I have been so blessed to have worked with some truly talented photographers in my years of event planning. In this post, I’d like to discuss how to make photographing your day easier for everyone.
I’d like to talk about YOUR photographer. I hope that you have selected a true professional. Someone who not only has the style you and your partner love, but also years of knowledge and experience. Event photography doesn’t just start and stop with images. Your photographer wears multiple hats that many people don’t see.
Here are a few notes to remember on your wedding day and you should be easy cruising with your artist.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER IS A VISUAL AND TECHNICAL ARTIST, FOLLOW HIS/HER ADVICE: It takes years, workshops, trials and errors for your photographer to achieve his/her style, as well as understanding how to capture the perfect light. Although your photographer likely has editing done, to get beautiful photographs, well – you’d need to have a beautiful shot to begin with. Your photographer may ask for you to do some “weird” stuff while shooting, “drop your shoulders”, “chin up, look to your left!”,” drop your bouquet”, “rotate your shoulder”, “touch noses” – but these are requests to achieve a beautiful image and as odd as these may sound, there are reasons for them. Your body and faces need to be positioned a certain way to look the best on camera, follow your photographer’s advice and you’ll look like a model in no time!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER SHOULD NOT COMPETE WITH PHONES: Your ceremony and so many sub-events during your wedding are all sacred times. We’ve all seen photos online of guests with their cell phones out during the processional. Photographers should not have to compete for a shot with your guests. When I write “compete” I mean that in a sense that they should not have to crop people out, ask guests to put their device down, or really – just have their shot ruined because guests must absolutely share on their social media that they are at your wedding. For the sake of your photos, please consider asking your guests to unplug during important times of your wedding day.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER SHOULD NOT BE A “PEOPLE WRANGLER”: I always advice my clients to try and keep the photo list short at cocktail hour, then ask the photographer to take candid photos with other loved guests during the evening. If you have a list of people you’d like to take photos with during cocktail hour, you should make sure they are aware that they will be needed for photographs and should be ready at a set location after the ceremony. Otherwise, when your guests disperse to get their beverages and hors d’ oeuvres, they will need to be wrangled and this takes up precious time! You should not leave it up to your photographer, his/her assistant or your coordinator to wrangle guests. It truly is your responsibility to notify your guests beforehand that they are needed and should be at arm’s length.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER MAY “BARK” ORDERS: It sounds harsh, doesn’t it? Have you ever tried to tell a large group of very jovial bridesmaids and groomsmen, flower girls, ringer bearers, parents, grandparents, aunts and uncles to stand still or move around like chess pawns to get everyone into a photograph within 5 minutes? This is what your photographer may have to do, so don’t be surprised if he/she steps up “with authority” to get people in line. Honestly, when I see a photographer step up and tell people what to do, I see it as a sign of a truly experienced individual who understands his/her time restraints to get the shot the will make YOU happy. THE BEST THING TO DO is not only to have your party ready, but to let them know at the rehearsal dinner or any time before the wedding that your amazing photographer will need to dictate the shoot, and everyone should be ready to move as the photographer requests. Remember, the sooner the photographer gets his/her shots, the sooner everyone can get their beer, wine and cheese!
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER SHOULD NOT DESERVE DISRESPECT: I hope that your bridal party is awesome and won’t throw rude comments to your photographer or his/her assistant. The sad case is, I have seen it or heard of these incidents happen. Sometimes, alcohol is involved. Sometimes, that jerk friend your significant other seems to still hang out with is the culprit. Please keep in mind that just because everyone is having a great time and photographers are indeed your vendor, there’s no need to be rude at any time.
YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER NEEDS TO EAT: Even if your photographer (and every wedding vendor that is present for a long time at your wedding for that matter) does not request for a meal on his/her contract, you should include them in your caterer’s meal count. A fed vendor that has time to re-energize from a whole day of running around will be fit to run around even more, especially when it comes time to take those fabulous sunset photos. Try to schedule their meal during a time when there are no toasts or big happenings, otherwise they will only have a few minutes to eat-and-run.
With all of what has been written, above all else - HAVE FUN with your photographer. The more relaxed you are, the more you'll shine in your photos!
Bride Photograph Copyright: Kiel Rucker Photography
Couple and Bridal Party Photographs: Copyright Yvonne Goll Photography