Timeline Sample - Fall Wedding, Sunset at 6:30pm
2:30 Details, Bride gets dressed
2:45 Bride, bridesmaids, immediate family portraits
3:15 Groom, groomsmen, immediate family portraits
3:30-3:55 Guests are seated – bridal party tucked away
4:00 Ceremony Begins
4:30 Ceremony Ends/Cocktail hour begins
4:35 Family Portraits
4:50 Bridal Party group shots
5:05 Bride and groom portraits
5:30 Bride and Groom announced into reception and
lead into first dance... Reception begins!
In this scenario, the ceremony and reception are held in the same venue and there is PLENTY of natural light for portraits. However, if the ceremony started at 5:30pm instead or there was a 20 minute drive to your reception, you are pushing it to fit the family portraits (especially if you have large families), bridal party group shots, AND portraits of the two of you!
These three things go hand in hand... in hand. It is absolutely my job to "make it work" as Tim Gunn would say but you probably don't think about these factors like a photographer would. Your ceremony start time and the time of the year affect the amount of lighting you have left after you walk back down the aisle as newlyweds. This is really pertinent to consider if you opt for an aisle reveal! I typically recommend starting your ceremony an hour to an hour and a half before sunset to make sure we have ample time to capture all of your portraits!
Always make sure you are 100% clear on the restrictions a church may put on photography and videography. It's important so you can manage your expectations and you are not caught off guard on your wedding day. I've worked in churches that will not allow ANY pictures to be taken during the ceremony, some just require the photographers to stay in the back or up in a balcony (yay for zoom lenses!), and some give you free rein! It can be helpful to do a quick search to see what photographs of previous weddings in your church can look like.
I always include a second shooter in my wedding coverage which is incredibly helpful in capturing aisle reveals (and the entire day of course!). There are multiple angles to be captured in your walk down the aisle: your guests happily and tearfully there to celebrate your love, the emotional looks between you and your dad, and the priceless moment when you lock eyes with each other up close for the first time. Having a second shooter ensures these special moments, which happen in the blink of an eye, will be captured so you can look back and cherish them for a lifetime.
DAY AFTER SESSION
If your heart is set on an aisle reveal AND having a late ceremony with an early sunset time, a day after session can be an AWESOME way to capture additional portraits! Plus it is always fun to get dressed up again and you can make it more casual. Not to mention I love getting to spend more time with you!!
I love the intimacy of a first look, but I really wanted the first time we laid eyes on each other that day to be when I was walking towards him down the aisle. One of my favorite parts of any wedding is watching the groom react to seeing his bride, it's such an emotional moment and it made me calmer somehow....like I could finally breathe again. It's so easy to get caught up in the day, to get nervous and stress about details, but seeing him kind of made everything else obsolete, even if just for a minute. ~Kim