5 tips for successful wedding photos
written by Terence Baelen, wedding photographer
You probably want to organize an exceptional wedding! Better yet, you want to keep wonderful memories of it. So here are 5 tips to help you make your wedding photos a success.
TIP #1: Hire a professional wedding photographer
Does that sound silly to you? Yet, for their wedding photos, many brides and grooms still rely on their family or friends. Please hire a professional wedding photographer! Set aside a portion of your budget for wedding photos. Believe me, if you choose the right provider, you won’t regret it in the future. Lately, I’ve heard some brides and grooms regret their decision to go without a professional wedding photographer. They wanted to save money by relying on images of their loved ones. Today, the outcome is bitter. They regret not keeping beautiful wedding pictures. So remember: professional photographs will be your memories of tomorrow.
TIP #2: Choose a wedding photographer to your liking
Again, this may seem obvious. However, it is important to choose a photographer because you like his wedding photos. You even have to walk at first sight! Of course, the budget you set is a factor in your choice. However, don’t choose a wedding photographer just for the price! Above all, make your tastes and feelings work for you. This way, you reduce the risk of disappointment and your wedding photos will delight you! I have written a guide to help you choose your wedding photographer. Do not hesitate to read it if you are still in the research stage.
TIP #3: Organize your wedding… and your wedding photos!
Organising your wedding can be long, tedious and time-consuming. Indeed, there are hundreds of things to think about and plan for. Be as methodical as possible. To organize, you have to… get organized! So write down your wedding planning. Classify and detail everything! This will allow you to have clear ideas and to follow your progress step by step. But what is the link with your wedding photos? In fact, tidying up will free up your time and allow you to organize the photo part. But don’t worry, it’s not that complicated!
Make a list of the groups to be photographed and delegate
Many brides and grooms wish to do the traditional “group photos” with their loved ones. I invite you to make a list of the groups to be photographed. Limit the number of groups. About fifteen can be sufficient. You can plan large groups, or even the classic general photo. Gather the families together. Avoid having the same guests twice. Optimize so that this moment doesn’t take more than 30 minutes. This is not usually the bride and groom’s favourite part of the day. Finally, for the wedding day, plan for someone who can call the groups with his or her strong and intelligible voice. This way, the organization will be more fluid, your guests won’t be bored… and neither will you!
On D-day, you will obviously have something else to think about than the comfort of your photographer! But before your wedding, try to think about photography! For example, ask yourself these few questions. In which room am I going to have my make-up done? Can I be close to a natural light source, such as a large window or bay window? Is it possible for me to arrange this room so that the decor is photogenic? As far as time permits, make room and clear out anything that might not be aesthetically pleasing to the image. Favour large, bright rooms where all service providers can work without being disturbed.
Contact your photographer
This is part of the organization of your wedding: communicate regularly with your photographer. Keep him/her informed of any changes in the program. Connect with. Ask for advice. In short, talk to. Personally, I try to establish a friendly and relaxed contact with the bride and groom, and to guide them in the organization of the photo part of their wedding. In fact, if you chose me, I would take you to this article first. Then, I would give you some practical advice to make everything go as smoothly as possible. As in many fields, communication is a key to success.
TIP #4: Take your couple photos during golden hour
It’s a personal advice I give to the bride and groom who choose me. Whenever possible, try to schedule the couple’s photo session later in the afternoon. The best time for me is one hour (or even 1h30) before sunset. Golden hour photos (in French: lumière dorée) have become a trademark of my wedding reports. This light, prized by many photographers, offers a soft and subdued lighting for romantic wedding photos. But be careful not to wait until the sun has already set!
TIP #5: Let go and trust the photographer!
Since you’ve already applied the previous four tips, I’ll give you the last one. This is the key tip in this article for successful wedding photos. Let go and enjoy your day! Indeed, you have chosen a professional photographer. You love his work. You have communicated regularly with him. Your lists are ready. You have made space in the room where your preparations will take place. Now it’s up to the photographer to work. Trust him, take a deep breath, and enjoy every moment!