Makeup doth runneth over
The bride is typically left to the very end and after doing hair and makeup for 7 lovely ladies, the makeup artist has understandably fallen behind. Always leave some extra room in the timeline for the bride's makeup and hair to be completed. Beginning the day late can throw off the entire timeline and portrait times are almost always what gets cut.
When you're getting ready it helps if the room you're in is free of clutter. We try out best to creatively angle around the mess but it often is easiest to do a quick sweep before we arrive to minimize distracting elements.
If possible, get ready in a room with plenty of natural light coming through the windows. Artificial light has a very orange appearance, which does not look good on camera. Open the curtains and let the light shine through!
Gather your Details
Before we arrive, take the time to place all items you want photographed in a box. Here is a checklist of typical items:
Wedding rings for both bride and groom with the bride
Invitation suite - 2 copies if possible!
Jewelry - necklace, earrings, hair piece
Family mementos like grandmothers ring, embroidered hankerchief, etc.
Consider asking your guests to put away their phones and cameras for just the ceremony. Not only is it difficult for guests to truly enjoy the moment as they watch it through their iPads, it also can be a huge issue if they get in the way of the professionals who get blocked by a guest as the bride walks down the aisle. Don't let the photos below happen in your wedding!
Write Your Wedding Vows (more for video)
We love getting great audio to weave in throughout highlight films. The officiant (unless it's a friend) often times will not be able to express the genuine emotion you have for one another. If you write and practice reciting your vows, it will be meaningful for your friends and family and also will look great on film! Try to memorize it as best you can so you can look up from the paper. Also write it on a note card or small notebook and not on your phone.
Give us time to be creative
If you're planning on squeezing your family photos, bridal party shots and couple creative portraits into 1 hour, you're doing yourself a disservice. You've made a big investment in us and we want to give you the best possible experience. Portraits take time. If you're not doing a first look then set aside a minimum of 1.5 hours in between the ceremony and reception and perhaps give us time during the reception for sunset photos. Most of our couples set aside 2-3 hours in total for portraits.
Many couples plan out their day with 5 different locations with laser-like precision, leaving little time for travel and setup. When there's a different zipcode for bride getting ready, groom getting ready, first look, ceremony and reception, it can make for a very stressful wedding day. Your coverage might ending up getting compromised, especially if there's video involved since setup and breakdown takes more time than with photo.
What if it Rains?
Eeeek! Everyone knows to have a backup plan in case of rain for the ceremony, but what about family formals and creatives? Some venues are beautiful inside but you should certainly consider all your options before the potential day-of thunderstorms. Be sure to look at the "Indoor/Covered" section of our Locations page for ideas around Boston.
Worst Time of Day
Photographing midday (11am-2pm) in full sun is difficult to achieve good results. This is the point when the sun is highest, causing bright highlights mixed with dark shadows. The best workaround is to find shade. If no shade can be found, then we do our best to angle you away from the sun so that you aren't squinting or having raccoon eyes from shadows.
The Golden Hour
Often times during the summer, golden hour (the hour before sunset) occurs during your reception. If there is any way we can squeeze a 15 minute session right after dinner, I promise you will not regret it! It is simply the best time for photos and video. If your wedding takes place from October-March, the golden hour usually happens right before the start of your reception. Always check sunset times before nailing down the ceremony and reception timeline.
Thinking about adding drone coverage to your wedding? Check out our feature on Brit + Co for the run-down. Keep in mind there are regulations prohibiting flights in certain locations, such as areas of Boston near Logan airport. The rules are always changing so definitely ask us in advance about drone possibilities for your wedding. We also cannot fly in rain or extreme wind above 15mph.
Feed Your Team
We are running around all day carrying heavy gear from one place to another. Granola bars and water can only go so far. We really need about 20 minutes to sit down and have a hot meal. We're not picky on what it is (no allergies) and all venues we've worked at offer vendor meals that are less costly than guest meals since they do not include drinks or apps.
Many venues have a policy to feed vendors after all the guests have eaten. This is a problem when we have nothing to do when guests are eating and the second we get our meal, a major event happens such as the parent dances or cake cutting. It helps immensely if you speak to your coordinator before the wedding to ensure that we eat when you eat so we don't miss an important moment.
Smile and have fun. When you're stressed, the camera can see it. Things go wrong in every wedding yet everything always falls into place at the end. Enjoy yourself and relish the moment. We hear all the time from couples who tell us that they whole day was a wonderful blur but we are there to capture the details so you can remember it for years to come.