It has been a busy summer over here in Canada, I have got to meet so many amazing and fun loving couples and share their mountain weddings.
So I have added a few more hints and tips to try and make your day and your photos go smoothly and stress free.
When things start to run behind the first and often only thing that can be cut is your photography, ceremonies and receptions have set times.
Good photography needs time and I want to give you the best I can!
Plan for things to take a bit longer than expected build in some "buffer time" I am sure you wouldn't mind having a few spare minutes to relax and have a wine!
Please ensure all important details , ie a necklace from your gran, rings, vows, invitations etc are available
The most flattering photos of you getting your make up done is during the final touches.
A clean well lit room with lots of natural light makes for the prettiest photos of you and your girls getting dressed.
I usually have the bridesmaids get dressed first so they can help the bride getting into her dress. It is also lovely if Mum is there and helps out with dressing.
To really capture some emotions and story of your day, pop a bottle of champagne with the girl, exchange gifts with your bridesmaids,
read a letter from you groom.
It is a good idea to ask your hair/makeup artist for an estimated time on how long this will take, and then add on at least 20 min as a buffer.
Please try to allow 15 minutes before we head to the ceremony, so I can get some portraits of you and your bridesmaids and family. And you can have a few minutes to relax and let it all sink in.
If the groom and the boys are interested in photos to, and near by, I can visit them too. I don't need long with the boys they are generally ready in about 20 min! I find these are often the best photos of the boys, them figuring out how to do ties and boutineers. I keep this as fun and relaxed as possible.
This is where a second shooter may be required if you are getting ready far apart.
Try and place your self so that neither of you are going to have to squint into the sun. You also don't want a spot where you have one person in bright light and the other in shade.
To make the experience better for your guests and your photos, print out your vows and hold them in your own hands while reading them to your intended.
Often a celebrant may have your vows printed in a large folder, holding them for you to read.
Instead of looking in your partners eyes and saying your carefully thought out words - you are saying them to the celebrant!
It also turns your face away for your guests and myself so we miss out on those emotions as you speak your vows.
The same applies if there is a microphone, try to hold it your self while saying your vows.
Top tip- give a list of photos to your family members prior to the wedding so they know they will be required for photos.
Having a list of must have family photos, means that after the ceremony, we can get those done nice and fast before family escape!! I have found that this is often where things get slowed down.
Give your MC or someone who knows your friends and family a copy of the photo list, and one of their duties is to help me out and find the required people for photos.
Having a microphone to use is a must. My job is to take photos, which I can't do if I am running around your venue hunting down your guests!
This will make the process a lot faster and as well as insuring all the photos you are after get done.
Also try and allow 30 min just to relax hug and greet your guests!
Photography is all about light, with beautiful light winning over a beautiful location with terrible light.
Soft backlight makes for flattering and romantic portraits- think of the light as being behind you .
These are some of my favourite photos, I often start with the bride and groom alone for them to have some quiet time together, and I really strive to catch those little gestures and looks that make every relationship special and unique.
Once you have a " basic run time" , ie what time you are having dinner, what time you would like to re join your guests. We can work out how long we spend on our fun creative photos.
I generally recommend we spend about an 1.5 - 2 hours on these photos.
( this can also depends on if our locations are near by or we need to drive to our chosen photo spots)
This amount of time gives us some wiggle room if things run a bit late during family photos or ceremony, and gives us plenty of time to get great photos. Most importantly, you are also not away for hours from your guests. Because how often do you really get to see most of them.
I will make sure you and bridal party has a fun relaxed day, while getting beautiful, natural shots! I encourage the bridal party to bring some drinks and nibbles with us on location its a busy day and by this time you may be rather hungry!
After the creative photos, I will capture your arrival and entrance into to your reception, speeches, first dance almost always fit into the 8 hours.
The more lighting you have, the better for photos! Candles, chandeliers and fairy lights.
Sneaking out of the reception for 15 min of sunset photos is always beautiful and often makes for the best photos of the day.
First look photos
"First Look " Photos are a great way to get the photos done before your ceremony. so afterwards you can relax and spend more time with your guests.
Often this is very early in the day and can be rather bright and hot, so I will find locations that will still work beautifully at that time of day. Its a great idea to allow 20 min later in the evening to capture a few more couple photos in the softer golden light.
I am heading back to Canada in a week, wow this summer has flown by again.
Thank you to all the brilliant couples who have shared their day with me.
See you in the spring.
Steff and Jason got married at the beautiful Lakes Lodege Okataina, in Rotorua.
They had planned to have here ceremony by the water, this summer so many couples have been forced to go with plan b due to all that rain!
And every single couple I have had the privilege to photograph, hasn't let it spoil their day.
They have all been full of such excitement to marry their best friend, rain or shine.
Steff and Jason, your happiness together and laughter was amazing to see.xx
Paula and Doug are such a wondeful couple, it was such a joy to share their wedding.
It was raining really hard the whole day, but these two didn't let it get them down and remained positive... Then in the late afternoon the rain stopped just in time for some romantic misty photos and they had their first dance outside surrounded by their loving family and friends. More coming soon.
so proud of her beautiful granddaughter.
Paula loves her husbands beard, she even has a name for it!
Chris and Monique were such a pleasure to photograph, they are so loving and have such a fun, playful relationship. The flowers and styling was just beautiful and the venue itself, L' orangerie, is one amazing place.
Chris and his two girls
The wedding of Ben and Laura was held at the base of Mount Maungaui in Tauranga and what a day it was. The most beautiful weather and such a day full of laughter. I had such fun with the so in love Ben and Laura and their bridal party doing the photos on the rocks around the beach. Thank you for a sharing your day with me.
I cant believe how stunning everything was at this wedding, what a great day with this amazing joy filled couple.
This brilliant couple got married in the beautiful redwoods. Their Ceremony was full of happy tears and laughs.