
Especially for the outdoor ceremony on a bright day in the middle of summer. Although the ceremony lasts under 1/2 hour standing on the direct sun will make you feel uncomfortable. More so, if the sun is in your face and you will have all photographs squinting. It is a good advise to position the ceremony so that the sun is behind officiant. It provides more even lighting and you do not have bright light source directly in your face. Picking a location under the tree or building an arch is a huge help for you and for the photographer as well to have even lighting. For the indoor ceremony, the best light is natural. If you can position a huge window behind officiant it will give us plenty of light for photography. Sometimes intimate lighting or poorly lit church is chosen for the ceremony and we may need to introduce flashlight if necessary to achieve the desired look, which is not as pleasant as the well-lit environment.
Since the ceremony is one of the most important parts of your day, we will be capturing it from every possible angle. Having a microphone on large stand interfering with you is not the most desired look on your photographs. Ask officiant to use a handheld microphone instead or lapel microphones that videographers use.
This is a phenomenon of the smartphone era when everybody wants to snap a photo of a bride across the room with a phone or small camera and it can be the most disturbing element for you and your guests. An unplugged ceremony means you do not allow your guests to take photographs and let them enjoy the moment with you rather than fussing over cell phones and flashes. It keeps the aisle clear when the bride is walking down the aisle for groom and everybody to appreciate the spectacular view. You can have your officiant do a quick announcement to let guests know. Or have a sign at the entrance to the ceremony area.
We recommend planning the time slots for couple portraits throughout the day. Please allow us three time slots for your portraits to be captured, if possible. We will repay with some beautiful amazing photographs that will belong to your favorites from the day.
“First look” is the great way to have the genuine reactions captured when you first time see each other. We need about 15min of your time before the ceremony to accomplish it without rush.
After you walk down the aisle, it is one of the happiest moment of the entire day. There is a lot of energy and joy in moments and we love to capture some photographs of you before or after receiving line.
This is our favorite part of the day and most couples tell us they really appreciated it and photographs they share the most are from this time of day. We will take ideally 15min a sneak you out of the reception after the long day to take some romantic photographs. The time before sunset is providing the best lighting conditions. If you allow us two small slots we will make sure you get some creative “last photo of the day” using the flash and natural elements.
Depending on the reception location there may or may not be enough lighting already provided. If you want to achieve the romantic mood use the patio string lights that can be found in many sizes and lengths, great for indoor/outdoor use. Just remember, that the light is very soft and moody, almost as low as candle lights so you want enough for the entire area.
DJ tend to have colorful very random lighting to enhance the party mood of your reception. And it is perfect to get the dance floor going entire night. However, there are two occasions when less is more and having just the moody lighting we talked about is the best option. During your first dance and dance with parents. If there is not enough natural light we will use flash and create some minimalist yet powerful photographs we just ask to turn off the disco style lights during this time.