Dear Brides... From, A Photographer
What I've learned from wedding day bumps, wrinkles, catastrophes, near disasters and narrowly avoided calamities.
1. If you don't want to see your groom before the wedding, be careful of social media! I've been at weddings where the bride was just on her smart-phone and saw a picture of her groom posted to facebook by one of the groomsmen.
4. Always budget a few minutes extra for each scheduled event so that there's never a rushed feeling. You'll be happy for any down-time but you'll regret any rushed time.
5. Along that line, make sure to leave enough time between when the hairstylist and makeup artist actually LEAVE and the ceremony start time to do photos of you as well as you and your bridesmaids.
6. If you're doing a first-look, make sure to coordinate that with your photographer and if there's only one photographer, figure out which of you you want him or her to photograph first (i.e. your face as you see your groom or his face as he sees you).
7. Make sure to dry off the bridesmaid's flowers before taking them out of any vases/water or they'll drip. The drips wont stain people's dresses but they may show up in photos.
8. Bring needle, thread, safety pins, etc. I've had several weddings where one or more of the bridesmaid's dress zippers broke. And it wasn't a catastrophe because we had sewing supplies on hand!
10. Ask your officiator to make an announcement to have family and the bridal party stay close by after the ceremony if you're doing family photos then. Family photos can be either 15 minutes long total if everyone's nearby or it can turn into 45 minute fiasco (cutting into the celebration fun!) if you lose grandpa to the bar and Aunt Edna to her catching-up conversations.
11. Don't forget to talk to your photographer about their dinner/break. Nobody likes to be photographed while they're eating so normally dinner is the best time to let your photographer eat. If you are providing a meal for your photographer (and his or her assistants), follow up with your caterer about it! I've been to weddings where the bride and groom intended to feed me but they forgot to follow up with the caterer and I had to photograph for 8+ hrs on an empty stomach. Or they had buffet food for everyone (me included) but no plate or cutlery for me.