As a wedding photographer, I wholeheartedly believe that photography is one of the most important parts of your wedding day. Once your wedding day has come and gone you are left with precious memories, the love between the two of you, and your wedding photos.
My advice is always to hire the best wedding photographer you can afford and to find someone who really "gets" the two of you and the vision you have for your wedding day.
Having the right photographer makes a tremendous difference, but there are a few things you can do yourself to ensure you have stunning photos that capture the magic of your special day.
In the world of photography light is everything! The best lighting always comes about 1 hour before the sun sets (commonly referred to as golden hour). This is when you are able to capture that gorgeous golden light that is flattering to everyone and will make your photos stand out.
When you begin planning your wedding day, be sure to check the time of sunset and plan your ceremony start time accordingly. You really want that last hour of golden light to be reserved for portraits.
For example, If I was planning on having a 30 minute ceremony, and the sun is scheduled to set at 7:00pm....I would start the ceremony at 5:15pm. If all goes according to plan, the ceremony would be over by 5:45pm and would allow a few minutes for you to gather with your wedding party for hugs before we begin taking photos.
Emily + Blake timed their ceremony out perfectly! Their photos are filled with gorgeous golden light!
Most wedding receptions tend to take place at night, which can lead to some dark, less dynamic photos. The best way to make your reception photos pop is by lighting the reception space.
If it's in your budget having the space professionally lit is always a plus. Otherwise go crazy with twinkle lights! Having tons of twinkle lights adds so much dimension. Also it's always a good idea to ask the DJ or band you hire if they can bring some additional lighting with them as well!
The biggest gift you can give your wedding photographer and yourself is TIME. On a wedding day time moves at super speed, and you need to prepare for that. If you expect for something to take 30 minutes...give yourself 45. I promise, you will greatly prefer to be ahead of schedule than behind schedule.
Sticking to your timeline and allowing plenty of time for photos will make a tremendous difference in the amount of photos you receive and the quality of the photos. Photography is art, and art takes time.
When your hair + makeup run 30 minutes over, that takes away from the time that has been set aside for photos. Always leave yourself a buffer! It will make a tremendous difference, I promise!
Your flowers will be in about 70% of your wedding photos. They will be in your bridesmaid photos, ceremony photos, detail shots, bridal portraits, and couples photos. Having the right florals can make a significant difference in the overall feel and tone of the day. Make sure you choose the right color palette but most importantly the right florist! Every florist has a unique style, so make sure you look at lots of example work and choose someone who understands the overall aesthetic of your wedding day.
It's 2016 and people have gone cell phone CRAZY!! We are all about selfies and cell phone pics, but there is a time and a place....and that place is not as the bride is walking down the aisle.
Countless ceremony photos have been diminished by guests using cell phones and ipads to snap photos.
A great way to prevent this is by placing a cute calligraphy sign at the entrance of the ceremony saying "Welcome to our unplugged wedding. We invite you to be fully present with us during our ceremony. Please turn off your cell phones. We will have plenty of photos to share!". I'd also suggest having the officiant reiterate that before the ceremony begins.