Choosing a photographer for your wedding is one of the biggest (and most expensive) decisions you’ll make planning your wedding. Look for these qualities to ensure you choose a good one!
Wedding “Do-Not’s”: Photography
Now I know that we have shown you a TON of really ridiculous wedding photos before (if you haven’t seen them, go to When Wedding Photos Go Wrong and Again… you’ll laugh your self to tears) but though they can teach you some very valuable lessons on photos in general, that is not really what I want to address here today. I want to talk to you more about the general in’s and out’s of taking wedding photos. I have been married before and though my photographer did a very nice job, looking back I would have done things differently and been much more specific on what I did and did not want. So here we go!
Do Not Choose the Wrong Photographer. Obviously, no one wants to do that. But sometimes it’s hard because you have a limited budget or someone recommends a friend who’s work seems nice. Or you simply don’t know what you are getting. In order to avoid this tragedy (and trust me it will be tragic if you photos turn out horrendous and you have nothing to remember the day) I highly recommend a few things: 1) If the photos are what is most important to you about your wedding, then plan on spending a good chunk of change on an amazing photographer. Even if you don’t have the best location, an awesome photographer can shine anywhere. 2) Before choosing someone, look at their work very extensively. Look at several weddings they have done. See what kind of memories they capture and whether or not they are candid or simply posed. Let’s just say I wish I had more candid moments. And also be aware of their style. If your wedding is modern, then a photographer with a more modern style will be best and if you are going rustic, you will want someone who has a good sense of the simple, everyday things. 3) Meet with them first. You don’t have to book them for the job before meeting with them. Ask them tons of questions about how they take pictures, if there will be more than one of them and how long they will stay (some photographers have a time limit or will charge more). And if they are willing, meet them at your wedding location. This way you can discuss where you will want posed photos and see what kind of creative ideas they have. Seriously, I could go on and on about choosing a photographer that maybe I should just write a post about that! I think I will. Stay tuned……
Do Not Allow Anyone to Rush Your Posed Photo Session. I know that many times at weddings people get ancy during the cocktail hour when the bride and groom (and possibly family) take too long with their posed shots. I say, let your guests wait. I was rushed by my locations coordinator which them caused me to not think about some of the photos I wanted taken. These are your memories, take your time.
Do Not Decide What Photos You Want On the Spot. You must plan ahead. I can not stress this enough. Yes, if your photographer has been to the location they will already have ideas of the best places for some shots, however if there are specific people or places you want shots of, make a list ahead of time and give it to your photographer. Your mind will be on so many things on this day that you will not remember to take a picture with Great Aunt Mildred or the fountain on the other side of the building if it is not written down or previously discussed with your photographer. Trust me, there were a few incredible spots Movie Star and I wanted to take pictures at and I just planned on saying something the day of which backfired. I was so consumed with having just been married and making sure I got all my family photos in that the locations skipped right on through my mind. Plus, you will constantly be told where to go and what to do all day that if you plan on going with the flow….. it won’t happen.
Do Not Take Awkward Photos. I don’t know what else I can say about this but take a look at some of the shots at Awkward Family Photos and DO NOT DO THAT. Unless you have a crazy sense of humor and are taking them for laughs down the road, try to avoid awkwardness. I suggest having a friend or family member that you trust standing behind the photographer making sure the shot you are taking doesn’t look too bizarre or have one thing strangely out of place. Obviously, let your photographer know you will have someone there just to catch anything they may not see. But really, if you have a good photographer, this won’t happen. They know what they are doing. *My hubby and I are actors and wanted to have our photo on the entry table look like a bad, white trash moment caught on camera because we thought it would be funny and a fun “scene” to play out, but in the end it would have just been odd, out of place and ticked my mother off.
Do Not Let Your Photographer Take a Picture You Think Is Weird. If you are in an uncomfortable stance, being held by your new spouse strangely or unnaturally stop and tell them you’d like to not take shots like this. I know this might seem like it doesn’t happen, but if you are put into a position like any of the shots above, MOVE ON!
Do Not Let Your Photographer Do Weird Things TO Your Photos. Discuss any retouching you want your photographer to do and give them as much artistic freedom as you are comfortable with. Some will just touch up skin, hairs in the way or brighten eyes. That’s cool and totally worth it. However, there are some who like to make the photos like artwork and I love that too. Just make sure they don’t plan on photoshopping something odd into your photo or putting two shots together that just look creepy. Take some of the shots above as examples (they are older shots, but there are still people out there who do this)
Read more at inspiringpretty.com
Lastly, Do Not Let Anyone Tell You That You Need to Spend More on a Photographer. When Bonnie got married, the photos where not the most important thing to her. Yes she and her husband wanted photos taken (as everyone does) but they weren’t looking for anything artsy fartsy or super professional. What they simply wanted was someone with a professional camera to snap some memories that they could use to remember their day. So they went with a girl fresh out of school who was trying to get her business going. And the photos turned out really nice. It was better for them to spend money on decorations or the food. To each their own!
To have a photo booth or not? Here’s what you’ll missing out on if you don’t!
Now we’re moving to a fun part of the wedding. Don’t worry, it doesn’t involve a lot effort that you hope your guests will notice. It’s a simple and fun detail that all of your guests can enjoy. I’m talking about a photo booth. It’s an increasing trend becoming more and more popular across all types of weddings. If you are considering one, be aware that there are many different ways to you do it. Here I hope to help you discover some of those.
The most common photo booth at a wedding is a normal photo booth: a small booth with a curtain that you step inside for a printout of a few snapshots. This can be good if you want the least amount of hassle possible and are looking for an activity guests can do on their own. This is a splendid idea if you want the guests to leave you their own personal keepsake for your wedding and if you want them to have their own unique momento as well. This is because the traditional photo booth automatically prints two copies of the adorable photo strips. Also, if you want strips, this is the only option that allows for that.
Another cheaper and more homey possibility is using polaroid cameras. Some people see the use of polaroids as cheap while others see it as down to earth. In the end though, it’s just about fun and comfort for your guests. Even at an upscale wedding, it’s great fun to hand out polaroid cameras to your guests and see what sweet and whacky pictures they can take at your wedding. Polaroids are a great combination of disposable cameras and a photo booth. They allow your guests to take pictures anywhere and of anything like a disposable camera, but like a photo booth, allow them to take a photo home and leave one for you to remember them by. Polaroids haven’t been used in the past, because they haven’t been seen as elegant, but as the trend of of comfort and simplicity emerges, their use is becoming stylish.
The last choice is to have a photographer set up a ‘photo booth’. This is wide open for your imagination :-) The booth could simply be a sheet background, a separate room, an area outside or anything else you can think of. A cute and original idea is to hang a picture frame from a tree branch, ceiling or something similar and have guests pose inside it. This is a fun idea, because it allows guests to have somewhat of a personal photo shoot. Creativity and silliness will abound and you and your guests will have pictures to last a lifetime. The downside of this option is that it can be a bit pricey, as the photographer will probably be working for the entirety of the reception. Depending on your personality and motif though, it could be just the touch you’re looking for.
Having a photo booth is cool, but it can become bland almost like school pictures. To spice it up a bit, you can add a few props for your guests to play with. The most basic and versatile ones are wigs, hats, glasses and boas. I recommend having at least two of each and make them very contrasting. For example, buy a top hat and a straw hat or a cute blonde wig and a clown wig. If you want to add more, you might want to consider mustaches, a monocle and the always cool groucho glasses. For true originality, leave a chalkboard for your guests to write messages to show off in their photos. And for an artsy touch, have various picture frames lying around for people to work with in their poses.
No matter what, using a photo booth is guaranteed to add to the wedding festivities. Have a blast and be sure to leave many keepsakes for you and your guests to always remember your big day.
click to see more of these pretty photos!
What can I say about this one? You’ve already seen what a difference the right photographer can make and the difference a bad photographer can make, not just once, but twice and thrice times. Photography has changed vastly not just over the decades, but in recent years. Rather than articulating it, just look at the photos and see the beauty.