Wedding Day Guide
Wedding days are full of love, excitement and overflowing emotions. And there's so much to do! .
To make sure the day runs smoothly and to help you feel relaxed I've written a wedding day guide with loads of info and heaps of handy bridal hints.
It’s great to know all of this information before the day. It’s a lot, so don’t worry because I will be with you during this epic day. You can think of me like your extra bridesmaid on the ground ( the super power of fixing things before anyone realizes they happened). If you need to swap around the gender pronouns please do so as we are extremely supportive of all weddings. If your day is not running specifically to the below guide, you still can relate to the information and will pick up great tips and hints for your special day.
Getting Ready Photos
I try to start with the boys, spending around 40 - 60 minutes. I'll take photos of the rings and some candid shots of the guys getting dressed, having some drinks or whatever mischief they are up to.
When I arrive to the ladies I like to say a big hello and meet all your besties. Then I get straight to work photographing all the gorgeous wedding details. Please place everything in one place – the shoes, veil, accessories, lingerie, gifts, perfume bottle & anything that is part of the story of your day. And at the risk of sounding like your mother (sorry!) please make sure the room is tidy and uncluttered.
I take the photos of you having your hair and make-up done near complete so you are looking your best (ie: not with half a face of make-up done). You might like to wear a pretty robe or some luxury pajamas for getting ready as well as your bridesmaids as it looks stylish in the photos. If you are giving gifts please make sure I'm in that room - those shots are always so emotional.
Start getting ready early so you have plenty of time for photos and time to sip champagne with your tribe before leaving for the ceremony.
I spend about 60 - 90 minutes with the bride’s tribe before either the first look or the ceremony.
We aim to get to the ceremony venue and photograph the set-up as the boys arrive. If you have chosen to have 2 photographers, one will photograph guests arriving and one will go stay with the bride a little longer for those beautiful photos putting on the veil and nervous and emotional moments as parents arrive.
The First Look
(privately seeing each other before the ceremony)
This is one of my favorite parts of the wedding day to photograph because it's so intimate and emotional. It will just be the two of you (and me of course!) sharing the first moment as you see each other. It's just so romantic!
On the day I will find the place for the first look depending on the light. It will be somewhere pretty and private, where the only spectator might be a bird in the tree. If we can factor in 30 - 45 minutes for the first look it's perfect to capture the first look followed by a few sneaky couple photos around the area. The first look and portrait session is a huge bonus if you are having a wedding with an early sunset.
I love the ancient tradition of seeing each other for the first time walking down the aisle, but I assure you that you still get to walk down the aisle with just as many butterflies but you will feel more relaxed and just as excited.
There are so many pros to doing a first look. I highly recommend it. BEAUTY HINT: Make sure your hair and make-up artist stay for touchups after the first look. I try to keep you in the shade and we are not doing any energetic running, lifting or dancing shots. But its nice to make sure you are picture-perfect before the ceremony starts.
During the ceremony we try our best not to stand in the way of guests or too close to you during the ceremony. We won't have any interaction during the ceremony until you walk back down the aisle as a married couple. I will be in front of you, walk back down the aisle nice and slow just in case you start a slight jog in the excitement of the moment. Relax, smile, dance, kiss your way down that aisle - you are married!
After the ceremony we give you 10-15 minutes for congratulations, popping champagne, hugs and kisses and any other scheduled events before family shots. We try to work from a list you have provided prior your wedding. Even if it’s a small list I like to know we have documented all the correct combinations.
If you can have someone with a booming voice who pretty much knows everyone to stand next to me it will speed up the process a lot. That person (aka my hero) can call back Uncle Bob who is wandering off to the bar.
Bridal Party Photos
After the family shots (I allow about 15 - 20 mins, give or take) I will take the bridal party away from the guests for bridal party photos. First we will take photos with the whole bridal party followed by smaller combos. Then I send your epic bridal party straight to the bar. This allows us to get the really romantic shots of just the two of you, which is easier without your bridal party watching. Then there might be time for you both to join cocktail hour or steal some alone time before the reception starts. The duration may alter if we need to travel from location to location.
We photograph throughout the reception except when people are eating. It makes them uncomfortable and isn’t so pretty.
Please ask the venue to provide us with a meal if we are documenting the reception. We prefer dining in the shadows with your other vendors rather than with the guests so we can eat quietly and quickly, and within view of the reception so we don’t miss any important shots.
Let us know during the night if there are any special photos you want otherwise we will continue with candid shooting of the evening and formalities.
I find working backwards from the reception is a good way to calculate how many hours of coverage you need. After the last formality which is usually the dance we like to get 30-60 minutes of the dancing and party time so the whole day is documented. Once we get that hour of dance floor craziness our job is done. We are always sad to say goodbye, but also secretly can't wait to get home to download the photos from your big day.
Need some wedding inspiration? Take a look at our Journal here