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Wedding Photography - Tips for the Bride and Groom

Updated on September 7, 2014

Wedding Planning

When you are planning your wedding there are many things that you have to consider. Everything from location to dress to food options. Something that you will want to take some time considering is your photographer. It's important to capture your day your way and therefore it will take some planning. Hiring a photographer isn't the end of the line when it comes to this important aspect of your day. The idea of the photographer saying, "Don't worry about a thing." may seem all fine and dandy, however there are a few things you can get your wedding party ready for to make the day go smoother.

Can You Tell Who Has Been Drinking?

unediting photo
unediting photo | Source

Starting the Party to Early

I understand that a wedding is a celebration. Most celebrations involve a certain about of inebriation, that is accepted practice. As much fun as it might be to see the best man deliver a slightly drunk, tear filled speech about how you two are perfect for each other, it can cause a nightmare for your photographer.

Many wedding start out with a drink while getting ready, drinks on the way to the photo shoot locations, drinks before dinner, drinks at dinner and pretty much drinks all day. Something you need to pay attention to is how many drinks your wedding party, or anyone else you want portraits of, has had. One drink to relax while getting ready will likely not affect your end results. Drunk people are hard to pose in photos, they don't want to listen and think everything is a joke.

Later in the evening when people are having fun, candid photos of your drunk buddies are okay. However for the really posed beautiful photos that you have researched and want, I would lay off the booze in the early day.


Not Your Ideal Flower Girl Photo

This is what kids do when you stop paying attention. Five min later that white dress was covered in dirt. (Gotta love how adorable she was though.)
This is what kids do when you stop paying attention. Five min later that white dress was covered in dirt. (Gotta love how adorable she was though.) | Source

Will There Be Small Children in Your Photos

A wonderful tradition is having young family members, whether they are your own children or not, in the wedding party as ring bearers or flower girls. At my husband and I's wedding our then 4 year old daughter and my then 5 year old brother filled in these jobs nicely. We didn't have a fancy photographer for the event so I never really put much though into whether they would sit still and behave.

If you are having a proper wedding, with a photographer and you want to have pictures of the precious little ones in your wedding party please remember that time is of the essence. I advise taking photos with them as soon as possible especially if they are very young. Weddings are not typical days, there is a lot of hustle and bustle. Children tend to eat more sugar and junk food than is usual, sleep less and generally get caught up in all the excitement.

Also ensure that there is someone one to take over care of the children for you, especially if they are yours. It is very difficult to get amazing photos of mommy and daddy while they are trying to take care of a cranky toddler. This may sound a bit harsh, I have a child of my own and love kids, but if you have high expectations for your day I highly suggest you take this advice.

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Research and Know What You Want

Your photographer is a professional, they have likely shot a wedding before and have a good idea of the types of poses you would like. With time they will also get to know you and understand your style and what will be more natural for you. In saying that I would also like you to keep in mind that there will be some planning on your part to make the shoot successful in your eyes and not just the artists.

Take some time to go on the internet and pick out poses for the wedding party, the bride and groom, the parents etc. I few ways to track your thoughts and ideas are to; create pinterest board, email ideas directly to your photographer or post them on Facebook. Whichever way you choose, make sure that your photographer is well informed with poses you want, they can then extrapolate on your ideas and add in more based on their experience and research.

This is a very important step to a successful wedding shot and shot not be overlooked. Creating a shot on the spot and take extra time away from an otherwise packed day, and cause you to be late for the next item on your to do list.

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Make Sure You Have a Shooting Schedule

As mentioned above it is important to keep everything flowing on your wedding day. It's a day packed tight with event and things that you have to do so having a schedule made up and providing it to your photographer is key.

What time will the bride start getting ready? Is it at a home or a salon? Is there travel between locations involved? Is the groom getting ready close by? What will the travel to the church be like? Ceremony time? How long do you have for a photo session before you have to be at the reception location? How many locations are there for the photo session? What time is the cake cutting at? What time is the garter / bouquet toss at? Is someone you need photos with leaving early?

This is all crucial information for your photographer to have. Take time to get this information to them as soon as you have a schedule available. Not only will this ensure you get the shots you want, but your photographer will also help to keep you on time throughout the day.

How far in advance did you book your wedding photographer?

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Get Your Photographer Booked

There are a few advantages to booking your photographer as soon as you have set a date for your wedding.

First of all you will ensure that you get a photographer who is available for you wedding date and lock them in. Wedding photographers can book over a year in advance and you have to remember that more the people in your area the faster they will book.

Secondly some photographer offer discounted rates for booking in advance and paying your deposit. these can range from saving money on your final bill to adding in free engagement photos. Weddings are expensive and freebies are always a good way to lighten the load a little.

Next the sooner you book, the more time you have to talk to your photographer. This could be a huge difference in the way your day is captured.

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In Closing

I hope that the information I have provided you will be helpful as you find your photographer for you special day. It is important to find someone who will take your ideas and thoughts into consideration, and not just treat you like someone else on the processing line. It's okay to talk to more that one photographer and get a feel for them before making your decision. Price can play an important roll in your final choice, but don't let it be the only factor to play a roll. Make certain that you and your photographer are a good fit ensuring your day will be remembered exactly they way you experienced it.

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