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5 Tips To Help Your Wedding Photographer

Weddings….They take up a lot of time, money and can be stressful to plan. I’ve been there. I remember the shock of how expensive they are and how much there was to think about. I remember how overwhelmed I became. Now, years later, I see the other side of weddings and have a new understanding and respect for the people behind the scenes. From florists, to cake decorators, and the people who sell you your gown. There are many people, some you may never even meet, who are there to help make your dreams come true on your wedding day. We will spend hours preparing and planning for your big day, making sure everything is how you envision it. But, sometimes we need a little help from you to make it happen. Here are a few ways you can help your wedding photographer get the best photos possible, and believe me, a little help goes a long way. These tips will not only make things go a lot smoother, but will make a difference in how your wedding day is captured.

1: Give Us Time - The photos you see on our websites are stunning. These are the shots that we are proud of and make us want to do what we love. But this is harder to achieve when we are rushed. There is so much more to it than showing up, pointing and clicking. When we are pressed for time, we are more likely to make a mistake or miss a photo you really want. Giving us enough time to do our job allows you to enjoy the process as well. It is as much a favour to you as it is to us.
As well, this is often the only time during the day that a bride and groom have to themselves. At one of my last weddings, after everyone had left the ceremony, and it was just us, the groom said to his new bride "I haven't even really seen you til now...Hi!"

The day goes by so quickly and will be done before you know it. So slow things down, have fun with the process and allow enough time for us to take those shots you will treasure forever.

2: Go Unplugged - In this digital age you can hardly go anywhere without seeing people on their cell phones. But wedding ceremonies is one place where they should be kept shut off and out of sight. This wasn't even an issue 10 years ago, but it is becoming a bad habit to whip out smart phones and lean into the isle, or stand up or put their hands up to take a photo. Often essential memories are being unintentionally ruined by guests who are trying to snap a pic with their smartphones and tablets. I understand that everyone gets excited for weddings and wants to take pictures. These are your family and friends who love you and they want to remember this day as well. However, these photos are not the ones that will be going on your wall, or frames, or photo albums. These are not the photos you paid a photographer to take for you. More and more couples are asking for smartphone free weddings, and wedding photographers everywhere are saying thank you!!

3: Meet With Us - Ideally I like to meet my clients at least twice before the wedding day. Speaking face to face is a great way to communicate expectations you have of each other. It cuts down on misunderstandings and helps you see if your photographer is a good fit for you. It allows you to see if you will work well together and if everyone is comfortable with each other. The more comfortable you are with your photographer the better your photos will turn out. It will also make the day more enjoyable for you. There have been several times when I have left a wedding feeling like I have a new friend, and it’s because we got to know each other and built a relationship before the wedding day. So please take the time to meet with us. We would love to get to know you.

4: Forget Pinterest - I love Pinterest and I admit, I spend way too much time on it for my own good. I think it is a great way to help plan a wedding. From do it yourself decorations, to tips on saving money, Pinterest is a good tool to use. However, when it comes to photography, too many people find a pose they love and must have, and then are disappointed with the outcome when they try to recreate that pose. This is because it is a re-creation. The lighting, the dress, the flowers, the location, are all different in that photo. And for that photo on Pinterest, it all came together naturally and worked. But it may not always work for everyone. Most photographers do not mind trying out an idea you have found online, but please do not give them hundreds of Pinterest ideas to duplicate. And also, please don’t put all your hopes and dreams on a particular photo. Trust that your photographer has a keen eye and the creativity to give you breathtaking images. When trying to re-create something someone else has done, chances are both you and your photographer will be disappointed with the outcome. After all, we are there to capture real life moments that you and your loved ones are creating. Not someone elses moments that have already been photographed.

5: Do Not Rely On Editing: Photoshop is a wonderful tool photographers use to enhance, touch up, and crop their images. Most photographers will do quick edits, like taking out blemishes and adjusting the lighting and contrast. However, there is too much dependence on photoshop these days and there is a huge misconception of what we actually use it for. The phrase “We can fix that in photoshop” is used way too often by both wedding couples and photographers. I have learned the hard way to get the photo right in camera and avoid photoshop to “fix” any little problems. Certain seemingly quick fixes actually take a lot of time, are hard to do well and will delay the editing process which will leave you waiting for your images longer than expected. 

Your photos are an investment. They are one of the few things from your wedding day that will last a lifetime. Long after the cake is eaten, the flowers wilt and the music has faded, your photos will be a window to one of the most memorable days of your life. And though you have trusted us to capture each detail, we need a little help from you to do it right! When all is said and done the best way to help your photographer is to have fun on your wedding day. You have spent months planning it, so enjoy it. This, more than anything, ensures that you will get amazing photos!