If you haven't yet joined the first looks over no first looks club yet, get ready because you're about to! As a photographer, I've witnessed every combination of flow of events at weddings - and some well, just run smoother than others. Now, your wedding is about you and your partner, and how you want your day to reflect your story and I'm always going to support that. But if you ask my opinion? I almost always think you should do a first look on the day of your wedding. Let me tell you why...
Why I Love First Looks
To keep things simple, first looks have too many advantages to ignore. They create so much breathing room on your wedding day, relieve so much pressure, and create the most candid photos you're going to love. So here's why I love first looks, and why I think you will too.
- With a first look, you'll actually get more time to yourself on your wedding day. All of your portraits, family formals, and wedding party pictures will be scheduled before the ceremony. That leaves you the entire night to kick back and enjoy yourself!
- Time. It's as simple as that! I schedule a 1-hour break between photos and the start of the ceremony. That way we have flexibility like if a family member is running late, or the weather throws an unexpected wrench in the plans - we know we'll still have time to capture everything.
- Less pressure! This is a really big factor. I tell all my couples, that every single stress, worry, or nerve completely melts away the moment you see your partner on your wedding day. If you save that for the aisle? Well, that's a lot of pressure to hang onto until you're in front of a lot of people staring right at you. With a first look, it's just you two and you can react naturally without worrying about being in front of everyone!
- With the ease of pressure, you're going to get dreamy, candid photos of you and your partner the first time you see each other. You don't want to be tense, holding back tears, just wanting to kiss your partner as soon as you see them all while your family members stare at you. With no one else around, you'll be free to be yourself which will create the most natural-looking photos that reflect your personalities as a couple SO MUCH better!
My First Look Tips
First looks are great because it gives you the opportunity to do what you want with that time. Typically I schedule 1 hour to do the first look immediately followed by your portraits. During that time, it's up to you where we go and what we do! So here are some of my favorite ways to make the most of your first look...
- Do them alone. As much as I want your bestie to be able to make a really cute TikTok of your first look for you...you should do your first look alone. I'm talking you, your partner, and me - that's it. The fewer distractions there are, the easier it will be to process what's happening. Not to mention you'll have a moment completely special to only you and your partner, and no one else on your wedding day.
- Exchange vows during your first look. I had a few couples request to do this, this year and I'm now completely obsessed! It's the perfect time to share all your feelings, unfiltered with your partner. You don't have to worry about them being entertaining, how long they are, how much you cry, or shouting (or awkwardly talking into a microphone) while you read them - because we have all the time and tissues in the world for that during your first look.
- Have a pet, unannounced pregnancy, or something else special to just you two? We can be sure to capture it specifically during this time when no one is around! Whether it's getting pictures with your dog out of the way early on or capturing something just for you both - it's the perfect time to make the moment special and get it all captured to remember forever.
Extra tip! First looks with parents and wedding parties are also really fun and might be a fun addition to your wedding day!