After spending well-earned money, couples do want to get every single memory from their wedding day captured. Hence, the wedding photography industry is one of the biggest fields in the industry. Especially with the rise of digital photography, couples now appreciate being able to document their special day for the memories to be cherished for a lifetime.

In trying to keep up with the hi-tech weddings of the 21st century, brides and grooms incorporate photos in every thing and every location. As photographers are hired to shoot from preparations until the couple’s exit, planning a totally unique wedding is a big task to do especially when under a tight budget.

Little do couples know that they can now make their weddings more personal and unique with the use of photos. The following tips are handy for shutterbug couples that would love to integrate photography into their wedding and also for brides and grooms who would want a 100% personalized wedding.

Swap the flowers for snapshots. Keep the centerpieces interesting and fun by using childhood photos of the bride and the groom. Give the guests something to talk about during cocktail hours. It would be cheaper than buying flowers and more interesting than candles. Set them up with frames, pebbles and rocks, and picture holders. Substitute the childhood photos for a photo of the couple holding the table numbers or a quirky photo of the couple during their engagement shoot.

Entertain with images. During the cocktails, you can save a ton if leave the live band or DJ to start charging by the hour right after dinnertime. What to do with the guests while waiting for the newlyweds to enter? Still you and your partner, in a photo montage. Prepare slideshows using photos from trips, parties, and dates. Use soft lounge music and then estimate the slideshow to run on repeat for about an hour or two. Guests will stay entertained as they mingle with other well-wishers while you get to save up on the party music.

The ever-popular photo booth. After hiring a videographer and also booking a photographer for a day, you’d be hesitant to rent another camera-related item for the wedding – the photo booth. Whether it is a DIY Polaroid-tablecloth backdrop setup or a walk-in type of photo booth producing photo strips, photo booths are a big hit at any gathering and event. They can double as wedding favors for the guests to bring home and also as entertainment for everyone during the entire reception. For a more meaning guest book, have all your family and friends take a snapshot at the photo booth before entering the hall. Allow them to paste their own wacky photo strips beside their wishes for the bride and groom to read after the celebration.

A different perspective. On each table at the reception, assign a couple of disposable cameras for the guests to capture their own angle of the celebration. Leave them a quirky shot list, too – like the best mustache of the night, the newly weds stealing a kiss, and the best dancer during the after-party. You and your partner will surely love the wacky and candid shots from your friends’ point of view. It’s different from the formal and more artistic shots of your hired photographer but then it is filled of surprising moments you might have missed at their own table or at the dance floor. Of course, note that the cameras should be surrendered before they leave the hall, or have someone collect all cameras at the end of the night.

If photos were indeed worth more than a thousand words, then a picture-filled wedding would be worth millions. Never miss a single moment; photos are great because they allow for heart-warming memories to be cherished forever.

wedding-photography-101As one of the most important day in a couple’s journey, the wedding day is a gigantic feat entrusted on to the official photographer to be captured and immortalized to last a lifetime. Imagine a day as big as it is – with all the teeny tiny details waiting to be shot, with all the running back and forth from breakfast to make up, and with all the key people to capture, how can a single photographer manage to cover every single moment?

First off, tackle the problem bit by bit and take down the entire wedding day into several manageable parts. The good thing about events like this is that the flow is systematic and expected. The entire day is organized from one venue to another, with the scheduled itinerary on hand. Always anticipate the next move of the bride, the groom and whoever is with them, be it the minister or the master of ceremonies.In getting down to the gist of the wedding day, shot lists may differ from one photographer to another. Some prefer to take on a more traditional approach on the classic wedding shots, while others simply shoot moments as it unfolds naturally. Here is a basic wedding photography checklist of what clients may expect out of the day’s coverage and the important moments which are not to be missed.

During the preparation, highlight the tense emotions of nervousness, excitement and bliss as the bride and the groom dress up for the most awaited I do’s. The key shots are as follows:

  • The bride and the bridesmaids without make up and during make up. Throw in the mirror shots and capture moments as the girls get all giddy with excitement.
  • The sparkling white dress. This will be the only time that the dress is perfectly clean and luxuriously wrinkle-free, so snap away and let the gown’s glory be celebrated before it is donned.
  • The bridal accessories. As with the gown, a lot of money and effort were given to orchestrate the most amazing outfit for the bride. Shine the limelight on the little details, like the bouquet, shoes, veil, earrings, and other accessories.
  • The groom and his gang. Getting suited up, the groom with the boys are a sure fun to shoot with. Play around with the setting and also get a few portrait shots of the groom with the speech, the best man with the rings, and the parents putting on the groom’s pin.
  • The proud father and the emotional mother. Great shots of these precious moments are priceless. The formal, posed shot is great for the picture frame by the living room but then it is in the stolen shots of the mom tearing up as the bride embraces her father before heading out for the church.

At the church or at the ceremony venue, everyone might be all excited for the breath-taking flight of the bride towards the groom.

  • Details of the venue and decors. Wide-angled shots of the empty pews with the breath-taking arrangements piled along the aisle, these are a few of the details which the couple would greatly appreciate since they aren’t able to take a better look at these during the day itself.
  • The bridal car. As the car arrives, be prepared to take a quick shot as the bride looks out of the car window and flashes a winning smile. Other shots may be the father of the bride helping her out of the car, the bridal entourage scurrying about to prepare for the march, and the bride as she waits behind the church doors – plus points for a wind-blown veil effect.
  • The march. This one is tricky, as there are so many great scenes uncovering the moment the bride steps into the venue. Basically, capture the bride’s silhouette from the front and then take a wide shot of the bride with the entire crowd looking at her as she takes flight. The groom’s reaction is a must shot, and then add in other emotional shots of the parents tearing up or the bride’s sister wiping off her tear. Be alert that as the bride reaches the foot of the altar, her father will hand her off to the groom and this is another key moment you would not want to miss.
  • The vows and the rings. During the entire ceremony, roam around and play with the scene with the use of different angles, lenses, and compositions. Don’t forget to take detail or macro shots of the rings inside the church and be prepared to rush up front during the exchange of vows.
  • The first kiss. Capture this once-in-a-lifetime moment and be 100% sure about the shot, this usually goes into a frame or hanged by their bedside. Take a second to capture the crowd’s reaction to the kiss, too.
  • The exit. Know when they are going to march out and get a great spot directly at the end of the aisle. If the crowd tosses petals or confetti, both wide angle and tight shots of the bride and groom smiling while running out of the venue are wonderful money shots.

The last and most exciting part of the wedding day is during the reception. Most couples do a post-nuptial shoot in another venue along with the bridal entourage, while other brides soak up the time in their grand wedding dress as they plan to change into another comfier dress for the dinner. Either way, don’t forget to allot time in being early to the reception venue and taking shots of the details and the decors before the guests arrive. Here’s a quick rundown of the shots taken during the reception.

  • The venue. Take a snap shot of the decorated venue without guests at first and then filled with guests afterwards. Play with the elements of flowers, candles, bows, signage, and other adornments.
  • A must – cake, table setting, centerpiece, favors, room’s focal point. The couple spent a huge effort on perfect each and every one of these so be sure to give them credit by making a piece of art out of their masterpiece.
  • The entrance of the newlyweds. Be ready with a flash as most entrances are done in dim lighting or with a use of a spotlight on the couple.
  • Highlights of the evening. Toasts, first dance, father-daughter dance, cake cutting, bouquet toss, and other important events should still be documented. These are optional as some couples do away with the traditional way of going on with their feast while others incorporate rituals of their own culture.
  • The party and the exit. Still as essential as other events during the wedding day, the bride and groom partying with their friends is another great opportunity to snag a few intimate photos of the couple. Plus, if you stick around longer, some couple plan amazing exits like a horse-driven carriage or a helicopter ride.

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Photo Credit: Iridescent Photography

Wedding photos are like priceless gems, they are meant to be kept and cherished for a lifetime. No couple would ever dream of looking less than perfect in wedding portraits. However, not everyone is accustomed to being in front of the camera. Imagine having a photographer follow you from the moment you put on your gown in the morning until the wee hours of night.

Yes, wedding photographers make sure they do not miss a moment of the wedding day. Scared? Nervous? Don’t know what to do? Not everyone is born comfortable when in front of a camera so don’t worry. Here are a few wedding photography tips to help battle the anxiety of paparazzi pressure while still ensuring a picture-perfect, frame-worthy shot from the wedding day.

Comfort is key. The most important factor in getting awesome photos is a great photographer-client relationship. Learn his style in posing and shooting, listen to his ideas when it comes to wedding photography, and know what he anticipates given the time and venue of the wedding. You and your partner must find a photographer who is friendly and approachable, this helps alleviate any wedding day jitters and also makes smiling for the camera more natural and less awkward.

Schedule a test run. Engagement shoots can be handy, it allows for you and the photographer to have a trial shoot before the actual wedding day itself. He gets to see which angles and views work best for the newlyweds while the couple gets more accustomed to the shooter’s style and techniques. When previewing the photos from the session, voice out your opinions to give the photographer an idea on which shots you like most.

The importance of the “first look!” Couples may think this shoot is a fad and that they can go without it, especially when they are running behind schedule en route to the ceremony. However, the first look is a really emotional and intimate moment between the bride and the groom. Nothing best encapsulates that wonderful feeling of seeing your beloved all dressed up just to say “I do” to you for her entire lifetime.

Stick to the given schedule. On the day of the wedding, try to follow the given itinerary as much as possible. It allows for the photographers to anticipate the flow of events well and it eliminates the need to rush from one event to the other. As no wedding is ever perfect, inform the photographer in advance if there are any changes to the day’s schedule.

Assign a key person to arrange the folks. The photographer does not know who is who but he does know who is needed in each photo. Get a bridesmaid or a family member to point out the people needed in each scene or to arrange people during the group photos. Saves time for the photographer and also prevents uncles and aunts from being left out in family photos.

Smiling 101. Yes, the day-long shoot may be tiring and smiles do fade after an hour of endless flashes and grins. In between shots, take your time and rest your muscles by either taking a sip of water or asking for a retouch on your powder. To avoid squinting, close your eyes briefly and open then on cue when the photographer counts, “…2, 3, smile!” Don’t hesitate to ask for a retake if you feel that your eyes where closed during the shot or if you weren’t looking at the camera. The photo editor will thank you for this.

Being aware and being conscious. The photographer is your friend, he is on your team and he will try to get the best photos of you and your partner possible. Always favor the camera, when sitting, walking, or even when standing still. But be mindful not to look conscious. Spend more time in enjoying your day and celebrating your love for one another rather than being worried as to how you would look like in your photos.

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