Wedding Advice: How long will the bride and groom portraits take (and do we really have to do them?)

I get this question quite frequently, a lot of brides look at the natural looking images on my website, they see the  beautifully lit, classic looking photographs and naturally wonder how long it took to create them. Some of my couples tell stories of friends weddings where the bride and groom were away from the reception for a couple of hours at the behest of the photographer and assume this is a standard practice needed to create beautiful photographs of the bride and groom.

berkshire-wedding-photography-_0035The good news is that this is not really necessary.  If you and your partner can spare ten minutes at some stage of the day that’s all that is needed to produce memorable, tender and warm photographs of the two of you. It’s easy sometimes to get caught up in the whirl of the wedding with the family and friends around and to forget sometimes that one of the main reasons of the day is to celebrate the relationship between two people.

Ten minutes absence from the party is usually easily achievable and is time well invested. I always think a couple of classic wedding photographs are a great idea, followed by some more interesting, artistic images, perhaps something that would look good in black and white, say.

The idea behind this short portrait session is obviously to make some photographs that focus entirely on the wedding couple. At a typical wedding celebration there is usually 100-200 guests or more and part of the photographers brief is of course to capture impressions of the big picture and the wider sweep of events. This needs to be balanced of course with images that concentrate on some of the core parts of the celebrations and naturally these are centred around you and your partner.

One of the frequent complaints I hear from couples who have invested unwisely in wedding photography that there weren’t enough photographs of the bride and groom together – or that these we’re lacking in some way or another. For example – unflattering lighting, cheesy grins or awkward poses. One reassurance I am able to give my couples is that they will be thrilled with the photographs I make for them. I’ll take care to use soft, kind light that will make you look great, sympathetic and appropriate backgrounds and above all, relaxed, genuine, warm and natural expressions.

One thing I am aware of with this kind of wedding portraiture is that the resulting images are amongst the most popular with the family; the parents, the grandparents and especially with family who might live a distance away and not see you very often. These are the kind of photographs that end up on mantelpieces and desks, enjoyed for many, many years after the wedding. After the wedding, life returns to ‘normal’ and it’s frightening how quickly a decade can go by. Children can come along and I always think that it’s wonderful to look back to the start of it all.

If you are planning a wedding in the coming year, please get in touch for a chat as soon as possible. Like most good wedding photographers, I only accept one wedding per day (and usually just one at any given weekend). Click here to check if your wedding date is free.

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