CONGRATULATIONS! NOT JUST ON YOUR ENGAGEMENT, BUT ALSO ON HAVING MORE CHOICES TO GET BETTER PHOTOS AT YOUR WEDDING
1. First thing to do is obviously to choose the type of photography made for you
Some questions to ask yourself before starting your search: What would your ideal wedding pictures look like? There are 4 main types of wedding photography styles:
• photojournalism (the events are captured by the photographer as they proceed, in their real form, without his intervention; aspect correlated with newspaper photography, hence the name of “photojournalism”)
• traditional (the photographer directs, knows beforehand what background to use, how and whom to photograph, you will hear him giving directions always and always directing on the wedding day)
• artistic (unconventional images from creative angles, the photographer acts as an artist)
• illustrative (a combination of traditional and photojournalistic and focuses on composition, background and light. The photographer is involved as much as necessary so as not to destroy the naturalness of the moment)
2. Getting Ready
Having a set wedding day timeline is absolutely crucial to how the day will go, and it starts with getting ready. By having photographs of the preparations you will be able to relive the time you are apart, the laughs, the tears and all the other beautiful moments. When you’re choosing your getting-ready venue, make sure there’s plenty of natural light and space. Also choose locations with large windows for indoor photos, the more room you can get, the better. Natural light is the best and plays a huge roles in photography. When clients email us about the right venue to choose for preparation, we want the size of windows to be larger possible and with more free space. I’ve shot thousand of weddings, and when my brides think outside the box and choose something unique to them, this helps me to create a better and more personalised photo story. This will match the specific wedding style and will offer the best opportunities for me to shooting something beautiful, with natural light and open spaces, full dose of creativity. If you check my portfolio, you’ll likely choose shots in which the bride is bathed in soft and bright light.
Candid shots for getting ready. While we do stage things and get formal photos as would be expected, the candid things that happen are almost always the most memorable. When it comes to getting ready photos, this photos can make the difference, makes things more interesting and help tell a story. Look for moments of genuine emotion, and capture the photojournalism part, not only the perfect portraits. For example while the bride is getting ready, capture all of the hair and makeup preparations, and mom’s reaction to all of this happening.
Get the details – detail shots can sort of be cheesy and even feel pointless, but actually they are very important element of photographic storytelling and documentation of the wedding day. For this reason don’t be surprised if the photographer collect all the details that are special for your wedding. This normally includes the wedding dress, wedding rings, bride bouquet, wedding shoes, the twins for the groom, tie or papillon, groom suit, and all other accessories. During this part of the wedding day, we most commonly will capture all of this essential detail items. We always prefer that the bouquet and the wedding rings be with the bride in the morning, in this way we can take beautiful pictures with all details together. Maybe not everyone is super sentimental, but this helps to highlight some key elements of the couple associating with this special day, and after years and years when the couple looks back at their photos, always bring back unique feelings and great emotions.
I enjoy photographing wedding accessories and details. Give me your gorgeous destination wedding details, they are little gems of insight into your characters and personalities. They are a part of the wedding design and style and therefore say something about who you are as people. If you are having a destination wedding you can often embrace the art, culture, and character of your wedding location. From the stationery, invites, envelopes, menus, cards to your jewelry, flowers, keepsakes, perfume, shoes, veil and more. These are elements of your wedding that I can use in the photos to help create a unique record of your day.
Bride Getting Ready – I prefer having their photo taken after their hair and makeup is done. I like to create beautiful, stylish emotional portraits of you looking great. I want to capture the emotion and excitement as you get ready. Those wonderful moments with your bridesmaids, mother, sister or whoever else is helping you. To take the photos of bride getting ready naturally take longer time. I give the same amount of time to both the bride and groom, but I dedicate more time to photographing the bride, because naturally it takes more time.
While you are in the earlier stages of getting ready I like to concentrate on documenting the location and atmosphere and creating really nice photos of your details and accessories. You can improving the bride getting ready photos by having a spacious room, few people, the helps us to have the space to be able to move and work. Also keep the room tidy, this will help you to stay relaxed and will look so much better and natural in the photos. Another suggestion is to put your wedding dress on last.
The bride getting ready photos should be stunning photos that document a very important moment… you are putting on your wedding dress and this means we are about to go to the wedding ceremony! Below are a few pictures from the bride getting ready photos. To get a better idea of my wedding coverage you can view images from full weddings on this page.
The bridesmaids – Dresses for bridesmaids, bouquets, gifts, and must-have bridesmaids photos. At each wedding where the bride wished to have the bridesmaids dressed as well I took advantage and experimented with different ideas for pictures with them. Of course I want to share them with you, maybe it inspires by the nice collection. If you like something specific let us know and we will put you in touch directly with the bride! 🙂 You may also want to have some toast and prosecco or champagne, so your bridesmaids open the bottle and all have a drink. This creates some natural interaction and the same time is a wonderful moment to photograph.
The groom getting ready photos are important because they create a record of what the groom does while he prepares for his wedding. When it puts the tie/papillon for example, the twins, close the suit, or all the beautiful portraits when it’s ready. All important moments to document at this part, in order to relive every moment of your special day, both together and as well the friends and family.
There are times where the groom decide to get ready alone. Or mostly, the groom will get ready together with his best man/men. Generally, I focus more on the finishing stages of the men getting ready. While they brush the teeth, shave, shower, etc, I take images of the wedding location, or taking beautiful shots of the wedding details. There are rare cases when I document this moments. I especially like the interaction part, and emotion between them, The genuine, real, joy, authentic feelings, these in my view are wonderful photographic moments. The person helping you to adjust the bow-tie, inserting cufflinks or putting on braces are moments that I will easily photograph and same time capture the feelings and spontaneity between you and the people around you.
Special note for the groom! Please don’t carry your mobile phone in your pocket. The outline of an iPhone is not looking very romantic. Placing it in your jacket pocket it can create an imbalance in how the jacket falls. Otherwise in your trouser/pant pocket it just looks awful. So the best solution is to give your phone to your best man. The best is to not have anything in your pockets.
First look moment – It’s always a big bonus having a shady nice landscaped yard available around, this will give you the opportunity to get few portraits out of the way in outdoor spaces. This is a great opportunity if you are planning to have the “first look” moment. A first look is that moment when a couple sees each other on their wedding day before their wedding ceremony. It is an intimate yet private moment for the couple, lovely newer tradition, but not for everyone. Ideally, this moment should take place in intimacy and without the presence of guests or friends. The photographer proposes the place depending on where the light falls better and the rest: the emotions, the hugs and everything that follows then it is up to each couple separately. Then we do group pictures with the bridesmaids and best man/men and of course some with the couple.
But Do we need a “first look”? If you ask us, we will answer: Certainly!
How I told early, this it’s an intimate moment just for you two. Believe us, you may not be quiet anymore until all the guests leave 🙂 Have more time together. This is the biggest plus we see. Once you have seen one each other, you are free to take pictures together, to have fun with your loved ones. Because in the end it is your day, and no matter how you plan it, there will be some aspects that you will not be able to control. Either someone announces at the last moment that there is no coming, or contrary there are some guests you don’t invite and want to join at last minute. So to reserve 15-20 minutes just for you two, in a corner hidden from the rest of the guests that are waiting for you it’s always a great idea.
Don’t think that the bride led by father to the altar will be less exciting just because you have already seen one each other. We recommend that you opt for the first look on the day of the wedding, but in the end you, as a couple, have to make the decisions that best suit you and organise the day. What do you think of this idea? If you’ve already had a wedding, have you chosen or not to see yourself before the wedding and if so, how was it? Give us feedback regarding this!
Writing your vows on the wedding day – if we could introduce a beautiful moment, it would definitely be to writing the vows. Ok maybe there are speeches, but sometimes brides choose to say them at the religious or civil ceremony, among all the guests, other times after the first look on the wedding day. It is true that each time, the result are full of emotions, they will surely turn into a memorable moment that will reach directly the wedding album for memories.
Is it all about your feelings and not about your writer talent. Same as the First Dance, not all brides are professional dancers, but is always an exciting and expected moment for all the guests. All the best comes from the heart and it doesn’t matter the words you put together. Just be honest and your vows will be perfect, just because they are yours! Also our video team will thank you. Often videographers adjust the song of the wedding clip according to the tone and message of the vows. The words and the looks of the bride and groom are the main elements for creating an exceptional film. After all, it is your choice! We have presented all the arguments that we have gathered throughout our experience. But we will always argue that brides have to choose only what they represent. If you definitely do not want this moment, you better give it up!
Photographing the wedding ceremony – after finishing the photography of the bride and groom getting ready and the first look if you decide to have it, we may be walking to the wedding ceremony. Once we are there my photography becomes totally candid. Everything you will do during the ceremony is what I will photograph. The wedding ceremony is for you to enjoy and remember and I will document with photos in photojournalist way.
I am not able to help you or to guide you during this moments, but I will certainly give you some advice and tips. In fact there are various crucial moments and parts that I will photograph. I will start with the photos of the wedding ceremony location. Usually I am trying to do this before the wedding ceremony, but sometimes is it not possible and I am doing this later after the wedding ceremony. For outdoors ceremony I will make photos of that area, the beautiful views, the decor. If you are getting married in a church I will photograph few photos of the church, flower arrangements, candles, lighting and other design elements it will be nice for you to have and remember. Especially as on the day, you may be too caught up in the moment to fully appreciate them.
The moments I pay attention most is when the groom, groomsmen, parents, bridesmaids, and the bride that enter, here I will be taking lots of photos. During the ceremony, you may have speeches, music, ring and vows exchange, and the first kiss, there will be many emotions and feelings. I am there to document as much as possible, I will photograph all this. Once the ceremony is come to the end and you signed the documents it’s time to leave, first we can surely take some family photos in the church if it is your preference.
When you exchange the rings try to be aware of how you appear to the photographer who is taking crucial picture. If you will turn away or block the view, the chances of getting a good shot are greatly reduced. Consider also to asking your guests to not take photos during the ceremony. Also will be great if the bride and groom exit last from the ceremony area. The photos of your exiting to a shower of petals or rice are looking really great! In cases of rice, traditional in Italy to throw over the newlyweds, just buy the pre-washed kind and it doesn’t have any dust with it.
Here are some examples of my wedding ceremony photography. I am showing the locations and atmosphere more than the people to give you some ceremony ideas. At this point, you can view some examples of complete weddings.
Intimate Portraits – Couple Photosession, together forever
Your photo session and portraits as a couple are most likely the photos that will make it to enlargement, and ultimately onto a wall in your home. Right after the wedding ceremony, at some stage, I will take you for a few photos together. When I am taking your photos I am not going to pose you making you feel awkward, I am going to ask you to take a stroll, hold hands, talk to each other and express yourselves to one another. Admittedly, I always choose somewhere with beautiful surroundings and fantastic light for your photos. By doing things that for you are completely effortless you will get photos looking happy and in love in one of the most beautiful places on earth.
How long will the couple session /portraits take – I will need minimum 20 minutes for your couple session, I can create lot of photos in this amount of time. But if you prefer to take less time that’s fine and if you want more then great! More time means we can go to more places and change the scenery. My clients say they really enjoy their private photo sessions. It’s an opportunity to get away from the guests and spend a little time alone. I want to take you away to a quiet place with some beautiful scenery and perfect light, and just let you be you.
After your private photo session, you can either head back to the cocktails and aperitifs or group photos
At this point I suggest you head to the drinks reception and start enjoying yourselves. You can talk to your guests and mingle and enjoy the fact that you are now married – mission accomplished! During this time I take lots of pictures of the guests while they are spend good time. During the cocktails, we will also take some group photos with family and the bridal party. I suggest you to have most of this photos: Bride with brides parents, bride with brothers and sisters, bride with groom and brides parents and also brothers and sisters, bride with close family and extended family, groom with groom parents, with brothers and sisters, with parents and both brothers and sisters, close family and extended family, bride with bridesmaids, bride with groom and both bridesmaids and groomsmen, groom with bestmen, and finally the bride with groom and everyone!
Wedding Reception – themes, decor, wedding cake, speeches, first dance and party
The wedding reception is a part of the day where you can really inject your style into your wedding. You can make a statement about who you are as people – it’s time to show your originality and individuality. I like to photograph the dinner in a way where I capture the atmosphere of that occasion, where it happens what it is like and so on. My preference is to photograph it in a way where I can tell the story of that moment without interrupting or disturbing the guests as they eat, drink and enjoy themselves. I prefer to wait for the spontaneous moments such as any impromptu toasts or maybe you have planned speeches. I will photograph the people speaking, yours and the guests’ reactions. the laughter, tears and beautiful genuine emotions of the moment.
Speeches – Few were the weddings attended by a few people close to a speech and most were the weddings outside but if you were to take one of the ideas in this post, we would be happy to take it! It’s the most sentimental moment! Often they leave with tears and tears in their arms, cry guests, we cry too 🙂 and the photos speak for themselves. This time does not last more than 15-20 minutes and I usually talk to a maximum of 5 people. For example one of the parents, a brother, the bridesmaid. There are speeches prepared at home, written on the sheet with a little humor and a lot of love. It was an amazing moment.
I suggest you also to use Bengalese lights when you enter the restaurant. It is an idea that does not require a big budget to achieve, instead it creates a great atmosphere in pictures! It’s actually from our 2016 wedding season. You can find it on my Outdoor weddings portfolio.
Cutting the Cake – once dinner finishes it’s time to move to the party but before you can hit the dance floor you need to cut the cake. You can decorate the table or area where you cut the cake to make it even more beautiful, flowers and candles don’t cost much but make a huge difference to the aesthetics. It’s quite common at the moment for people to light sparklers during the cake cutting.
As well as having a wedding cake quite often there will also be a dessert buffet. A Fruit Corner & Lemonade – Candy Bar. This offers other delicious desserts, mini cakes, chocolate fountains and crowd favourites like tiramisu! Often it is also accompanied by a coffee corner for those that would like an espresso before starting the party. A very elegant solution is to offer some sweet dessert wine which many haven’t tried but everyone likes.
The first dance – For the first dance, choose a song that you love and one that speaks to the relationship between the bride and groom. If your wedding dress is long or has a train, bustle it so you don’t trip over it. The first dance traditionally takes place after you cut the cake but I see couples having their first dance whenever they want. I have seen it at the start of the reception and during it and even during the cocktails. However, most people still have it at the end of the evening before the party. Here is my collection of the top songs for the Bride & Groom first dance at weddings. A whole new world – Peabo Bryson and Regina Bell, All my life – K-Ci and Jojo, Always – Atlantic Starr, Always and forever – Heatwave, Amazed – Lonestar, Are you gonna kiss me or not – Thompson Square, At last – Etta James, Beautiful in my eyes – Joshua Kadison. This are my favourite bride and groom first dance songs. Which one you will choose for your first dance? Also for my American clients, it is also common for them to have the father-daughter dance and the mother-son dance. I love these dances as the parents are often so emotional!
The Party – now that the formalities are over it’s time to open the dance floor. It’s best to try and get everyone dancing quickly to get some good photos as often people don’t go crazy for long as they are overdressed and have probably been eating way too much! Some nice lighting on the dance floor can make the party photos more interesting. Some types of laser lighting can create unattractive hot spots on people as they dance so think about that when choosing your dance floor lighting setup. My photography of the party is purely documentary. I am there to capture people having fun and the atmosphere. Earlier in the day, we did the group photos, these usually include the parents, relatives and bridal party, and often we don’t have time to include other people. However, later in the evening you can take more photos with your friends as you are having fun! Regardless of what style or dance order you choose, enjoy it. This is a celebration, and everyone on the dance floor should have a good time.
Throw the bouquet – Now it’s the moment the bride takes her carefully made, beautifully arranged bouquet and is ready to throw it over the single ladies, who are waiting to catch it and ensure their future loved up happiness. Long time ago, it was considered very good luck to touch the bride 🙂 or even better luck to grab a piece of the bride, like the wedding dress or veil, but to avoid this king of stress brides began throwing their bouquets to distract their guests. Thankfully, guests were totally happy with grabbing at the flowers, which seemed to bring romantic luck for the future.
Wedding Garter – They say if you catch it your next in getting married. But there are people that have caught it two times, and still single 🙂
The wedding garter is a key component of a bride’s wedding day attire, hidden underneath her gown, waiting for the groom to retrieve it and toss to all the single men at the reception. The garter toss is an integral a part of the wedding day, yet many women partake in this old wedding tradition without really understanding its history and meaning. With so many varieties, styles and colours, you’ll want to make sure you select an appropriate one for your wedding. Tradition says that the garter was a symbol of the newlyweds consummating their marriage, so family and friends would take the garter as proof of consummation.
Today, the removal of the garter is reserved for the groom. This garter toss is very similar to the bouquet toss in that it is said that whoever catches the garter will be the next man to be married. The man who caught the garter will then place the garter on the woman who caught the bouquet. You may choose to wear your garter on either your left or your right leg based on your personal preference.
Last think remember that the wedding it yours! Your wedding reception and the ceremony are about you and your groom… Choose the right professionals like venue, decor, photographer, video team, and avoid the stress, create the perfect setting for gorgeous photographs and memories forever.