This post is Part 9: Importance of First Look of the “What I learned in my first year” series.
Click on the links if you would like to read more parts:
Part 1:”The Investments”
Part 2: “Getting Published”
Part 3: "Facebook Contests"
Part 4: "Choosing a Second Shooter"
Pt. 5 Wedding Timelines
Pt. 6 How to avoid Drama in the business
Part 7: Wedding Attire -Style vs. Comfort
Part 8: Finding your shooting style
Oh gosh there’s so much I can say about having a First Look (also known as seeing each other before your ceremony).
Did you know that not seeing your groom before the ceremony is an old tradition, but not a very romantic one! It originated from arranged marriages... they were not allowed to see each other until the ceremony because they wouldn't have a chance to back out once they saw eachother. This was usually the first time they were meeting, that's why they covered the bride with a veil to hide her until the big "I Do!"
Welp times have definitely changed and I don't think we get many runners since marriage is a mutual choice now! So I think we should ditch this tragic tradition and make more time for romantic moments!
Your wedding day is full of craziness with people running around trying to get everything perfect for the big moments. You go through your whole day without a second for you and your fiancé to be alone and breathe it all in! This is why I feel that making time before your ceremony is a perfect way to allow you both to just soak up the moment of what brought you two lovebirds here together in the first place, before all the madness of the day begins! And the photos that we get to capture are the most raw emotions you can get! It's wonderful!
This can also help to calm your nerves when the time comes to walk down the aisle! Since you already experienced that special moment with your love, all the stress seems to go away! Your able to soak it all in and pay attention to the details that you spent forever planning and ENJOY the ceremony! Be in the moment! It won't be just a blur!
Another reason why first looks are awesome is we get to bust out your wedding party portraits before the ceremony while everyone is still in the mood. It seems like after the ceremony everyone wants to go mingle & enjoy themselves with a cocktail, so it's hard to gather them back up, which can waste alot of time and to keep their attention is another challenge.
Another important factor is lighting! If you plan a gorgeous sunset ceremony your not leaving enough time to get some beautiful sunset portraits because by the time your ceremony is over the sun has gone down. And fun group shots are just not the same in the dark! So a "first look" allows you to get all the portraits done before so you have plenty of light, and then your able to enjoy your sunset ceremony if that's what you wanted.
If after reading all this and your still not convinced then no worries, as long as you plan your wedding earlier in the day to allow at least 2 hours of daylight after the ceremony for all your portraits :) I've also seen a cute idea where the couple decided not to see one another but they wanted to give each other gifts so they exchanged gifts with a wall or tree hiding them. It was a cute way to capture some sweet moments with you together, but not! That's what I call working with whatcha got!
Here's some cute photos from a First Look experience :)
I'M JANELLE MARINA
Wife, Mama Shark, + Photographer.
Most days, you'll find me in mismatched socks and a top knot, working behind my computer with a smile on my face, listening to Zac Brown Band and R&B
--or, dancing in the kitchen with my 3 littles and hunka husband, seeing who could come up with the coolest dance moves. I'm a wedding photographer, West Elm lover, aspiring advocate for our buddies with special needs, and a Certified Dreamer since 1986. We live in a cozy city in Southern California and are always up for a good adventure. I enjoy telling stories with my camera, grubbing on spicy food, and solving the latest Dateline case.