As a photographer, the ceremony can be one of the most difficult parts of the day to photograph. Let me preface by saying I absolutely love photographing the ceremony. Obviously, that's why you're having a wedding to begin with! In order to get on with the party, you need to get married first.
But, sometimes I wish I could just pause the ceremony to tell you where to put your hands or slow you down mid processional! Since it doesn't work that way, I thought I would put together this post of 5 ways to get the best ceremony pictures! These easy steps can make all the difference when it comes to ceremony photography!
1. Walk Slowly and Look up
If you learn nothing else from this article, know this! When you're walking down the aisle, make sure you (and your wedding party) walk slowly and looks toward the altar.It always makes me sad when I'm looking through wedding photos realizing you were too concerned about tripping over your dress to have your eyes on your groom. If you feel unstable and need to see where you're going, take a couple seconds to pause and stare ahead before you continue walking. If you're holding your dress in order to not trip over your train, drop it and just enjoy the moment.
I see this most often with bridesmaids in high heels. Obviously no one wants to trip, so tell your entire party to take it slow and try to look up as much as possible. There's nothing flattering about staring at the ground. I only need a few quick glances in my general direction to make your party walking down the aisle photograph so much better!
2. Hand Your Flowers to Your Maid of Honor
As soon as you take your place at the altar, hand your flowers to your maid of honor. You want to focus on your spouse, not on the bouquet in your hand. This leads me to my next point....
3. Hold Hands
After you pass over the bouquet, hold both hands with your spouse. Occasionally, your officiant will tell you to do this, but if they don't, make sure you do it anyway. Nothing looks worse in pictures than a limp hand or two. You'll want to loosely hold hands throughout the entire ceremony, with obvious exceptions. And when you get ready for your first kiss, hold your new partner close as you kiss. Whatever you do, find some way to ensure your arms aren't just hanging there.
4. Have Your Officiant Move
This is one of my biggest pet peeves about the majority of ceremonies. You don't want your first kiss to be shared with your officiant. As much as you may love them, it's always a good idea to talk to them before hand about stepping to the side right before they tell you to kiss. Just make sure the side they choose isn't blocking the photographer. Yes, I've had this happen before. As much as I don't want them behind you while you kiss, I also really don't want them front and center.
Along the same lines, if you're going to do anything out of the ordinary...like dip your new spouse, let your photographer know so they can get in the correct position.
5. Pose for Applause
After you kiss, your guests will be clapping and sharing their excitement with you. Take a few seconds to stare out into the crowd with your hands (and heads) held high. Once again, walk back down the aisle slowly and don't look down. When you get to the end of the aisle, a lot of times I instruct my couple to kiss if there's time. That way you get the first kiss from both perspectives with all your guests cheering behind you. As I mentioned above, same goes for this kiss. Make sure you wrap your arms around each other since hanging arms are never pretty.
That wraps up 5 Ways to Get the Best Pictures from Your Ceremony. I hope this helps you be more educated and ready to get the most from your wedding photographer. If you have any thoughts, leave them in the comments!
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