WEDDING TIPS FROM A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

by Jessica Guadagno Photography

Here are a few tips that I think are helpful for couples to be in their journey to find just the right photographer. 

 

When you have a first meeting with your potential photographer, ask questions.  Ask about how they go into wedding photography and their approach.  Find out how long edit time takes and when you will receive your images.  Ask if there is a photographer’s assistant or second shooter and finally, find out if you receive your images or must purchase them separately.

 

Stick to a schedule.  It is very important to keep a detailed schedule and stick to it.  It is very helpful for the photographer to know exactly how the day will go to make sure there is plenty of time for photographs.  Try to get your timeline to your photographer at least one week in advance.  This is also a good time to send must have shots.  This is a list of images that the photographer must not miss.

 

Think about the lighting.  Lighting is very important when planning great wedding photographs.  If you have an evening wedding, make sure there is plenty of time for pictures. 

 

Decide what is most important to you.  There are many typical wedding shots and traditions, but more and more, couples are straying from some of the traditions and paving their own path to make their wedding truly unique.  The special traditions, along with candid moments, reveal the true meaning of the day.  To make this idea more focused, I tell clients to let me know what shots are most important to them and to send me images they love and may want to recreate. 

 

Hire vendors that you like.  If you have ever been in a wedding, you know that the couple spends a lot of time with vendors.  Choose vendors whose company you enjoy and who will help your day be more fun and less stressful.

 

First Look.  I often recommend a first look (when the bride and groom see each other for the first time before the ceremony.  This gives them a few moments alone, when they can get portraits done before the wedding.  I recommend this because weddings go so fast, so this allows couples to enjoy their whole wedding.  This moment also sets the tone for the rest of the day, allows couples to relax more before their ceremony.  However, there are some couples that this may not interest and that is fine too.  I always respect a couple’s decision in this matter, as it is a personal one. 

Keep The Moment Sacred. As a photographer, one of the challenges when I am shooting the bride during her walk down the aisle and I see a dozen bright screens of cell phones and an iPad or two leaning into the aisle to snap that personal photo. These screens will not only be an ugly distraction in the peripheral of the photo and will make the photo look dated in the coming years, but most importantly, it takes away from the special moment of the bride walking towards her groom. If this is something that would bother you, ask the officiant to make an announcement right before the ceremony about the use of iPhones during the procession and recession (also mentioning that the bride and groom had hired a wedding photographer for a reason, and for them to just relax, enjoy, and take the experience in with their eyes, not their iPhones).

 

Avoid Stress/Get Things Done In Advance.  Booking “big” stuff such as a coordinator and photographer right away will help you feel productive.  What stresses most of us out is the little things—the details. We’re bound to have hiccups during the engagement process, but keeping up and working as a team with your fiancé will help a lot.

 

Relax and enjoy your day.  Once your day is here, you have done everything you can at this point to plan the best event possible, relax and take it all in. 

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2017 Summer Cover Photo by

Jessica Guadagno Photography