Wedding photography tips and planning a stress-free day

As you will see from our photography style our approach on the day of your wedding is non-instrusive except where we feel some direction it is required. In short, we are not going to be little miss bossy on the day. However there are some things that we’d like to share with you to ensure you get the best out of your photos. We’ve been photographing weddings for some time now and we’ve seen it all and we’ve got a pretty good idea of what works, and what doesn’t.

The purpose of this is so every thing runs smoothly and is stress-free.  Shooting a wedding is a mentally and a physically demanding job, so there are things that can be controlled, so we can perform our best and take awesome shots. More importantly a stress-free day allows you to focus on the things that are most important and that is to enjoy yourself and spending time with your loved ones.

Getting ready

wedding photography tips - hanging up a dress in a well lit room
Hang your dress up in a nice room with lots of natural light

 

  • Try and choose a house/hotel room which lots of natural light and is quite spacious.
  • Have your dress, jewellery, shoes, perfume etc. all the items you want photos of kept together in one spot so when we arrive we can easily get access to them.
  • Wherever you decide to get ready, try your best to keep it clean. ie. free of clothes laying around, dirty dishes, water bottles etc.
  • Buy yourself and your bridesmaids some nice silky dressing gowns for when you’re getting ready – they will look great in your photos and it’s a nice gift too.

 

Wedding Photographers Melbourne - Silky robes
Buy yourself and your bridesmaids some nice silk robes – a great gift idea too!

 

  • If you have a long fringe, speak to your hairdresser about trying to keep that long fringe off your face. Not only will it annoy you all day with the flicking of it but it makes it hard to get a nice photo of your beautiful face. If it’s a windy day, try and wear your hair up.
  • Have food available at your getting ready location.
  • Be daring, be different, wear some different shoes to add that bit of extra pop. Different coloured shoes or textured shoes are great. They look really cute in photos. An idea for the guys to get them some really groovy socks.
  • Our parents can be pretty stressed on the day, probably more so than you. We’ve witnessed many times that when parents become stressed they fuss and that fussing can start to make everyone else stressed. So our advise is give them one job to focus on. Even if it’s just to help you get ready. That way they won’t be running around trying to do 100 things at once.

 

Give your parents one job to do.

 

  • Prepare an emergency bridal kit with bobby pins, deodorant, pain killers, band aids etc.
  • Allow 50% more time for hair and makeup to be completed.
  • Avoid having a fake tan done, you will look orange.
  • Leave plenty of time to get dressed.
  • Try and be ready 30 minutes before your leaving time so we can quickly do some photos with the family, bridesmaids/groomsmen, bride/groom before you leave.  This is also to ensure that there isn’t a mad rush at the end.
  • If your husband/wife to be has given you a gift, try and wait until we’ve arrived so we can get some great shots of you opening it.

 

Wedding Photography Tips , if you have a gift to open, wait until the photographer has arrived to open it
Opening up your gift – wait till your photographer is there so we can capture it.

Ceremony

  • When you are getting out of the car, walking down the aisle, getting introduced at the reception remember to keep your head up. We know it can be overwhelming when entering a room with all eyes on you and our first instinct is to want to look down, but we don’t want photos of the top of your head. Remember these are special moments, soak them up – don’t be shy.
  • Our lives are today are taken over by iPhones and iPads. Consider asking your guests not to take photos when you are walking down the aisle and throughout the ceremony (in particular during the vows). They need to see you and enjoy the ceremony, not view the ceremony through the back of a camera.  If this is of interest to you, let us know and we will put things in place to make this happen.
  • Having a winter wedding? Have an earlier ceremony. You’ll have more daylight and more time to party.
  • Don’t walk too fast down the aisle , leave plenty of space between each of your bridesmaids so we can get a clear shot of each of you. The same when you are walking back down the aisle after the ceremony.

 

 

When making an entrance, remember to keep your head up and don’t walk too fast

 

  • Find out what the rules for photographs are at the ceremony location. All venues are different, some restricting the location of photographs and even the times in which they are permitted.
  • Nerves play a huge part in this, but try and refrain from fidgeting during the ceremony. When we say fidgeting we mean playing with your hair, playing with your dress etc. Not only is it distracting but it can be difficult to get good photos. So just stay still and enjoy what is happening around you. This goes for the bridal party too.
  • If you’re having an outdoor ceremony, try and avoid being out in the full blazing sun if possible. If you can, hold the ceremony under a nice shaded tree, but be careful of that dappled light.

 

Portraits, Family photos and reception

  • Light – this is a main priority, then location. If a great location and pretty background is in full sunlight or the lighting is really dull then we’re likely not to use it . Photographing in full sunlight can cause harsh shadows and squinting. If it is a sunny day we’re more than likely to photograph you in the shade. It will look a zillion times better.
  • Don’t stress about rain. Photos in the rain can actually be quite nice. Not in the pouring rain but in light rain, it’s still doable and we have umbrellas.

 

Photos in the rain can be quite beautiful

 

  • The best time to have your portraits done is  1 hour before sunset. Check out the following site for sunset times. (www.timeanddate.com). In reality sometimes this doesn’t work for all weddings, especially during the summer months when the sun sets later and and your reception is in full-swing. If we see a killer sunset and am able to find an awesome spot to take advantage of that sunset, we will bring this up with you before your reception begins and take you out for 5-10 minutes to get some spectacular shots – it’s worth it! It’s something we play by ear and we will of course discuss this with you on the day.

 

wedding photography tips - photos taken during sunset
Have some beautiful photos taken during sunset

 

  • Family photos are necessary but can be a tedious process if they are disorganised and if Uncle Bob keeps disappearing for a cigarette.
  • Notify each person that is required for family photos, they need to say close by and to wait for instructions from us.
  • We will ask you for a family photo list and different combinations of the photos you want. Please provide names of people so we can call them out when needed.
  • Unless you have some special requests, detailed shot lists of photos to be taken during the day are not required.
  • Your dress will get dirty, don’t freak out about it.

 

 

 

  • Have some nice flat shoes that you can wear during your portraits and at the reception. Your feet will thank you for it.
  • We can recommend some great videographers that compliment our style. We’ve worked with them before and we work great together – this is quite important.
  • Don’t choose too many locations for your portrait photographs. You don’t want to be rushing around in a car all day.
  • Veils are very pretty, grooms and guests will stand on them.
  • If the time is right and there is some great light around, have some night portraits.

 

Bride and Groom lighting sparklers at Abbotsford Convent Wedding
Night portraits

 

  • Feed your photographer and videographer. It’s a long day.
  • Your favourite photos won’t be the ones you think.
  • Have a sparkler farewell.
  • Lastly, if it’s one thing you do take away from this and that is don’t forget to have fun, laugh, cry and be yourself!
Have fun and be yourself

 

Wedding Photography Tips : Copyright 2018

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