We all know that planning a wedding can be a bit of a minefield so here are my top wedding photography planning tips for getting the best wedding photos of your special day.
Book A Professional
This might sound obvious, but it is incredibly important to book a professional wedding photographer. Whilst an amateur can get some good shots when everything is going perfectly to plan, a professional will get great shots even when things aren’t, such as when the weather wasn’t what you expected.
We all know that the cameras have come down a lot in price and therefore we all have an uncle Bob who’s got a digital camera or a friend who takes photos and offers to do your wedding photos for free for example. This can be very tempting as the costs of weddings do add up these days. But remember that you’re only going to have your wedding day once so hire a professional to help you preserve this incredible time in your life as your own memory fades.
Communication Is Key
This applies in the planning stage and on the day itself. Good communication between yourself and the photographer is essential to ensure that you’re on the same page and that they know the things that are important to you. Discussing these things in person or over Skype will really help you to get the best from your wedding day photography.
Trust Your Photographer
A wedding photographer’s job is to capture the day that will hopefully reflect your relationship up until that point and your future marriage that lies ahead of you. Because of this, they’ll need access, not just to your physical space but also to your emotional space. A space that you might not have ever allowed a third-party to see, let alone document. Because of this, you’ll need to trust them, trust that they know what they’re doing but most importantly trust that they’re going to respect your intimate moments.
Planning For The Best Light
Light is key to making great photos. It’s worth considering what lights is available for different parts of the day. For example, if you have a choice of rooms for where you’re going to be getting ready then choose a room that has big windows and a lot of natural light. Whilst a good photographer will be able to create beautiful, flattering artificial light too, you can’t beat natural window light. The same goes for the other key parts of the day such as the ceremony location.
You might really want to get some epic sunset portraits. If so it’s also worth considering the time of year and when the sun is going to set. Keep this in mind when you’re working out the timings of the day with your wedding coordinator so that you’re not disappointed.
Don’t Have Every Minute Planned Out
You might have an exact idea of how the day will go in your head but in my experience, it’s best to have a slightly loose timetable for certain parts of the day that allows for improvisation and coordination. For a photographer that might mean that they spend a bit more time than planned in a field with the kids and come back with a gem like this.
Forget That Your Photographer Is There
This might sound a bit strange but real emotion and moments are best captured when people are unaware. A good photographer will be able to blend into the background in order to do this but having it in the back of your mind to forget that they’re there and not turn around to smile at the camera if you do notice them will really help them to capture those beautiful candid moments shared between you and your friends and family.
Obviously, on your day, you’ll want some big group shots of everyone dressed in their best. These are simple but important photos that are at every wedding for a reason. Talk with your photographer ahead of time about what is a good number of shots to take and arrange who will be in them so it moves smoothly and quickly, leaving you with more time to enjoy with your guests. I normally suggest around 6 to 8 group photos.
Build a Relationship With Your Photographer
You’ll probably see your photographer more than most of your guests on the big day so it’s important that you get on and understand each other. Building bridges with your photographer will make the day flow better, the pictures come out better and will help you enjoy the shoots more.
Shout out to the guest who got this shot of me with Katriana & Steve at their wedding.
Don’t Be Afraid To Be Yourself
Photography is about capturing a distinct moment in time, the speed of motion in the human face and body can produce 100 different photos in a single moment. Not all of them will be good, not all of them will be flattering but some of them will be exceptional, otherwise missed gems of expression or emotion. Don’t be afraid to just be yourself.
Most Importantly – Relax And Enjoy Your Day
Make sure that you relax and enjoy it. I know that this is an obvious thing to say but we all know that sometimes things don’t go to plan. If this happens it’s super important to not let it get to you and just take it in your stride. These things will all just add to the stories and memories that you’ll make on the day.
TOP TIPS – HOW TO GET THE BEST WEDDING PHOTOS
I hope that you’ve enjoyed reading this post and that it will assist you in your wedding photography plans.
If you like what you’ve seen here and think that I could be a good fit for your wedding photography I’d love to hear about your awesome wedding plans.