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How to get the MOST out of your wedding photography


Many couples are looking for the best value in wedding photography. While you may encounter many pricing options from your searching, what you should initially look for in a photographer is…Do you like their style? And then… Do you like their personality? Then you can decide on your price range and choose accordingly. But many couples lose time after the ceremony while trying to decide what photos they want, where they should be taken, and who should be in them, and then where are those people that you want in the photos? Out having a smoke?

What I’m about to tell you is first hand knowledge of what I see happen most often as the day of your wedding unfolds and how to make the most of your wedding photography dollars.

The day of your ceremony is here at last, you’re getting ready and you have so many things on your mind, you’re nervous, anxious, emotional, and then you have so many other things to account for as well. Some of you may have your photographer taking “Getting Ready shots”. This is a great idea because the photographs that are taken – document what happens from the beginning of your day to the end of your wedding. Plus, if you time it correctly there is time to take photos of the bride, the bride with her bridesmaids, and mother/daughter photos, details, etc. If you’ve booked a photographer who offers 2 photographers for your package then this offers you 1 photographer with the bride, and the other photographer with the groom…. both taking photos simultaneously before the wedding. This type of coverage is priceless because after the photos are all edited and placed in your gallery in the order they were taken, you get to see what the groom and/or bride was doing as each of you were getting ready.

Ok, so the next thing… before you know it things are happening so fast, suddenly it’s time for you to walk down the aisle. Then before you’ve blinked again -you’re married !!! Now here comes the beat the clock part most couples run into. I’m going to give you some ideas of what you can do to save time so you can maximize your time for group photos and more importantly get MORE photos of the bride and groom “together”.

1) Some weddings have a receiving line… if you want to save time, and if you aren’t going to feel bad about it – skip the receiving line, visit and thank your guests at the reception.

2) After the wedding, KNOW what group shots you want and make sure you’ve told the people who are going to be in the photos to be there so they can be ready for the photos.

3) KNOW where you want your group shots taken, whether at the church, or venue. Select a spot large enough with a nice backdrop and make sure it’s not in the bright sunlight. The best photos are taken in a shaded area blocked from direct sunlight. Avoid taking photos under a tree though as the sun filters through and creates a mottled effect on faces.

4) After your group shots, you’ve only got a certain amount of time to take photos of yourselves as the bride and groom before you have to be announced at your reception venue. Here is where you want to gain the most time so you can get lots of “together” shots. Your guest can wait!!!!! Your venue most likely has a bar and some hors deouves waiting for them while you’re being photographed. So take advantage of your day together and have the photographer take as many photos as possible, in different locations, in and around your venue.

5) If you’re still worried about your guests, opt for a photo booth set-up. There are low-cost options available. Your guests can have fun with it… they get their photos taken and then they also have a special momento from your wedding and you get MORE special fun pics of your guests having fun.

6) If you want even MORE photos, opt for doing a “First Look”. This is done before the wedding when the bride and groom choose to meet privately before they walk down the aisle. It’s intimate and quite an upcoming trend. I hear many brides and grooms say how much they enjoyed doing this and how romantic it was for them to meet together before the ceremony. Of course, I myself being the photographer, I also love it as it gives you MORE photographs. Then after the first look is over you can take MORE photos of the two of you together – before the wedding!

7) And if you want even MORE cool photos!!!!!! You can chose to do “The Day After”. This is another upcoming trend. Your photographers join you the day or two after your wedding and take MORE photos of you in your bridal attire either in and around your home together or out and about at your favorite location.

8) And if you want even MORE than that!!! You can do a “Trash The Wedding Dress” shoot. I’ve asked so many brides lately if they are going to trash their wedding dress and many still have not heard of this. It’s been common practice through the years, to preserve your wedding dress or save it for someone else in the family. The new practice is “trashing” the dress and documenting it with photos at a separate place of your choice and on another day. You can jump in a pool with your new husband, canoodle in the surf, run through the rain and mud puddles in some brightly colored “Wellies”. The sky is the limit here and the experience will be fun and memorable and will be documented forever.

9) And if you really want to go over the top and have everything documented, consider hiring your photographer for extra time and have them travel to your honeymoon destination to take even MORE photos. This is also becoming more popular as couples travel to exotic locations and want top-notch, creative photos of themselves.

The main objective for gaining the MOST out of your photography is careful planning and knowing what you want ahead of time. If you feel overwhelmed, then hire a wedding planner to be your assistant, and they will make sure every detail is covered for you so you can make the best use of your time.

All the best to you and may you gain lots of extra pics!

Hugs, Misti 🙂

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