One of my favourite times of day on a wedding day is the preparation time, the time of day when the bride and groom are getting ready for their big moment in front of family and friends, which allows for some incredible moments of emotion and nerves to show through, painting a story of the personalities of the couple through Preparation Wedding Photography. Capturing the individual moments of personality of the bride and groom before they become an ‘item’ so to speak is a primary goal of taking photos during this time of day. This is the last moments of their lives where they aren’t sharing a family with a significant other. I feel it’s important to make use of this time to paint a portrait with my photography of the lives and personality traits the bride and groom exhibit as an individual. The lovey dovey moments when they are together come later.

If you consider a wedding album as a photographic story, then the preparation photos are the beginning of the story, the coming together of these two individuals would be the ceremony, and the happily ever after the glamour photos and reception.

Groom preparation wedding photography

When photographing the preparation of the groom and his groomsmen, it’s important to recognise the atmosphere of the situation, by gauging the nerves, and/or playful (or lack of) nature of the party getting ready. One is able as a photographer to guide the party through a series of unposed photos while getting dressed, while also focussing on small things like wedding rings and shoes. When having as many weddings as I do under my belt, I’m able to read when would be appropriate to also transition into a more traditional, formal shoot after the more photojournalistic scenes.

Bridal preparation wedding photography

When heading over to the girls and the bridal party, the approach to preparation photos is largely similar. There are still nerves, emotions and drama occurring all around, with the difference being that there’s an additional process (usually) considering makeup and putting on much more complicated clothing (bridal dresses). Once again it’s important to capture the small things, like jewellery and shoes while also being photojournalistic leading up to the point where the ladies are putting on their dresses. Preparation wedding photography also tends to become highly traditional in parts with the bridal party, with shots of the bridal party fussing around the bride, and other scenes such as putting on the garter which are very traditional scenes.

I strongly believe however, particularly with preparation wedding photography that it’s far better to be as invisible as possible when being a wedding photographer as I feel that there would be nothing worse than having someone with a huge camera taking shots of you while you’re getting dresses on the most emotionally charged day of your life. As a result, I tend to stay primarily photojournalistic in having the bridal parties get ready as usual and take photos of that,m and then once they’re used to me being there, join in a little for more constructed photos. I tend to hate turning people into mannequins 😀

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