When I talk to couples about wedding photography tips, some simple things come up across the border.
I’ve been lucky enough to be on both side of things, firstly as a bride to be, and of course, as a photographer. (Photographer first, then came bride)
Here are some tips on how to get the best wedding photographs of your day.
1. Hire a decent wedding photographer – It sounds simple but with so many wedding photographers out there, it’s so important to hire the best one that fits both the creativity you are looking for as well as personality. You may have friends who take photos as a hobby but wedding photography is no joke. It’s a high pressure day for the wedding photographer to make sure they don’t miss the details. Do your research and shortlist the ones you love the look of. Don’t be afraid to book in consultations, this is the only way to see if your personality will match. One of the things I get a lot at weddings, is guests saying how they wish they would have hired a better photographer and not had a friend or family member photographing for them.
2. Engagement shoot – If the photographer offers an engagement shoot, make the most of it and book it! It’s a great way of getting comfortable in front of the camera and getting to know your photographer. It may be the first time ever you are about to be in front of a camera, why not give it a practise to ease yourself into it?!
3. Make Up Artist – On camera make up is very different to off camera make up. The best way to ensure you’ll get the best out of your photos is to hire a professional make up artist for your wedding day.
4. Communication – Your wedding photographer has done this many times and though every wedding is very different, the basics are the same. Communicate with your photographer in advance which shots are a must ie if you want formals, make a list of the key people in the photos. Don’t run a long list of specifics to the point where the photographer has no creative control of the photos. That’s why you hired them – To capture your wedding creatively!
5. Lighting – Us photographers work with light, it’s basically what we do, we play with light to get the best photos possible for our couples. If you are having a wedding during the summer months, try to plan with your photographer, the bride & groom portraits or any formals at a time where there isn’t harsh lighting. In the winter, there’s less day light, so try to book the ceremony for an earlier time so that you can make the most of the portraits before the sun sets.
6. The Ceremony – During the ceremony, it’s not uncommon for the priest, vicar etc to not allow photography. The ceremony is such a key part to photograph because it’s one of the times of the day you will totally be lost in the moment. So it’s so important to make sure there are no restrictions in place so the photographer can capture those ring exchange photos. Communicate with the team ahead and find out if there are any restrictions, if so, work something out to best allow the photographer to do his or her job to get the best photographs possible.
7. Creativity – Hopefully, the reason you booked the photographer is because you love their work and creativity! On the day of the wedding, don’t be afraid to follow the photographer’s lead for portraits as they are recommending certain locations and photos for a reason. You trust them so you booked them, work together to get the photos that will work best for you as a couple paired with their creativity!
8. Time – Leave ample time for photography. Generally an hour to one and a half hour for bridal prep is plenty to get the bridal prep photos such as dress, shoes, jewellery, getting ready photos and any other detail shots as well as some candids.If you choose to have formals, this is time consuming so allow more time for this session. Allow around 10 minutes per shot as it can take time to get the different groups in place and pose. For the bride & groom, around 30 minutes is good but of course, check with your photographer.
9. Food – If your wedding photographer is being fed on the day, try and let the kitchen know to serve them along with the rest of the guests so that they are ready to photograph the speeches after the wedding breakfast. Most of the time, photographers and videographers are left to last to feed.During this time most photographers don’t photograph – It’s a bit gross photographing people eating and most likely won’t be highlights of your photos!
10. Have FUN! – Seriously just have fun and let the photographer do their job – By the point of booking you would have had the time to build a relationship with one another and so enjoy the photo creating and have a blast!
If you’re looking for a Manchester Wedding Photographer or a North West Wedding Photographer who is also available for Destination weddings – Shoot me an email here – I would love to hear from you!
You can see some Real Weddings here