Social media is a beautiful thing.
In this lovely technological world we live in, wedding photography and videography abounds (or should I say, bombards) newly engaged or soon to be engaged couples in the Instagram and Facebook world. For the bride and groom beginning to plan their wedding, social media is #life. it's an excellent and easy way to gather heart-stirring inspiration for your wedding day, and fall in love with the process of seeing everything come together for the big day. Just following a hashtag, you'll find beautiful photo after beautiful photo: picturesque backgrounds with just a halo of golden sun around the couples, wedding gowns swaying in the wind atop a breathtaking mountain, an awe inspiring flower wall at the altar (I think we can all thank Kimye for that one)... the list pretty much goes on. It's hard as a soon-to-be bride (or groom) not to get swept up in the beauty of it all, imagining yourself in those moments, picturing those types of shots for your wedding day.
But theeen- there's the reality of things, a reality I've noticed not everyone keeps in mind when they're planning. Yes, choosing an experienced photographer who's work you're totes in love with is one part of the equation of having photos you're in love with, but then there's the other part of the equation, which is the content your photographer works with.
So here's a list I've compiled of things you should consider when you're planning your wedding to best make your expectations and realities meet!
1. Expectation: You Want Lots of Fantastic Detail Shots.
Reality: You Don't Have Many Details.
Pretty things look pretty (amirite). Pinterest is chock-full of detail shots from weddings to serve as bridal inspo, from reception table centerpieces, to altar backgrounds, to hanging greenery above the dance floor (this is a new thing, but I dig it). The upside: details photograph BEAUTIFULLY and play a heavy hand in telling the "story" of your wedding day. The downfall: these things cost money and time planning, setting up and organizing.
Budgets are a real thing on your wedding day and sometimes corners get cut in order to prioritize the more important must-haves (like a photographer, *wink*), and that's completely ok. Just keep in mind that if lots of detail shots are important to you, there's gotta be lots of details to photograph.
2. Expectation: You're In Love With Sunset Shots.
Reality: Sometimes It Rains.
I feel like this is a no-brainer. As wedding photographers, we want the weather to be great just as much as you do, but....we can't control the weather. Be prepared with a back up plan (and a pair of umbrellas, maybe cute rainboots) in the event that it rains.
Related: overcast days. You can't see the sun setting if there's a huge white blanket over the sky.
3. Expectation: You Love Shots Of Couples Snuggling And Laughing.
Reality: You're Extremely Reserved And Not At All Into PDA.
This happens a lot more than everyone thinks. You fall in love with a photographer's images- they're emotive, touching, they make you feel something and you want just that.
The truth is everyone is a bit camera shy, at least for the first fifteen minutes of a session (or a wedding day), so it does take a bit of time to warm up and relax (this is also why I feel it's ULTRA IMPORTANT to meet your photographer beforehand; see also: Wedding Tip #1: KNOW Your Photographer). And we, as photographers, have the techniques to help you come out of your shell and show us the real you, underneath.
But if the real you is also someone very reserved and shy, your images will reflect that. And that's totally ok.
4. Expectation: You Want Creative Portraits.
Reality: You've Got 20 Minutes for Portraits of Just The Two Of You.
Creativity takes time.
Wedding day schedules eat UP time.
We like to help plan your schedule in advance to include buffer time and make suggestion regarding time frames for certain things to happen. TAKE OUR ADVICE. I can't tell you how many times I tell my brides that almost all wedding day schedules run late, but they don't realize how true that sentiment is until they're in the thick of it!
If you fell in love with your photographer's creative images, keep in mind that it would be best to allot a big chunk of time for this. Exploration, spontaneity, inspiration and minutes & seconds all play a factor into how your images will come out, and the type of variety you will get. A short time frame for portraits will leave you feeling frazzled on the day of, with the end result being beautiful and quality images, but not necessarily always creative. (Though it has been known to happen, that a masterpiece is created in a random thirty second time frame rushing past a pizzeria in a mad dash to get to a venue).
At the same time, it is what it is. A wedding day is mainly about the celebration of the union of the two of you, not necessarily about creating art. Unless you want it to be. 'Cause I sure do.
5. Expectation: You Love The Rustic Feel Of Barn Receptions or Outdoor Ceremonies.
Reality: Your Venue Is A Banquet Hall With No Windows.
A lot of people describe their wedding style as rustic, but the venue is anything but. That's ok! Just remember that we can't transform a location into something it's not. We are happy to be with you documenting the feels, the moods, and the events that tell the story of YOUR day, not anyone else's. And we hope you're as excited as we are to do just that!
And that's it for now, folks! For my current brides, I GOTCHU. For my future ones...get at me. ;)
Fellow Photographers: Did I miss anything? Write it in the comments!