In the world of wedding photography, there are a lot of different ways to do this or that. Armen Elliott, Easton, Pa wedding photographer, shares her perspective on four topics that commonly come up among planning couples: Engagement Pictures (what do we really do with all these photos?), First Looks, Day After Shoots, and Wedding Proof Books. We love getting the professional’s perspective behind these hot topics!
Written by Armen Elliott (Easton, Pa)
Four fun ways to use those sweet engagement session photos
So, you and your sweetheart decided to get all dressed up and have those romantic photos taken in the special park where you used to take long strolls together. You absolutely love them! But how do you share them with your friends and family? Here are four different fun ideas:
Save-the-Date Cards: These postcards are usually sent out 6-9 months before your wedding date to alert wedding guests to mark their calendars for your big day. (For the wedding countdown list, click here). Pro tip: some couples prefer to put them in envelopes so the post office doesn’t slap a label across important information or scratch the card. Occasionally, I have a couple who are so organized that they coordinate an autumn engagement session with their autumn wedding the next year, so the Save-the-Date cards, Thank-you notes, and Event Cards all match (seasonally speaking). Some couples will try to match the style of the Save-the-Date card with their wedding theme, e.g. rustic-country with a barn wedding, or modern-clean with a more urban feel. Others just choose the design of the card because they just like it.
Thank-you Note Cards: Since engagement session photos are usually taken 6-12 months before the wedding, you can have them printed in advance and use them for both your shower and wedding gift thank-you notes.
Guest Sign-in book: This is a great way to enlarge your favorite images from your engagement session while remembering all those who attended your wedding.
Event Cards: These cards can be placed beside the guest sign-in book with information printed on the backs so your guests can find the online gallery of the amazing wedding images after they’re released. It’s also a nice wallet-sized keepsake of the two of you!
I hope I’ve given you some fun ideas for using your lovely engagement photos!
The Fun and Romance of the “First Look” on your wedding day
A First Look is a subtly orchestrated private moment between the bride and groom just hours before their wedding ceremony begins. It’s a relatively new trend for bridal couples who wish to streamline their wedding day schedules and maximize the daylight hours for taking formal photographs.
After they have seen each other for the first time in their wedding finery, they usually have some photographs taken of just the two of them. They can then join their bridal party and family for all the formal photos that would customarily be taken immediately after the ceremony and just before cocktail hour.
A “First Look” is chosen by bridal couples who want to seamlessly transition from ceremony to cocktail hour to reception. It allows the bride and groom and the entire bridal party to relax and mingle with guests without interrupting the flow of the day or missing cocktail hour completely.
I hope you enjoy the romance – and humor – of some First Looks I’ve had the pleasure of photographing:
Day After Wedding Shoot
Many couples choose to have that “first look” moment when they see each other after they’ve gotten ready… but if your wedding ceremony starts late in the afternoon with a reception immediately following, or the sunset photo you were hoping for just couldn’t happen because the skies were overcast, you might consider a day-after session. It’s exactly as it sounds — you schedule time with your photographer either the day after the wedding or within the next week to get back into your beautiful wedding dress and take some of those photos that you may not have had time to take on the actual day.
By choosing to do a day-after shoot, all of the stress of of a tight photography timetable is lifted. What a stress-free wonderful opportunity to put on your wedding gown again and take some dramatic photos!
What’s a Wedding Proof Book?
After your wedding day is over and you’ve received your wedding album (which might include 70-100 images) how will you access all the rest of the photos on your flash drive? Digital images usually stay on the computer or iPad, and a box of proof prints usually doesn’t remain intact as a complete set. Honestly, how can you refuse to give your best friend her favorite print of the both of you looking stunning on your wedding day?
In the days of film, photographers used to create contact sheets containing thumbnail-size images of each 35mm negative. Happily, proof book images are much larger than thumbnails (for easy viewing) and are bound together in a book format. The proof book becomes a beautiful visual diary of your entire wedding day. It is something you can easily hold and enjoy browsing through without ever turning on your computer.
We hope these little snippets of wisdom are helpful to you on your planning journey!
More about Armen Elliott: Armen Elliott: Lehigh Valley Photographer
More wedding planning tips: 13 Mistakes to Avoid When Planning Your Wedding