first look... yes or no?
First looks aren’t for everyone and that’s a-okay. It’s okay to want to see your loved one for the first time as you walk down the aisle. Anything you want for your wedding day is the best option for you. Period. No, seriously- you’re the boss here.
It’s your day. Every single choice you that make will be absolutely 100% okay no matter how family may feel about it. That being said, why is it that some couples choose to do a first look? Why do couples choose not to? I mean, like… what are the pros and cons? Lemme tell ya!
pros of first looks:
First of all, you can get lots of photos taken before the ceremony if you put aside the time for a first look. If you’re hoping to join your loved ones for cocktail hour, a first look is a great option. This gives you the opportunity to have your couples portraits & wedding party photos taken before the ceremony. That gives you wayyyy more time to hang with your guests before dinner, ya know?
If you choose not to have a first look, you’ll likely need to make time for all of your photos (couples portraits as well as any group pics you’d like to include (both wedding party & family) after the ceremony/during your cocktail hour. You might miss some fun stuff if you have to take pictures during that time!
Long story short, skipping the first look could mean you’d have to make separate time for the photographer which inevitably takes away from your pre-dinner/post-ceremony hour with the cool peeps you invited for your big day.
A first look doesn’t spoil the ceremony, trust me. Having a special private moment together before exchanging vows allows you to experience that incredible emotion privately without the eyes of sooo many people fixated on you.
I’m a firm believer in making the time to stop, slow down, and breathe in the slow moments of your wedding day together. The day will fly by, that much we know. I believe it’s ideal to take advantage of every opportunity you have to connect with one another; those moments should be so incredibly valued. So, any excuse to have a few seconds alone with one another (with your photographer present in the shadows, of course) is a good one!
If photographing emotion is important to you, a first look may be the way to go. Weddings are intimate as can be, but if you want to capture both people’s emotions on camera in one image, that isn’t so easy to do during a ceremony.
Is walking down the aisle emotional? Absolutely, it is. But, as a photographer, I know that I won’t be able to photograph you together in those images. But, hey… on the other hand, if you do choose to have a first look, you’re going to be able to see both of your reactions simultaneously in your final gallery.
cons of first looks:
You have to get ready earlier if you want to make time for a first look. If getting ready early is a bummer for you, then a first look might not be the best fit for you and your partner.
Lighting might be a little funky. What I mean by that is- typically, your wedding photographer helps you to make your timeline fit the perfect timing for lighting (sunset, sunrise, prime natural light, ya know?) in terms of the best light for photos. If you plan to have your first look happen early in the day, there’s a possibility that lighting could be harsh and bright during your first look.
okay, so now what?
Moral of the story, my friends? There’s really no right or wrong answer when it comes to a first look. It’s important that you and your partner put aside some time to discuss what matters the absolute most to you. If you ever have questions and find yourself thinking “how in the actual heck do I make this choice?,” contact me any time!
When you hire me, I’ll become your partner in planning. I’ll be your teammate. I’m here for you & I’m more than ready to help you in every single decision you have to make. If you want my help, please feel free to fill out the contact form below. You know where to find me.
My biased opinion though? Any excuse for a moment alone together on your wedding day is a good excuse. I’m very into the first look trend if you couldn’t tell. Just saying.
-Emily W of EEW Photography-