In the past three years, I have shot plenty of weddings and I can say every wedding is different from one to another. However, one thing for sure is that every couple wants the best possible photos on their day without doubt. As I get more experienced shooting weddings, I have learned and gathered few tips on how to make sure you do get your special day captured the way it should be and here are my top 6:
1.Book a Decent Photographer!
You might be thinking this is too obvious but let me explain. Choosing the right photographer can be a very draining and stressful task. There are over 50,000 wedding photographers (registered as a business with HMRC) so How do you know who’s good and who’s not? Will your friend, who is great at taking photo of his family or the scenery can be good at shooting your wedding?
Do your research, check out the photographer’s website and make a shortlist of your top 5. Meet your photographer and get to know their personality. Taking good photos is only half of the job, the other half is having a great personality and people skills.
You will only regret it if you don’t do your homework. The number one thing people tell me again and again when we speak about what they would do differently if they were to get married now is that they wish they’d prioritised the photography more.
2.Trust Your Photographer
You found the photographer you love? Great Book him/her now! Of all the wedding photographers I know, one of their biggest complaints is when a client hands over an excessive shot list (few pages long) and overtakes the photographer’s part of the job.
I’m personally am a big fan of shot-lists, I always hand out a small shot list so the clients have an idea and a feel for the photos they will get putting their mind at ease. However, I usually take plenty more on the day and deliver more than what they expected.
Bear in mind, a good photographer will have experience and will have done this as a profession a lot longer that what you have done! So Trust your photographer, allow them to do their job and to be creative. They’ll enjoy the day more which will result in better photographs.
If you don’t trust your photographer then back to point 1 and book someone else!
3.Think about the light
Another thing that couples tend to not consider (or not aware that they need to consider). Be aware that light changes throughout the day and different light will result in different photographs.
For example, if you are having a winter wedding, it is likely that it starts to get dark around 4PM. Therefore, you really need to have your ceremony early in the day to give your photographer a fighting chance to get some portraits and group shots done in the daylight before it gets dark.
Also, when it comes to looking at possible venues, think about the light in each room. Is the bedroom you are getting ready in small and cramped? Are the ceremony room walls covered in dark wood with small windows? Please remember photography and available light goes hand in hand.
4.Think About The Ceremony
Your ceremony photographs will undoubtedly be some of the most important shots of the day. Most couples I speak to after their wedding say they were surprised just how much they cherished this part too. It also flies by in a nervous blur and you’ll likely not remember a whole lot about it, so these photos are doubly important. However a lot of vicars, priests and registrars won’t allow ceremony photography, or will insist that the photographer stands at the back of the room the whole time.
As a photographer this is gutting to hear the morning of the wedding so if you really value these images, make sure you speak to whoever is officiating your ceremony to find out if there are any limitations beforehand.
Another thing to consider is to politely ask your guests to not take photos during the ceremony (you can do so in the order of service). Guests holding up mobile phones as you walk down the aisle or flashes going off throughout the vows are only going to be distracting for you and other guests (and/or ruin the professional shots).
5.Leave Enough Time
I cannot stress how important this is. The time is the essence and the more time your photographer has the better. The photographers are the expert so ask them how long they think each element should take. For instance, group shots are notorious for taking longer than you expect. Having to round up the guest or camera shy aunt for the photos can take a little while so make sure your photographer has a list of names and if it is possible, delegate the task of organising the guest to a bridesmaid or usher.
6. Get Creative
Good wedding photographers are super creative so be open to their ideas and again, trust them! For your portraits listen to their ideas and don’t be afraid to try something different. The ideas often results in the most amazing and unique photographs.
I Hope these tips have been helpful.