You’re so close! You have the dream venue, your dress and tux are on order, and your floral arrangements are picked with perfection. But, after that final slow jam is played at your reception and you return from the honeymoon, what will you have to remember your awesome party by? Your wedding photos! To make sure that your memory of this special day stays fresh in your mind for years to come, there are a few things you will want to tell your wedding photographer before your wedding day.
Special Items Included in Your Prep
Are you going to be wearing your grandmother’s necklace? Did you sew a piece of your Mom’s dress into your own? Discuss any special items such as pinning something to your bouquet or incorporating any family heirlooms. If you don’t tell your wedding photographer about the notable additions, they may not know they’re there. Some of these little details are pretty obvious but sometimes they are hidden gems that your photographer might not find unless they know where they are.
Guys, this applies to you too! Are you putting stickers on the bottom of your shoe showcasing your wedding date? Did you write your gal a love letter before the big day? Tell your wedding photographer to get a snap of these too!
The Style of Your Dress
Does your dress have a corset back? The professionals make those buttons look easy, but they may take your BFF a little longer! If your dress simply zips up in the back, it’ll go on quickly and easily.
This is something to mention as it needs to be budgeted into your timeline, which is something your wedding photographer should be helping you to determine. The order of events is essential in making sure you get the pictures you want!
Details about your Ceremony
This one is particularly important if you are planning to have a church wedding, but it applies to all. Are there any restrictions from your officiant or church? Are you having a Catholic mass? A seasoned photographer knows that the traditional Catholic mass always sneaks that first kiss in just after vows unlike other ceremonies. They will want to be sure they catch that shot.
Are you including a four-legged friend? Do you have a ring bearer or flower girl? Small children can be fickle- it’s not their fault, walking down that aisle is a big responsibility! – but you will want to discuss this with your wedding photographer. They may have tips and tricks up their sleeve for including them in your ceremony in the most enjoyable way possible.
Sensitive Family Situations
If you have someone very special to you that passed away before your wedding, you may want to honor them or have a tribute to them. Be sure whatever you are doing to honor their memory is communicated with your wedding photographer, so they can make getting a picture of it part of the plan.
Another common discussion is divorced parents. If your parents are divorced, you may want to have separate photos taken with each of them. Or, if they’ve been remarried, the question about including or not including step parents is one that can be had in advance, and not the day of in front of said people. Perhaps you or your spouse-to-be already has children that you will be welcoming into your new family. That’s a shot you won’t want to miss.
Special People You’d Like a Photo With
You know that person who you call your “aunt” but they aren’t really your aunt? Maybe it’s your mom’s best friend or perhaps your god parents. While they might not already be included in family group shots, if they are special to you, you’ll want to grab a shot with them.
Unless you specify that you would like a wedding photo with this person, it may slip through the cracks in the chaos of the big day. Be certain your wedding photographer knows if any special people in your life don’t fit into one of the groups that will automatically get snapped with you in your white dress.
Disabilities Among your Family or Bridal Party
This one is pretty self-explanatory but may not be something you thought to share with your wedding photographer.
You don’t want to get caught in a situation with a staircase when trying to accommodate someone in a wheelchair! Think through your bridal party and family situations and make sure everyone’s going to be comfortable while your flashing your pearly whites.
Meaningful or Favorite Places at Your Venue
If there is a stand-out spot at your venue, take advantage! What made you fall in love with it? Is there a waterfall? Bridge? Beautiful courtyard?
Share any of your “must-have” photo locations with your wedding photographer. This way, you can go to those locations first to ensure that they aren’t missed. A gorgeous gallery wall is in your future!
How You’d Like to Spend Your Cocktail Hour
Congrats! You are officially married!
You have a choice to make- receiving line, or no receiving line? While your friends and family may appreciate the chance to congratulate you directly after the ceremony, this can be a big time commitment and something that needs to be shared with your photographer. If you’d prefer to forgo this in favor of a glass of wine and mingling, many people will support your decision. It’s your day, after all.
Also, be sure to discuss with your wedding photographer if you are planning on doing extended family group photos. If so, the best time to take them is immediately following the ceremony while everyone is in one place. People are often excited and onto the next step after you’ve said, “I do!” Your photographer can help you wrangle all your Aunts and Uncles for a great group shot before you all grab your mini corn dogs.
Details about Your Reception
Time to party! Here’s a pleasant surprise- you have a choice as to whether you want to include those traditional elements of the reception or not!
Either way, your photographer needs to be informed of your preferences, so they are in a prime position to capture those precious moments.
Let them know if you are planning on doing a garter and bouquet toss. Hey, Beyonce.
Your cake cutting will also happen during the reception; if you are not all about stopping the party for this to happen, it can be a fun little private moment for you and your boo – but make sure you tell your wedding photographer. Then they are right there to capture the intimate moment! If you want all eyes on you- share that too – people make great faces when they are eagerly awaiting cake.
The Informal Formals
Do you keep in touch with all. the. people.? If you have a crew that is particularly important to you, the reception is a great time to get an informal photo with all of them in it.
High school friends that are there but not in the wedding party? Check. The ol’ neighborhood crew? Done. Workmates? On it.
More than likely, these groups will be seated at the same table for dinner, so it’ll be easy to gather them all up and make a memory! And making memories is definitely what it’s all about!
By communicating all of this with your wedding photographer, you’ll guarantee all your unforgettable memories will be a part of your wedding photos!
Looking for a photographer who won’t miss any of these little (big) details? I’d love to chat!