For Brides: How to Get Beautiful Ceremony Pictures

This post is part of a series for brides (and grooms!) or for those who are helping someone plan a wedding. My goal for this series is to help you make informed and educated decisions about your wedding day so that it will be as beautiful as possible! If you're joining me for the first time, you can catch up here:

1. Should I Do an Engagement Session?
2. What Should I Wear for My Engagement Session?
3. Should I Do Bridal Portraits?

4. Making a Wedding Day Photography Timeline

5. How to Get Great Getting Ready Pictures
6. 6 Things Every Bride Should Get Ready for Her Photographer
7. Should We Do a First Look?
8. 5 Steps to Great Bride & Groom Portraits
9. How to Get Beautiful Ceremony Pictures

How to Get Beautiful Ceremony Pictures

Your ceremony is one of the most important parts of your day but it can also be one of the most difficult to photograph! Ceremonies are often in dimly lit churches or outside during the harshest sunlight of the day. Here's a few tips on how to get beautiful pictures of your ceremony:

1. Consider the Lighting
If you've been following along, you've probably noticed a theme in my blog posts by now: lighting is key!! When you're considering venues for your ceremony, think about the lighting. If you're planning an indoor ceremony try and find somewhere that has a lot of windows and natural light. If your ceremony location doesn't have windows, consider leaving all the lights on. I know that may not be the "look" you're going for, but I promise you'll be happy you did it. I've shot in an auditorium before with all of the lights off except for harsh spotlights hitting the couple on stage and it is not a flattering look! It would have been much better, and the lighting would have been more even if all the lights in the auditorium were on.

Ceremony Picture_DiPrima Photography_NC Wedding Photographer

2. Consider the Time of Day
This tip is especially important if you're planning an outdoor ceremony.  I absolutely LOVE shooting outdoor ceremonies! However, if you plan your outdoor ceremony at noon, you're going to have very harsh lighting that will not be flattering in your pictures (unless you luck out with an overcast, non-rainy day!). Consider having your ceremony as close to the golden hour as possible (the golden hour is one hour before the sun sets). If it's not possible to have your ceremony during the golden hour, the later in the afternoon you can have it, the better. However, make sure you steer away from having your ceremony after the sun goes down if you want the best lighting possible!

Hidden Cove at Lake Keowee Wedding

3. Consider the Rules of the Location
Some locations (usually churches) have very particular rules about what the photographer can and can't do during the reception. Sometimes the photographer must remain in the back of the church and cannot use flash. I can work with these requirements because I have the equipment I need to have to perform under those conditions. However, it is always helpful to be able to get closer in order get more intimate shots and creative angles. 

Sleepy Hollow Clemson SC Wedding

If you found this post helpful or interesting please share it and/or leave your thoughts or feedback in the comments section below! Check back next Wednesday and I'll be sharing my next post in the "For Brides" series one part of the wedding day that can sometimes be the most difficult...family formals!

For Brides: 6 Things Every Bride Should Get Ready for Her Photographer | NC Wedding Photographer

This post is part of a series for brides (and grooms!) or for those who are helping someone plan a wedding. My goal for this series is to help you make informed and educated decisions about your wedding day so that it will be as beautiful as possible! If you're joining me for the first time, you can catch up here:

1. Should I Do an Engagement Session?
2. What Should I Wear for My Engagement Session?
3. Should I Do Bridal Portraits?

4. Making a Wedding Day Photography Timeline

5. How to Get Great Getting Ready Pictures
6. 6 Things Every Bride Should Get Ready for Her Photographer

6 Things Every Bride Should Get Ready for Her Photographer

I have found that one of the things brides often forget about is getting their details together for their photographer. I completely understand because I know that as a bride you have about a million things going on in your head! However, it really helps to gather all of your details together before your photographer arrives. It's also really important to make sure all of your details are at either the "getting ready" location or the location where you and your photographer have agreed to shoot your details. As I mentioned in an earlier post, making sure your details are ready and that your photographer doesn't have to go searching for them could mean that you get hundreds and maybe even thousands more pictures on your wedding day!

I love taking detail shots and I think they're really important! Details shots add dimension and variety to your photos and to your album. Your details tie the theme and colors of your wedding day together beautifully and create lasting memories of all the beautiful elements that went into your day.

Here's a few of the important details you need to remember to get ready for your photographer:

1. Wedding Dress and Veil
I highly recommend having your wedding hang on a wooden hanger and also consider getting a customized hanger. You've spent a lot of money on your dress and so you want it to be displayed beautifully in your pictures! A nice hanger will look WAY better than  plastic hanger in your pictures! Also be sure not to forget your veil. Detail pictures can look really beautiful placed against a wedding veil.

2. Shoes
Make sure you have your shoes! Pictures of your shoes always look great in albums and they really give a sense of the style and color of your wedding day.

Detail Shot_NC Wedding Photographer

3. Wedding Rings and Other Jewelry
I've found that when I get ready to shoot details, the groom or best man almost always has part or all of the wedding rings. You definitely want to make sure that the bride or one of the bridesmaids has all 3 of the rings for the beginning part of the day so your photographer can get beautiful shots of all three rings together! Also, if you're wearing a necklace, bracelet, earrings or other jewelry have those ready for your photographer. In addition, be sure to include any other keepsakes or family heirlooms you want photographed.

Bridal Details_NC Wedding Photographer

4. Complete Invitation Set
Your invitation set really sets the tone and theme for your wedding. Be sure to have your save the date, invitation set, programs, and any other paper products or textures (like ribbons from your invitation or vintage stamps) you want photographed. I recommend putting all of these details in a zip lock bag or manilla envelope. 

Getting Ready_NC Wedding Photographer

5. The Bouquets and Boutonnières
Most brides have their flowers brought to their wedding venue. If possible, I recommend having them brought to your "getting ready" location or location where you've agreed to have your details shots. I love to incorporate flowers into detail shots and flowers always make gorgeous pictures!

6. Bridesmaid Dresses
I love taking pictures of all the bridesmaids dresses hanging up next to the wedding dress! If possible, I also recommend putting bridesmaid dresses on wooden hangers or personalized hangers. Bridesmaid dresses also make great backgrounds for some of your detail shots because they tie your color scheme together. 

Bridal Details_NC Wedding Photographer

I hope you found this post helpful! Check back next Wednesday for my next post in the "For Brides" series. I'll be answering the question: "Should We Do a First Look?"

Amanda & Keith's Wedding Featured on Rustic Wedding Chic | NC Wedding Photographer

I am so excited to announce that Amanda and Keith's lovely wedding I shot this past December was featured on Rustic Wedding Chic today! Amanda and Keith's cotton, barn wedding was absolutely beautiful! Not only because of the details and decorations, but more importantly because of Amanda and Keith's love for Christ and love for one another. See the full feature on Rustic Wedding Chic here. See their full wedding post here.

Rustic_Wedding_Chic_Feature_NC_Photographer

For Brides: How to Get Great Getting Ready Pictures | NC Wedding Photographer

This post is part of a series for brides (and grooms!) or for those who are helping someone plan a wedding. My goal for this series is to help you make informed and educated decisions about your wedding day so that it will be as beautiful as possible! If you're joining me for the first time, you can catch up here:

1. Should I Do an Engagement Session?
2. What Should I Wear for My Engagement Session?
3. Should I Do Bridal Portraits?

4. Making a Wedding Day Photography Timeline

5. How to Get Great Getting Ready Pictures

Get_Great_Getting_Ready_Pictures

Oftentimes, one of the most overlooked parts of the wedding day is where you get ready. It seems like a small thing, but it can actually make a significant difference in your pictures. Think about it, this is where you'll have pictures that you'll treasure forever of your mom putting you into your dress or your bridesmaids seeing you for the first time. 

Here's a few suggestions for how to get great "getting ready" pictures:

1. Choose a Location With a Lot of Natural Light
For most of the weddings I've shot the bride ends up getting into her dress in a bathroom or some other small, dimly lit room. This is not a good idea! Natural light makes ALL the difference and so you want to make sure you get ready in a room that has plenty of windows. Many venues have a bridal dressing room as part of their package so make sure you look at this room when you're considering your venue and try to get a spacious room with big windows. 

Getting_Ready_Picture_NC_Wedding_Photographer

2. Keep Your Room Clutter Free
Communicate with your bridal party beforehand and make sure they know they need to pick up their things and keep them as hidden as possible once your photographer arrives. I recommend designating a bridesmaid or groomsmen to make sure this happens. Having an uncluttered room can make a big difference in your pictures! 

Getting_Ready_Picture_NC_Wedding_Photographer

3. Wear Flattering Clothing
During your wedding planning, consider what you and your bridesmaids will be wearing while you get ready. Your "getting ready" outfit may seem like an insignificant detail but if you're going to have several professional pictures of yourself in an outfit, make it a flattering one! Some ideas I've seen are: a white robe or button down shirt for the bride, oversized monogrammed button down shirts for the bridal party, matching tanks, matching PJ's, and matching robes. 

NC Wedding Photographer

4. Make Sure There's Enough Space
Make sure your room is large enough to fit you and your bridesmaids and to give you enough space to get good shots of you getting into your dress. If you're getting ready at a hotel I highly encourage you to upgrade to a a suite. The extra space is definitely worth it! 

Getting_Ready_Picture_NC_Wedding_Photographer

5. Consider the Interior and Exterior Aesthetics 
Getting ready locations with pretty details like unique doors, textured walls, or antique furniture is always a nice, added bonus! Try to find a location to get ready in that matches the style of your wedding day. For example, if your wedding has vintage details try and find an antique or historic venue with vintage details.

Getting_Ready_Pictures_NC_Wedding_Photographer

I hope you found this post helpful! Check back next Wednesday for my next post in the "For Brides" series. I'll be giving you a bridal detail checklist with all the important things you need to think through in order to get beautiful wedding detail shots.

Williams Family Pictures | A Mebane, NC Family Photographer

I really enjoyed the Williams family session! The Williams go to my church here in Mebane and I had a lot of fun getting to know them better. We had gorgeous weather and we started out at their ADORABLE blue home (seriously, it's adorable and the inside is just as cute as the outside!). Then we headed over to some extra property that Grace owns and got some beautiful shots at sunset!