The first look…a romantic, intimate, and highly controversial tradition that is becoming increasingly more popular with modern brides.
Wait, what is a first look?
First look: When the wedding couple breaks tradition and sees each other for the first time before the wedding ceremony has occurred.
Not sure if having a first look is right for you?
While the decision to include this new trend in your wedding day is entirely up to what you think is right for you and your partner, I want to share some of the reasons why I love the concept of a first look, from the perspective of a wedding photographer!
Here are my top 5 reasons to include a first look on your wedding day:
1. TAKE A PRIVATE MOMENT TOGETHER
One of the most common statements you will hear from newlyweds is, “Our wedding day was a blur…everything went by so fast!”
Incorporating a first look between you and your partner allows you to take a private moment together, away from the chaos. If you are feeling anxious, a hug from your partner might help calm your nerves before the ceremony begins. The first look will give you a chance to share the excitement and anticipation together!
You can also take this time to share your vows in a private, intimate setting. Maybe you want to exchange a heartfelt gift, handwritten note, or even take a shot (or two)! There are so many fun and unique elements to incorporate into this tradition.
2. MORE PICTURES IN A VARIETY OF LIGHTING
Typically, your wedding ceremony time is strategically chosen based on the time of year and amount of sunlight your photographer has to work with.
After the first look, I usually go into a 15 to 20 minute portrait session with the wedding couple.
Because they have already seen each other, it allows for more time to get formal couple portraits in without rushing through them post-ceremony.
Plus, you will get to have two sets of portraits in two different types of lighting: daytime and sunset.
PRO TIP: If you are having a winter wedding, I highly suggest doing a first look! The sun sets much earlier in the winter months, which means you are pressed for time when it comes to getting all of your photos done after the ceremony. Keep in mind that without a first look, you will have to do couple portraits, photos with your wedding party, AND formal family portraits, all before the sun goes down!
3. LOOK YOUR BEST
Humidity. The archnemesis of every bridal hairstyle.
Even if it’s not humid, it could be windy, hot, or even raining (don’t worry, that’s a sign of good luck!). Doing a first look ensures that your hair and makeup stay flawless for your bridal and couple portraits!
Weddings can also be really emotional, so a first look will be helpful if you are a crier! No runny mascara here!
4. ELIMINATE POST-CEREMONY STRESS
Wrangling all of your family members for a formal family photo is always a time-consuming challenge after the ceremony.
With a first look, you will be able to take a family portrait before the ceremony. This eliminates the stress of rushing around to find everyone, as well as allows your family to enjoy cocktail hour with your guests!
Plus, if you have specific groups of family members or guests that you want pictures with, this gives you time to do that instead.
5. BE PRESENT AT YOUR PARTY
You spent the last year planning this amazing cocktail reception with delicious hors d’oeuvres and pretty drinks…and you don’t even get to enjoy it?!
By getting all of the portraits out of the way before the ceremony, you can munch and mingle with your guests during the first half of your cocktail hour. Then, we will sneak away to take sunset portraits of you and your spouse before the reception begins!
Those are my top 5 reasons why I think including a first look on your wedding day is an amazing idea. I hope this helps with your decision on incorporating this moment into your special day!
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