In the first part of this article I gave a few tips on how to get better wedding photographs during the preparation stages leading up to the wedding ceremony.
Part 2 will focus on the rest of the day. I did consider an article for each part of the day, but it kind of goes against my philosophy of good documentary photography in general. The tips in part one were just practical things that are quite easy to implement at a time of the day when you have a little more time to think about these things.
So following on, and after a lot of thought, the best advice I can give for getting the best photographs of your wedding is this: Enjoy the occasion, take it all in, laugh, cry and dance like no one’s watching. Photographers love to capture emotion and reaction. Personally I think these photographs are the holy grail of all photographs. They go a little deeper and mean a lot more to couples who want to remember their wedding as it actually was. And good documentary photography also takes a lot more skill and experience to create. From my point of view there’s nothing better than photographing people who show their emotions. But of course there are other factors that contribute to a good photograph and there are a few things that you might want to think about during the planning stage of the wedding.
Timing for photographs
If you would like family formal portraits and a few couple portraits, it’s worth making sure there’s enough time in the day to do this. You really don’t want to be rushing or panicking about time on your wedding day. Speak to your venue and photographer, take travel time into account and work with your photographer to create a list of group photographs that covers all of the important people but won’t take very long.
Weather and expectations
Sometimes it rain (but don’t worry!). Whatever date your big day is on you can’t predict the weather. Bear this in mind and be aware that if it rains you might not be able to get the outdoor photographs that you have in your head. But good photographers will always have a contingency plan. When I’m forced to work indoors because of the weather I really want to make something special for the couple. Not that it’s my fault it rained, but I don’t want anyone to ever be disappointed because of the weather. So if there’s something I can do to make a difference, then that’s what I do. Here are a few images taken inside whilst the heavens opened. Whatever happens, the most important thing is that you get married and have a good time. If it rains it rains.
There’s not really much more I want to say on this. The reason being that the more you think about the photographs, the less you can be in the moment and enjoy the occasion. Trust your photographer to get the very best images out of any situation, whatever the background and whatever the lighting and concentrate on enjoying the day. The more you can do this the more your photographs will be a true representation of the wedding and will be a better reminder of the real emotion of the day.