Wedding Day Tip Sheet
Capturing the details: As the most efficient way to capture the details is with the bride. We would like to get all the details right away before anything else when possible. The best way to do this is to have the Bride and or a bridesmaids, close friend or family member be sure to have the Dress ready to be shot on a nice hanger, with no plastic or cardboard around it. Have all the rings ready for the bride and groom, flowers, shoes for the bride, invitation to the wedding, garter and any other special detail you would like captured, such as maybe the newspaper of that day from where (the town) which you are getting married, jewelry, something blue, your wedding planning guide or journal if you wish.
Please have all your details in one place ready to go upon your photographers’ arrival.
Talking to your Bridal Party: Let your bridal party know how important this day is to you both, how important your photos are to you and that you want everyone to get really into the photos. The more they get into the photos the more fun the photos will be and the more fun you’re having leads to much better amazing and more memorable photos. Send your bridal party a link to your photographer’s website and have them get inspired to see what type of photos they could be a part of. Create a small contest between the bridesmaids and the groomsmen. Have each team come up with 1 to 3 really clever picture or photo ideas and then you the bride and groom can choose your favorite after. Also, make sure that anyone in the bridal party who has a child and will be caring for their child has a solution for someone to watch their child during the photos. Many times small children can interfere with the time schedule allotted for photos. So to sum it up the more you can get your bridal party into the photos the better photos you will get!
Bridal Party Tips: It can be fun for bridal parties to do some fun shot ideas, so think out some props, such as signs everyone can hold or just a sign for the bride and groom. Sunglasses are a popular prop, funny socks, shoes, umbrellas, balloons, superhero undershirts, flasks, and cigars, anything fun or unique that may tell a story or define who you and your bridal party are. Of course no props are needed as well, these are only ideas to help with the creative flow, as to what may fit you both and your bridal party.
Family Photo tips: How to get the most out of your family photos, without taking up to much time. What we like to recommend is have a member of each side of your family’s, or bridal party member/friend who knows who the majority of the people in each side of your family to be in charge of organizing the family photos/portraits. Make sure that these individuals you pic are responsible and will communicate to the majority of family who will be photographed before hand. Also, make a short list of the must have shots, try to eliminate to many family photo options, where you do a photo and then take only one person out then do it again and so on. This time usually during the cocktail hour goes very fast and most couples want to get their fun bridal party shots and couples photos done without making their guest wait any longer than needed. So planning and prep is key, the smart couple will delegate these responsibilities to close friends and family who wish to help out.
Arriving early: as many times bride and grooms run a bit behind, so can your bridal party. It is a smart idea to hold your bachelor/ette parties a couple days to a couple weeks before the main event to avoid a hung over bridal party. Be sure to tell your bridal party to arrive about an hour or so before they actually need to. This is being proactive and thinking ahead. Be sure that their dressed and ready to go about an hour or so before they need to be. Better to have them be waiting around then to have them late and ruining great picture opportunities. Now this goes for the bride and groom as well.
Keeping family and friends under control: Try to have your guests, not take to many photos, family and friends to not 2nd guess your photographers. Please ask your family members and friends with DSLRs (the big cameras with the interchangeable lenses) to have them not shoot and not be seen by your photographers. When photographers see other shooters it can be very distracting and may cause the quality of your photos from your photographers. During the Reception, please let people know and have your DJ/MC announce no flash photography. Your quests even with small cameras may throw enough flash light to trigger your photographer’s flashes to go off, thus stealing from the shots and back lights your photographers are trying to get, again compromising your good photos.
Ceremony site distractions and details: Having your Pastor announce to your guests to keep their feet in the isle, strollers and purses out and away from the ceremony site. You may want to ask anyone arriving with small children to keep their strollers out of the ceremony site. Having a clean isle and seating areas will help to create less distracting photos.
The Bide and Bridal Party’s Walk down the isle: Make sure to have your bridal party walk slow enough down the isle, have each couple stop for a brief moment so the photographers can capture a quick pic. As your photographer will be shooting any and all candid moments during the entrance of the bridal party, parents, some guests and of course the Bride and Groom. Now for the Bride, be sure to walk really slow, take this moment in. Brides tend to speed down the isle, mainly because of nerves. Do your best to slow down, take in the moment, breath. Don’t focus on the camera, only focus on the emotions you’re feeling and staying connected to your Groom.
Exiting your ceremony as Husband and Wife: It’s great when your guest can blow bubbles, shoot poppers, confetti etc. The best thing you can do as a bride and Groom, is to right away do a cheer, hold your arms up, smile big, be excited, again walk slow away together, look at your guests, look at each-other, do a dance if you feel. Whatever defines how you both feel in that moment just go with it! The best photos are when the Bride, Groom and Guests all share the same fun, exciting emotions and us as photographers get to capture them.
Do we see each other before hand? This is a very common question… Should we see each other before the ceremony, or should we wait and see each other for the first time the traditional way? Well there are positives and negatives to both. Personally, we are for whatever way makes you feel the most comfortable. Not even knowing there was an option to see each other ahead of time, also known as: The First Look, or The Reveal, when we got married in October of 2002, we did it the traditional way. Had we known about the first look option, who knows, maybe we would have done ours different. The positives to seeing each other ahead of time are: You get a very special moment with just the two of you to share, it’s more private, intimate and allows you to get out your emotions together and gives the Bride time to re-do her make-up if necessary. Also, seeing each other beforehand allows you to get most of your wedding party, portraits together, sometimes even some family portraits out of the way ahead of time, allowing you to spend less time right after your ceremony taking lots of photographs. This allows you to spend more time with your guests and gets you both to your party quicker. You can still take some extra time after to get some nice sunset shots as well. The Disadvantages basically are: you are not doing it the traditional way… So in the end, you need to way out your options and make a comfortable decision that feels right to the both of you.
Taking your time and creating a relaxed portrait atmosphere: When it comes time for your engagement session and or your husband and wife portrait session, the first thing you need to remember is to relax, let go of any stress and have fun. This is the time to get those amazing memorable images, which you will treasure for a lifetime. It is important to trust your wedding photographers and let them do their job. This special time allows your wedding photographers to find the best available lighting and background to use to help capture those thoughtful, creative and intimate moments between the two of you. Be prepared, to laugh, smile, kiss, be casual and most importantly have fun.
Going crazy with your wedding details: Get inspired!! Do it yourself! Check out Pinterest! Couples these days are taking their wedding into their own hands, meaning they are more hands on and crafty than ever before. The more details you have and the more you put into your details, meaning, party favors, your decor, signs, artwork, pictures and picture boards, candles, unique crafts, card boxes, flowers, your desert stand, cake, etc. the better your photos are and more detail photos of your day, you will receive! As professional wedding photographers, it is so fun to capture amazing shots of all you put into your wedding day! We love to find unique ways and perspectives to show off all the extra hard work you put into your day, so you can remember and cherish all that it meant to you!
Speeches: Tell your Best Man, Made of Honor and anyone else who is going to give a speech to stand with in 5 to 7 feet of you while giving their speech. It would be a great idea to talk with your DJ/Emcee about this ahead of time to make sure they organize this the right way.
Cutting of the Cake: Ok, so when it’s time for the cutting of the cake, make sure that you give your photographers a min. or two to get set up and ready before you just go for it. Your photographers can help guide you on the spot as the best way for the two of you to cut the cake. This includes where you stand, how you both stand together, how you both hold the knife together and how you both feed each other. Be prepared to feed each other at least two pieces. Be sure to only be into each other and do don’t look toward the cameras. Smile, laugh, kiss even with a little cake on your face is always fun.
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