We haven't done a Things I Wish I Knew About When I Got Hitched in a while, but we just finished a stretch of 9 weddings in 8 weeks and noticed something that we wanted to pass on to you: We love First Looks. So you meet with your photographer, and they ask you if you guys are wanting to do a First Sight/First Look. Basically, are you interested in seeing each other before the wedding? And you're a little on the fence on whether or not you want to do it. So as photographers let us share a couple reasons why we love them:
1. They Are Emotional
Often people are worried that doing a First Sight will take away the special moment of walking down the aisle. But we have found that often the First Looks are even more emotional than opening the church doors and seeing each other because it's just the two of you (well...and us off to the side), and you can express to each other all the feelings you are having, give each other a kiss if you want, just enjoy a moment of quiet and intimacy in a day filled with all hustle and bustle. Often the First Look is the only time the whole day that you get to be alone with each other.
2. Calms the Nerves
Ryan and I often talk about how if we did it over again we would do a First Look. For many of the reasons that we are listing in this post, but probably the most important to me would be that we see such a noticeable difference in the demeanor of our Brides and Grooms. You have spent months planning the details of your wedding day together and it's hard to put that To Do list out of your mind. But almost every time we do a First Look I watch all the stress of the day melt off my brides when they get held by their grooms. It's like all of the tasks and questions and wonders of the day that are flying around in her head stop mid-air when she sees her groom. It brings a peace over her like all the details don't matter anymore.
3. More Creative Photos
This one might take you aback a bit, but it's true. When we do a First Look we typically will spend about two hours before the wedding getting shots of you and the bridal party as well as those boring family pictures. This gives us time after the wedding to take no more than an hour so that you can get to and enjoy your reception quicker. The extra hour allows us to really take advantage of all the great spots at your venue, especially if the ceremony location differs from the reception. This also gives you some variety in backgrounds for your wedding collection that we might not have time to do after the wedding if a majority of the photos were not taken before the wedding. And if you are doing an evening wedding during the winter months, it also allows you to have photos during the natural light hours which is the most flattering.
4. They Help You to Enjoy Your Guests and Reception More
Doing the First Look let's us do most if not all of the photos before the wedding, therefore letting you join your reception to talk, dance, and have fun with your loved ones who may have traveled to celebrate your day with you.
5. They Make Your Photographer Happy
I mean, just being honest here, doing a First Look really helps us out. I tend to be a stresser in rushed situations. Thankfully Ryan is as calm as a cucumber so we balance out well. But I do my best work when I am not rushed, and having a little bit of time to explore and think helps me to do my best work. Doing the photos beforehand when we aren't on a tight schedule allows me to take photos until I KNOW I've gotten it just right and I can walk away at the end of the night confident that I have provided you with the best version of me possible.
But with all of that said, we know that your day isn't about the photos. It's about the commitment that the two of you are making to each other. It's your wedding, so you do what you want! We respect the choices that you make and want you to be comfortable and confident in your decisions for the day you say 'I Do.'