As a candid wedding photographer, I’ve attended and captured a whole lotta weddings in my time (I’m not that old, just busy!) so I'd like to think I know a thing or two, or FIVE, about what you need to communicate with your wedding photographer ahead of the big day. Keep reading for an insight into my world and discover my top wedding photography tips!
No, not a vague breakdown, not a half-arsed list on the back of an envelope, I want to know EVERYTHING. Even if you think it’s insignificant or not relevant, I really do want to know every single detail. If you want a fun-filled wedding day with love, laughter and memorable moments to look back on in years to come then don’t keep your photographer in the dark about anything cause I want to be all over it! Even if it means staying a bit later, chucking some wellies on or hollering at your stubborn uncle to get a move on, if I know what to expect I can prepare for it and give you a helping hand too. I’m not referred to as a photographer, a friend and an organiser for nothing y’know! So help a gal out and share all the dreamy details with me, ASAP!
One of the most poignant moments in a wedding, and one which often helps to set the tone of the day, is the exchanging of gifts. This usually happens on the wedding morning so if you’re planning on doing this at some point, let us photographers know! If the bride is giving gifts to her bridesmaids in one location and the groom has a gift for his best men in another then it takes a bit of logistical magic to make sure everything is covered and captured in time. But that’s not all - then there’s the bride and groom’s gift to each other, and sometimes the bride or groom might like to give something to their parents on the wedding morning too. SEE - this could turn out to be a logistical nightmare if it’s not planned and scheduled in advance. If your photographer doesn’t have a second shooter with them on the day then give them a heads-up about the wedding morning plan - they will thank you AND you’ll get all of these gorgeous heartfelt moments frozen in time.
This isn’t a given, and this also isn’t a signal to hurriedly create a mega surprise for the king or queen in your life, but… if you are, keep us in the loop. Following on from the previous point, we just need to know where and when and we can make sure we’re there to capture the magic. Whether that’s singing waiters performing your other half’s fave 90s bangers, the surprise arrival of your beloved pet, or an impromptu speech or rap (you get the idea)... let us know in advance and we’ll be there… with bells on!
Families are complicated, right? I know that, you know that. And just because it’s a picture-perfect wedding day doesn’t mean we can ignore (or expect others to ignore) any awkward relationships that might need to be handled sensitively throughout the day. Now, I’m certainly not shy when it comes to telling your guests where to stand, who to look at or what to do, but the last thing I want to do is make anyone feel uncomfortable or unsafe so the more information I have on your guests, the better. I’ll always ask for a list of key people in your wedding party and nail down which group shots you want covered on the day, but if your mum is a control freak, or your siblings have had a barney and could kick off at any minute then tell me - they’re NOT the photos you want in your wedding album so let’s avoid and diffuse any awkward situation together!
Weddings are such a beautiful, personal event, a belter of a milestone in someone’s life and it’s only natural that you would want your photographer to capture your unique story, including every lush detail documented for you to revisit time and time again. If there are any important details that may not be seen or obvious to your photographer, let them know in advance. I’ve photographed heirloom jewellery before, home-grown flowers, hand-embroidered napkins and silly but sentimental socks. It doesn’t matter how small these details may seem, they are yours, and together they make up your unique, epic love story. So always, ALWAYS communicate these little details with your wedding photographer beforehand.