Every couple has to decide on the big question: To see or not to see one another before the ceremony?
It is a big decision but I highly recommend it to my couples! When Brett and I got married over six years ago, we chose not to see one another and now we both agree if we had it to do over again, we would most definitely do a first look. Yes, I smiled the whole way down the aisle; so much that my face hurt when I reached the altar. But when I finally reached Brett we couldn’t even speak to one another. Our ceremony was sweet and lovely and everything I hoped for but once it was over, we rushed immediately into photos with our families, wedding party, and finally the two of us. Then we went into our reception where we were greeted by people all night. We finally got into the car after a fun, yet busy day and just looked at each other. It hit me that I hadn’t really seen Brett all day and it was OUR wedding day. I immediately regretted our decision of not seeing one another.
So, if you’re in the fence about doing a first look, check out the positives of doing a first look:
1. You get an intimate moment together. You look gorgeous on your wedding day and when you walk down the aisle and reach him at the front, he can’t tell you how beautiful you look. In fact, he can’t even really speak to you until the ceremony is over. He can tell you how gorgeous you are in about 20-40 minutes, but it’s not the same as the initial first look.
2. You get to spend your wedding day together! Your first look will probably be the only time you’re alone together for the entire day. Having that moment and experiencing the emotions up front allows you to move into your photos feeling calm and relaxed, allowing for romantic and sweet photos!
3. You’re investing a lot into your wedding photography and with a first look you get 40-50% more photos of the two of you. These photos are the most important ones of the day and most likely the you will fill your home with. Rushing through these is just no fun for anybody!
4. The nerves disappear. Most of the time, the groom especially is feeling the nerves because he has never experienced a day like this before and more importantly, he wants to see you so he can breathe again. It amazes me each time I see a couple immediately relax once they’re in each other’s arms!
5. No one is waiting on us. I always schedule the first look after the bride is dressed and ready to go. She is at her freshest point, feeling beautiful and excited. I allow a big chunk of time following the first look for the bride and groom portraits, even allowing your wedding party to keep getting ready if necessary. Therefore, no one is waiting on us…especially your guests. If we have to do photos after the ceremony, it takes AT LEAST an hour. Your guests have to go to the reception and smell the food while they wait on us to arrive. Some even leave if their not patient enough!
6. We won’t run out of light. This is especially important for those fall and winter brides. If you’re having a late afternoon/early evening ceremony, it is dark afterwards. This means we don’t have any natural light to work with. Being a natural light photographer, this is extremely important.
I loved Patrick & Erin’s big smiles when they embraced!
Ike & Kelly’s first look was moved inside due to rain, but it was still great!