Over the years I have come to realise, for couples this is the hardest part of the wedding. I have had a few very nervous grooms appear at the pre-wedding shoot and the odd shaky bride too. I realise this may be the first time they have been photographed by a professional photographer and have no idea what to expect! Which is totally understandable.
When you first decide to book me as your wedding photographer you will see my package includes a pre-wedding shoot. As well as you getting some nice pictures to hang on your walls, there is a very important reason for it all. My main aim is to meet you both and calm the initial nerves of being photographed! Yes it is as simple as that. Sometimes this is actually the first time we all get together, as I may only meet the bride at the initial meeting, so it is great for us all to chat and get to know each other before the big day.
I try to encourage you as a couple to decide on somewhere that is meaningful to you to have your photos taken, a lot of couples decide on the location of the actual proposal and others decide to stay at home, on a farm or near hand. This just means you can look back at the photos and they have more meaning behind them and tell your story to other a little better. If you can not think of anywhere then I can give some suggestions to where we could go depending on your preference.
No joke, I tell this to every couple...it is a walk, a chat and I take a few photos along the way! It is that simple and by the end, I usually get the reply, 'It wasn't want I was expecting!' or 'It wasn't that bad!'
I like to think of myself as easy to get on with, I can talk the leg off a stool if I wanted to, so there are no awkward silences and there are always a few giggles along the way. We can get the wellies on and skip through fields, I honestly don't mind. Location is up to you!
The most popular question is, what do we wear?
I always respond with, something you are comfortable in and you would wear casually. There is absolutely no point in going to the beach in high heals unless you are going to kick the off at some stage! If you are comfortable in your clothes then you will look comfortable in your photos. Certainly feel free to compliment your surroundings and each other, this keeps the images consistent and blends it all together as a story, but no need to go out and buy a new outfit! Same goes for hair and make up, no need unless you want to get your make-up and hair trial done before hand, then you are all dolled up for the shoot.
What do we do?
There are no rights and wrongs, you just do you! I prompt you along the way, if it is just to walk and hold hands, or to hug and come close to each other, then you do it as you would normally.
Majority of the time you won't be looking at the camera as it is all about you as a couple. If I want you to look at me I will let you know. But don't expect too many of those photos. I'm not a 'Look at me and say cheese kinda photographer!' Yes, I will tell you to get into certain poses as I love them and they are my style but you will both relax into the pose as if you were there without out me walking around you with a camera.
I get close and far away so don't get scared if one minute I am there and the next I have run away to get a wide shot to compliment the close up shot.
Do I need to get my nails done?
This is asked a lot, and the answer is no. Unless you do and that it is part of your everyday! Yes, I will be doing some close ups of your engagement ring, on and off you, so if you wan to paint your nails then work away.
Also some jewellers will clean your engagement ring for free (if you purchased it with them) so it is worth a wee ask before your shoot or wedding day so it is all nice and sparkly for the photos!
When do we do the photo shoot?
This is entirely up to you. Most couples are booking their wedding a year to two years in advance, so anytime in between paying your deposit and a few weeks before the wedding.
I advise to do it in a different season to the season you are getting married in for variety, but that is your choice. I try to avoid weekends in my busy summer season as I will more than likely have wedding on, therefore evenings are good with lovely summer sunsets so we have plenty of time on our side.
What if it rains?
As I say to everyone, you can't avoid it if it happens on your wedding day, so a practice is always good!
If you look closely at the first engagement shoot and the one below, they both got caught in the rain and sometimes they just turn out the best photos and end up on the wall.
Again it is telling your story so don't worry about it...embrace the rain!
I hope this helped anyone who is a little anxious about the pre-wedding shoot. If you have any worries or questions about it or my wedding packages please contact me and I will be happy to help.