FIRST LOOK – to do or not to do?

First Look
So you are new to this whole getting married thing. Everyone around you are giving you advice and it’s making it so much harder to make decisions. One of the biggest debates is whether or not you and your fiance should do the ‘first look’.


What is the first look?
{ It is a moment on the wedding day before the ceremony, when the bride and groom see each other for the first time.}
The main reasons for brides and grooms not to do the first look is because they want to be ‘traditional’,
they don’t want to ruin the surprise of the groom seeing the dress for the first time,
and they don’t want to lose the ‘excitement’ of walking down the aisle.
One old tale we hear is that it’s ‘bad luck’ to see each other before the ceremony.
Good thing for me is that I don’t believe in ‘luck’ and I have photographed both traditional and non-traditional ≥weddings.
And from my experience, here is why the First Look works.FirstLook9

  1. You get to have that ‘moment’ privately.
    This moment where you see each other for the first time is just shared between the both of you and not in front of 200 guests.
    You have time to absorb the moment in your silence, tears and laughter.
    It’s an intimate time where you get to focus on each other, only! It’s another special and unique memory you get to share.
    You can also include your parents, even bridal party to witness this special moment if you choose to.
    Some worry that having the first look diminishes the excitement of walking down the aisle.
    I promise you, it doesn’t! I have captured the same grooms filled with emotion during the first look and still crying during the ceremony.
    They are both different experiences, but have their own special feeling and excitement. FirstLook6
    2. Your day is not rushed.
    Wedding days are already so hectic!
    By the time the ceremony is over, you’re trying to squeeze in the list of pictures you want done in a short amount of time,
    then you’re rushed to the reception and before you know it the day is over and you didn’t really get a chance to take in what just happened.
    By getting your portraits done before the ceremony, you can schedule in a time to relax.
    I like to make sure there is atleast an hour before the ceremony where everyone can sit down and freshen up.
    FirstLook5
    3. You get the shots you want.
    What all photographers love about scheduling all the formal pictures of the bride and groom,
    bridal party and family before the ceremony is that you get all the shots done.
    I have had a wedding where the bride’s list of all the shots she wanted with her huge bridal party and huge families were so long.
    Because we had to get it all done after the ceremony, it felt so chaotic and rushed.
    After we finished the list of people, we rushed to the reception and didn’t realize until the night was over,
    that we forgot to do the bride and groom shots. Nobody noticed, not even the bride and groom! That’s how crazy it was!
    If you have a big bridal party and large family, it is ideal to get their pictures done before the ceremony.
    I like to make sure that my bride and groom have an hour of just the two of them
    and if possible have a few sunset pictures close to the end of the day.
    The bridal party and family portraits need to have atleast 30mins each
    so you can get through the list of all the formal shots and cute poses you want.
    FirstLook8
    4. Your guests don’t have to wait.
    Your guests take the day off to come witness and support a big moment of your life.
    The last thing you want is your guests to have to wait an hour to eat at the reception because you’re still getting your pictures done.
    Of course you can always let them go ahead and eat, but by the time you arrive, they are ready to greet you and eat the cake and go home.
    From experience, most weddings that don’t have a cocktail hour or serve alcohol or have a dj/live music,
    have guests leaving after they have their slice of cake.
    Not even half the guests stick around for the bride and groom’s exit because they had already waited so long during the reception.
    Having the first look, gives you a chance to not only get all your formal pictures done before the ceremony,
    but it gives you the chance to go straight to the reception and be with your guests!
    You have all these family and friend’s that have come to enjoy your day with you,
    so why not use every single minute they are there, to spend time with them.
    FirstLook3
    If you are still definite in your decision not to do the first look, one thing I urge you, is please be realistic in your expectations of your day.
    Don’t have a long list of requests and poses that you want captured and expect to have them all done in a short amount of time.
    As much as you love your large family, always expect a little less cooperation, even after you give them specific instructions.
    Family pictures can sometimes take the longest. If you have a large bridal party, you may have to limit your shots with them to just a handful.
    The most important pictures are going to be of you and your spouse.
    Make sure you give yourselves more time together because those are the images you are going to want to put up on the walls!
    And lastly, no matter what, ENJOY your day!
    Not everything may fall perfectly into place, sometimes things go wrong.
    But at the end of the day, as long as you and your fiance become husband and wife, that is all that matters!
    Please feel free to share with your bride and groom to be!FirstLook2Thanks for reading!
    <3 Always
    KatParker xoxoFirst Look-6 2

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