Updated: Jun 11, 2020
So, having been married and having had the privilege to be a part of so many beautiful wedding days, I thought I would put together some musings I’ve picked up along the way.
1. Preparation is key!
Have a think about how you want your day to go. Drawing up a timeline of your day beforehand is a great way of making sure things go smoothly. From a photographer’s point of view, this is a brilliant way of ensuring you get all the shots you want, especially the all important private shoot to get those beautiful images of you and your new spouse! If you share this with your photographer, then it’s one less thing to worry about as they will do their best to ensure your day runs as smoothly as possible. I love to build good relationships with the other suppliers and people in charge, making it a real team effort for a seamless day!
2. Things don’t always go to plan!
Ok, so maybe you’ve planned your day all the way through to the last call at the bar, but… there may be something that doesn’t go quite as you imagined. Don’t sweat it! Everyone who is there for your special day is there because they love you and want to be a part of one of the happiest days of your life. No-one will care if the timings are out, or some of your favours came out the wrong colour! You also have a team of people who will do their damnedest to make sure everything does run smoothly and perfectly for you. And at the end of the day, the whole reason for everything you have planned, the sole purpose of your day and the person that really matters will be going home with you anyway! Everything always works out, and even if it doesn’t, either way, you win :)
3. Pinterest is your friend!
Having a think about the shots that are the most important to you is really helpful for your photographer. Pinterest is a great place to look for inspiration for the type of photography you would love to have and this will also help you choose a photographer that is a perfect fit for your day. If you love the quirky photos, look for a photographer who has that style in their portfolio. On the other hand, if it’s traditional shots you’re after, look for photographers who show a flair for them! You can create boards and share them with your photographer too, so they can see what floats your boat :) Also, write a list of the group shots you would like - this makes sure Great Aunt Lilly isn’t accidentally left out of the album!
4. What is most important to you?
When planning your wedding, talk to your partner about the aspects of the day that are the most important to you both. This will help when budgeting, as a wedding is one of the most expensive days of your life! If the cake is important to you, be prepared to spend money on getting it just right. Maybe the flowers, centrepieces or the venue means the most to you - then spend the money on those things! Think about what you can afford to scrimp on, maybe by making things yourself or even by deciding that you don’t necessarily NEED all the things you’ve saved to your ‘dream wedding’ Pinterest board!
In my personal opinion, (and I know I may be a little biased) I truly believe that photography is something to plan to spend a good chunk of your wedding budget on, especially if you have a particular style in mind or photographer that you get a special feeling about… it’s all about getting the ‘feeling’ in every part of your planning! Other suppliers may hate me for saying it, but by the end of the evening, the cake has been eaten, the flowers are dying, the dress is ready to be stored in the attic, the band or DJ have packed away and the guests have gone home. The photographer is only half way through their job as they will be going home to back up your images, edit them and create your album. These images are your lasting memories of the day and can potentially be a source of pure joy and something to share with your friends and family for years to come. I love the thought of my wedding photos outliving me, and that my great great great grandchildren might one day look through my wedding album and get a glimpse of a time when people didn’t travel to their weddings via hovercraft, or get married on the moon!
I love candid shots and capturing beautiful ‘in-the-moment’ emotions that always play a huge part in a wedding. For me (and I know I’m not alone here) the thought of having to stand around trying to ‘smile’ convincingly whilst having my photo taken is not my idea of fun. A lot of couples worry that they have to look into the camera and smile for every shot but this is definitely not the case! Obviously there is a time and a place for staged photos, but the best thing about getting married is that everyone is already so happy and full of love! It is much more exciting and rewarding for a photographer to capture those real emotions - and they make such beautiful images! Looking at your new spouse and talking about how your day is going, or even just messing around, is a fantastic way to relax and appear as blissfully happy as you feel! I am so self-conscious about the way I look in photos, but I was so happy with the way I looked in my own wedding pictures, something I put down entirely to the fact that I was so flipping happy! For those of you a little dubious of being the centre of attention and having hundreds (yes, hundreds) of photos taken of you, I leave you with the wise words of Roald Dahl;
‘A person who has good thoughts cannot ever be ugly. You can have a wonky nose and a crooked mouth and a double chin and stick-out teeth, but if you have good thoughts it will shine out of your face like sunbeams and you will always look lovely.’
I couldn’t agree more!