How Do I Prep For My Wedding?
So, You're big day is coming up! The task is certainly overwhelming to say the least! Here's a couple good links from the Internet to help you get started!
As Photographers, the bulk of our involvement will be on the day of your wedding, here are some tips to get you started, and to help us as we work alongside you to document your day!
As photographers we take ownership of the day and making sure that we're where we're supposed to be during the day (and helping other people get there too if need be). But since it's your day, it's best if you have a plan for times and locations. Below on this page, or in a link provided by email, are some other useful forms for helping you plan and organize: but this is your day, you let it run how you want! Here are some things that we usually do, to give you an idea of where to start!
At most weddings we'll be there as soon as you are, to take pictures of you getting ready and prepped. Its a lot of fun, helps everyone relax around the photographer and helps us get some documentation of all of your planning coming to fruition. Mostly myself, or whichever photographer is with you, will just document things as they are, but they may request you move to a certain place for better light or a better background, or we might close the curtains or change the lighting a little to get a better shot. If any of this seems like its getting in your way, don't be afraid to ask us to stop! We're working for you!
With that in mind however: think carefully about the location of your prep, we'll always work hard to make sure you get the best images possible, but a empty room with fluorescent lights is going to look like an empty room with fluorescent lights: do your best to find a space to conveys the mood you want to set for the day. But don't worry: if the only room you have is pretty plain, we'll still make sure your pictures are excellent and make you happy! For more private moments (Such as the bride putting on her dress) we'll be sure to make an effort that the photographer with you is a female, and for the guys: a male.
Details, Details, Details
While everyone is getting ready either myself or another photographer will be taking pictures of the various details of your wedding outfits: Dresses, ties, shoes, et cetera. If you have time in the morning: have someone get those things together for you. Some of the detail pictures you might want are:
- Special Jewelry
Consider finding or purchasing a decorative hanger for your dress, often the hanger provided by the bridal store does it's job well, but isn't the most photogenic
Running With the Boys
Typically the ladies spend most of the morning getting ready while the guys show up 15 minutes before they're supposed to be there and throw on their clothes, it's pretty unfair. Regardless, we typically will have two photographers with the ladies up until the time we hear from the boys that they are en-route to wherever they're getting dressed. Then one of us will head to them and spend a little time getting pictures of them getting prepped and hanging out. Even just a few minutes can get some fun images of the groom and his groomsmen before the wedding!
At the ceremony: you don't need to be worrying about photography. If there are any special rules for the venue we will have discussed them beforehand, or I will find out myself what they are. You just get married!
Family and Group Formal Pictures
This next section is the part of the day that needs to be the most structured, or it can get very lengthy and lead to a lot of grumpy children! We'll talk through this long before your wedding day, but take some time to think about who needs to be in what picture and when. Usually we try to plan it so large groups and children are done first, that way as many people can head to reception as quickly as possible. Talk to your wedding coordinator about making sure that no one runs off after the ceremony so these pictures can go as smoothly as they can! We'll do our best to make sure that you're not the one having to try to coordinate everyone. This is your day!
Unless you have another preference, we'll typically do group shots of the bridal party during this time as well, so that the bulk of the portrait time can be between you and your spouse! The ideal amount of time for all of this is about 45mins- 1 hour, but that's not always possible. We can work as tightly as we need but depending on the size of your family: at least 15 minutes will probably be needed.
When you're planning the day, and particularly the time for portraits: this is the section we usually try to devote the most time to, unless you have other preferences. This is a time where we'll go of with just you and your new spouse and take some pictures. We'll do some posed shots, but we'll also just let you to walk and talk and have a little break together after a busy day and before a busy reception. Whenever possible it's best to do these at a time of day that is not between 12pm and 3pm, since the sun tends to be harsh and bright during those times. But regardless of when it works out: we'll make sure we find a space that looks nice and is comfortable for you to take a breather.
Usually it's best to plan at least 30 mins for these pictures, if you have the liberty to take more: that is advised; often the bride and groom are pretty tired by this point of the day, and it's nice to have time just to be with each other before you go back to your families and friends.
Reception should just be about having fun, dancing, and eating food! Don't worry too much about the pictures here: we'll coordinate with the DJ or band to make sure we get all the main events and good shots of you and your guests having fun. Usually we'll try to stop for some dinner while everyone else is eating as well (Since most people don't really want pictures of themselves eating anyways). But If you have a different plan: we can coordinate that beforehand!
Hopefully that gives you a good idea of where to start for your wedding! We'll sit down over the next few weeks or months and coordinate all of these things on paper, but this will get things going as you start the process of planning!