Rehearsals are becoming less and less frequent in the UK, therefore, many brides find their special day to be chaotic and have no idea what is actually happening during their wedding ceremony. We meet so many couples who haven’t thought through the ceremony step by step and when the bridal party turns up on the wedding day, no-one has a clue what they are doing. Photographers are often the best people to consult because as photographers we want your ceremony to be as smooth and relaxed as possible so we can capture all the important shots moment by moment. Those of us who take wedding photography seriously want to make sure we know how the wedding ceremony is going to proceed before it begins. In this blog I will give you some tips on how to plan your ceremony so that you know exactly whats going on.
Allow plenty of time in between the ceremony and the reception. Once the ceremony is over everyone will want to have the bride and grooms attention. Make sure you know where you will be during the time immediately following the ceremony. Outdoor is always a good option as it allows the photographer to get photos of you mingling with your guests. This is also a good time for family and group photographs. However, it is essential that you set a good hour aside to disappear with your photographer. Couple photos may seem like a hassle at the time and your guests might be calling for your attention but you must have couple photos. At the end of the day, it’s the couple photos you will be displaying in your home, not necessarily the large group photos (where hardly anyone can be seen anyway). The bridal couple shots are often your nicest photos and a must have for any wedding album you create in the future.
Don’t send your bridesmaids down the aisle all at once. Your bridesmaids have gone out of their way to dress up and look pretty and that is something every photographer wants to capture. Therefore, send your bridesmaids down the aisle one by one or, at most, two by two. This will allow the photographer to take a nice photo of each bridesmaid walking down the isle. Wedding photography which captures every moment is something you will appreciate when you look through your photos down the track.
Make sure that both you and your bridesmaids walk down the aisle slowly. People want to see the bridal party walk down the aisle slowly and elegantly, not power walk down the aisle (yes, we’ve seen this happen). Friends and family of the Bride and groom are wanting to soak in the moment and enjoy this aspect of the ceremony. Furthermore, photographers need to take nice sharp photos of every person in the bridal party, especially the bride. If everyone runs down the aisle then it makes the photographers job much harder. Give family and friends time to look at the bridal party and enjoy these precious moments.
Encourage your bridal party to smile. This is especially important for wedding photography. The last thing you want are your bridesmaids walking down the aisle with a frown on their face or looking down at the ground (we’ve seen all this happen!), or even photos where the groom is smiling but the groomsman are looking very disinterested. A wedding is suppose to be a joyful celebration and a time where everybody should be happy, so just keep smiling. If the groom won’t smile then poke him in the ribs to make him laugh, that will always make a great photo.