Wedding planning is truly one of the most exciting times in your life, it can also be a crazy time. With so much for you to check off we wanted to help you with one little piece of your planning; your wedding photography… so we created a list of ten wedding day tips to make the most of your wedding photography.

1.) Wedding Day Timeline

There’s a reason timeline holds spot number one on our list of ten tips to make the most of your wedding day photos! The timeline is everything. Every SMP Couple receives a customized wedding day timeline, built to ensure that there is enough time to capture everything you desire… and to have fun doing it. Planning for some cushion time between locations and events allows for a stress-free day that is conducive to capturing, real in-the-moment candids. This also allows a few extra minutes here and there for bathroom breaks, makeup touch-ups and the inevitable string of hugs that are coming your way!

Bride and groom pause together on the docks at Rhode Island wedding venue, Harbor Lights.

2.) It’s all in the details

Life is short, get the shoes! No really let’s get those beauties… Your wedding day details are part of the story of your day. We understand that you spent months maybe even years picking out the perfect pieces to complement your wedding vision. We want to document these details in a way that adds to the narrative of your day. Some things to gather before the we arrive are…

  • Your Shoes
  • The Veil and Hairpieces
  • Your Dress
  • The Rings- All three, please
  • The Invitation Suite
  • Bridal Jewelry
  • Gifts (from your fiance or to your bridal party)
  • The Bouquet
  • Your something Borrowed and Blue
  • Your Perfume

Wedding heels with embellished sides.

3.) Go to the light

The getting ready images are the first images captured in the day. Window light has a magic power, in that it makes everyone’s skin look amazing! The more light the better. I LOVE photographing my Brides and her maids in a gorgeous well lit room, the photos come out so dreamy. It honestly impacts the images in a beautiful way and it really sets the tone for the rest of the day.

Bride getting ready at the Newport Mansions in Newport Rhode Island.

4.) Personal touches

Weddings aren’t what they used to be, and I’m all about it! The traditions and rules of what is expected on a wedding day are being replaced by the idea of personalizing and creating a wedding day that is unique and reflective of each couple.

This is your day, what does that mean to you? Perhaps your both bookworms and so the centerpieces incorporate quotes from your favorite literature… or maybe your pup is really your furbaby and you wouldn’t be able to say I do without them… I love seeing how my couples incorporate their own unique intrests into their day.

Groom plays the guitar at his rustic country wedding at the Five Bridge Inn in Rehoboth MA.

5.) Have a rain plan

Has anyone ever told you that rain on your wedding day is good luck? Rain on your wedding day doesn’t have to be bad news… having an indoor location in mind is always a good idea. If it looks like there’s a chance of rain I might also recommend purchasing a few clear umbrellas. Some of my favorite rainy day portraits are when my couple is snuggled under an umbrella, leaning in for a kiss amungunst the falling raindrops!

Rainy wedding day photos in the gardens of the Chanler at Cliff Walk in Newport Rhode Island.

6.) Makeup and Hair tips

Insider secret… I enjoyed seven years in cosmetology before I entered the professional world of photography. A great stylist and makeup artist can make a world of difference on your wedding day. Hiring a professional who specializes in wedding day hair and makeup will not only help you create that gorgeous wedding day look you have dreamt of, but they will insure that you look your best in your photos. Did you know that there are some foundations that are reflective and can make your skin appear shiny? Perhaps your in love with the idea of wearing your hair down, but your getting married on a beach and the wind might not play nice with your luscious locks. A trusted professional will give you expert advice and guide you through some of your most important wedding day style decisions.

Classic wedding day make up.

7.) Locations

When it comes to photographing at multiple locations it is helpful to consider this general rule of thumb; more portrait locations means more variation in your photos but less portraits overall. Limiting locations to one or two favorite spots means more time for creative and connected portraits. Choosing to hold your portraits in one central location will also save you on time and transportation, which means theres more time for you to be in the moment and enjoy your day!

A bride and groom go for a sunset walk during their wedding at White Cliffs Country Club in Plymouth MA.

8.) First Look Magic

Oh how I love a first look! I could go on forever about the magic of a first look, which is why I have dedicated an entire blog post about it here, but check out the list below for just a few key points on why first looks can be so awesome!

  • First looks allow you to be in charge of your own wedding day timeline. You want to make time for multiple locations… Let’a do it! Being at cocktail hour is important to you… Not a problem! Fall or Winter wedding and the sun sets super early…No biggie.
  • First looks give you all the feels. So many times I see otherwise stoic grooms completely loose their minds when they see their brides for the first time during a private first look. I’m talking the full spectrum of emotions… larger than life smiles, nervous laughter, even tears.
  • It’s an addition to your day not a subtraction. Couples who chose to have a first look say it was the best decision they made, and they found it didn’t take anything away from walking down the aisle.
  • Your bridal party and family will thank you! When we incorporate a first look, the formal portrait segment of your day is planned for before the ceremony. This means that you and your bridal party get to attend your cocktail hour, and enjoy a drink with your closest family and friends. Say hello to all your guests and actually eat one of those delicious hors d’oeuvres you picked out at your tasting.
  • Cocktail hour candids! Normally we would be photographing your formals during this time, but when you get to join cocktail hour we get to capture the candid moments you share with all your guests.
Emotional First look photos at Hillside Country Club in Rehoboth MA.

9.) Bridal Party and Family Photos

When it comes to family formals, organization is key. While honoring each of your loved ones in your immediate family is our priority, we also want to ensure we are maximizing your portrait time. A well organized list of requested groupings can be a huge help. We recommend limiting the number of individual groupings to help keep this part of the day efficient and enjoyable for your and your family and friends. Delegating someone (not in the photo) to help gather family members needed for photos is always a great idea.

Wedding Party pose for a photo inside Belle Mer's Salon.

10.) Smile and Trust Your Team

Your wedding day goes by in a flash. Allow yourself to trust the team of professionals your have hired, so you can be as present and in the moment as possible. We are all there to make sure your wedding day is as absolutley perfect as possible. Now all you have to do is smile and have fun!

Behind the scenes photo at Lake Pearl Wrentham.

Bonus Tip:

Take engagement photos! Engagement photos are an awesome way to get to know each other. Being photographed together for the first time can be intimidating at first, but by the end of the session you will be professionals! Having the opportunity to work together before the big day, is a great way to break that ice, have some fun and allow me to learn more about your unique chemistry and how I can best capture it on your wedding day. Not to mention create some beautiful art for you to display at your wedding and in your home.

Wall Art from engagement session



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