Planning your wedding photography
Your wedding is, hopefully, a once in a lifetime experience and naturally most people want to capture something of the day in pictures. Every wedding is unique and with so much going on and many unplanned moments it would be impossible to catch everything. With that in mind here are a few ideas.
Looking at many weddings in magazines you’d think they’re all fantastically choreographed days with matching colours and everyone on their best behaviour. In the real world that isn’t true, thank goodness! The best part of every wedding, besides the coming together of two people in love, is the people and how spontaneous they are. You simply cannot predict the moment where your young niece sings ‘The teddy bear’s picnic’ skipping down the aisle. A photographer can’t capture all of these moments, but if you’d like to see some of them in years to come then a photographer whose photo-journalistic style you like is a good investment. Have a look through their portfolios to see what they’ve portrayed from other people’s events to get an idea of their style. This type of photography is also good for showcasing key events, from the bridal and grooms parties getting ready to that first look at each other.
Another idea is to put disposable cameras on the tables at the reception. You’ll get many images of thumbs and tablecloths, but you’ll also get some of the most relaxed candid shots of people being snapped by their nearest and dearest. When you come to print photos you’ll find you have some moments that you’d never have seen otherwise.
The small things
Aside from somehow immortalising spontaneity a photographer needs to carefully document the things that matter to you and this includes some of the small details. You’ll need to make sure your photographer is aware of these beforehand. This might be the inherited or borrowed necklace in your bouquet, some meaningful decorations or some other small but significant aspect of the day. Key objects such as the order of service, the rings and cake might also be on your list.
It’s also a good idea, if you’re having more formal shots, to organise someone to be chief cat herder, making sure all the right people are where they’re meant to be. People wander at weddings. Often a photographer’s assistant will attempt this, but a friend or bridesmaid who knows the key players can assist best. Make a list of the portraits and groupings you want before the big day as you’ll be sure to forget a key one on the day. If you want photos of the ceremony make sure it’s allowed at your location and if there are any restrictions.
A wedding is a day full of bustle and it goes by incredibly fast. With luck, these tips will help you to plan to snap some of the most important details of the day, as well as those moments you couldn’t have possibly imagined that make the day so very special.
Peter writes regularly about weddings for a variety of blogs and websites. He lives with his wife and 2 children, both of whom would like to know how to print photos and in his spare time he enjoys photography and goes hillwalking.