This year, we are going to toss in several posts that are not from a recent wedding, engagement session, or any other photo shoot. These posts are going to be about the wedding industry, local vendors, venues, photography tips and really anything else we think would be helpful to couples planning their wedding. On top of providing a great wedding photography experience, we want to help couples get the most out of their wedding day. Our first post is going to kick off with some tips that we have compiled over the years. These wedding photography tips apply 100% of the time, so whether you are in the planning stage, or your wedding is this weekend- remembering these tips will help you out a lot.
When we meet with couples to talk about their upcoming wedding, specifically, their wedding photography, we give them a list of 12 tips that we recommend they check out while they are in the planning stage of their wedding. We will list several of our favorite.
1. Have an engagement session. And make sure it is with the photographer that you will be using for your wedding. This is one of the only tips you can’t apply a week before your wedding, but it is also one of the most important. Having an engagement session with your wedding photographer will help you know what to expect for your wedding. It will also help you to get rid of any jitters you may have with your picture being taken. On your wedding day, you are going to have one or more photographers following you around and capturing moments throughout the day- It is better to get comfortable with the camera (and your photographer) months in advance. Having an engagement session will also help you figure out what you like and what you don’t. Some poses may not be “you”, so figuring that out before your wedding is key for time management on your big day. There are many other benefits of having an engagement session with your wedding photographer, but on to the next tip!
2. Create a timeline for your day. Creating a timeline is something a lot of couples already do. It is a great way to communicate to family, friends, and vendors about certain expectations for the day. By having a basic timeline, you are preventing your vendors from “winging it”. Most, if not all, vendors will ask for this at some point, so plan as early as you can. Having a master timeline with names, roles, and phone numbers is ideal. You do not want to have to play” 20 questions” all day with people not in the loop. If you need help making a timeline for your wedding day, ask your photographer or a friend who recently got married. One caveat- Your timeline will serve as a guide, but don’t worry if your day deviates a bit.
3. Book entire day coverage. Booking entire day coverage enables you to capture the whole day- Plain and simple. If you have limited hourly coverage, you will have to face the conundrum of deciding what part of the day gets cut. Will it be the first part of the day when your bridal party is getting ready and having a good time? Or will it be part of the reception when everyone is relaxed, dancing and enjoying the newlywed couple? Don’t be faced with having to make that choice. Another perk of you photographer getting there earlier in the day is to make sure everyone gets accustomed to their picture being taken. This may be the first time they have ever had someone professionally taking their picture, so giving them a buffer can go a long way.
4. Use your hands. You photographer will likely go over this with you as well, but nothing sticks out more in a picture than lost hands. When it comes time to do your couple shots, don’t be afraid to put your hands on eachother. Be natural. Pretend the photographer isn’t there- its just you and your love. Make eachother laugh a bit. Tease eachother. Relax. If something doesn’t feel right- change it up. There really is no right or wrong when it comes to you being natural, so don’t worry, have fun. Where your hands are though can add intrigue and drama to a picture like nothing else. This tip ties back in with the first tip- Having an engagement session with your photographer. It is a great time to practice.
5. Have an emergency kit. It’s your wedding day. You just got your dress on. Everything is perfect. And then the flower girl trips and tears her dress. Emergency kit to the rescue. Someone gets a massive headache. Emergency kit to the rescue. You get a drop of coffee on your dress. Emergency kit to the rescue. You get the point. This is not Hollywood- its real life- mistakes happen. An emergency kit can be your best friend when you need it. There are some great resources online if you are looking for ideas. The Knot has a list HERE .
6. Hire vendors you are comfortable with. I would fail you greatly if it didn’t recommend having a wedding planner. They plan wedding around the clock, so they know what works and what doesn’t- which takes a lot of stress off of you. They can help you make decisions on decorations, invitations, budget, other quality vendors, and much more. If you are considering hiring a wedding planner, check out Lovely Events and Occasions, Stylish Occasions, or Celebrations. When it comes to hiring vendors for your wedding day, go with your gut. Search for reviews from past clients to hear what they have to say. You are trusting your wedding day to these vendors so ask questions and do not be afraid to take your time to get it right.
Thank you for taking the time to read these tips. We hope that they were helpful to you. If you would like to see the entire list we give couples or would like more information about Nathan Desch Photography, contact us.