List of wedding photos: what really happens when the big day arrives

The shots. The story

Tue 21 Feb, 2023

Wedding photo shoot

After months of discussions, tastings, dress test, make-up test, hairstyle test, various brainstorms, video calls, emails, emails confirming brainstorms, brainstorms confirming cake tastings, etc,... finally, it's here: the big day has arrived, your wedding day. At last all the choices have been made, there's nothing left to do but enjoy the day, hope everyone has good time, and say a last prayer to Jupiter Pluvio.
But I am here to talk about photography not meteorology!
So let's try to better understand how exactly your photographer will behave during your wedding day.

The groom's preparation

In my experience, grooms fall into two categories: those who want to be photographed, and those who don't like it at all, but they adapt.
I would like to reassure all those belonging to the shy & reserved category: I always work trying to put my clients at ease, so I never push a groom (and a bride, of course) who is reticent, to be photographed, especially in a very intimate moment like this. In this case I only shoot a few details of the suit, and a few family photos or with the groomsmen and close friends (who are usually with him during the getting ready); after that, I run off to the ceremony venue, so that he has plenty of time to follow his own pace, without feeling pressurised by a foreign presence. I will then take care, during the rest of the day, to take candid photos of the groom, so that he also has his photo shoot.
On the other hand, when the groom is confortable with the camera, I take a little more time to details and group photos, the getting ready and also some portraits of him.
When the groom wants his preparation, I let him to my assistant; an eventuality that occurs especially when the bride and groom do not prepare in the same place. Unlike the bride, the groom tends to get ready a few minutes before the ceremony, and I am already at the venue where the ceremony will take place to film the details.

The bride's getting ready

I usually arrive at the bride's two hours before the time of the ceremony, and my arrival usually coincides with the arrival of the make-up artist as well. I must admit that despite my experience, this moment is always very moving, because it is absolutely the most emotionally delicate phase of the day. At the same time, it is one of my favourite phases because when the tension is so high, people drop their masks off, show themselves for what they really are, and most important: almost immediately forget I am there. This allows me to start getting into the mood of the day, understand her relationships with the people present (family, bridemaids and close friends), and begin to follow this magical ritual: watching her transform from a woman into a bride, a real metamorphosis involving a hairstyle, make-up and dress chosen especially for the occasion.
At this moment I try to blend in with the wallpaper, I don't want to interfere with this process at all, and I just focus on the story and the details. After the metamorphosis is over, when the bride is ready, I propose a few photos with family members or bridemaids, but always without forcing and only if the bride is eager to have these shots.

Wedding photos list: the ceremony

When I arrive at the reception, I immediately focus on the details, the flowers, the tables, the way it has been set up, trying to capture it without the presence of the guests. Then I shift my attention to the emotional part, the guests starting to take their seats, and of course the groom, waiting for his beauty. I admit that I have a preference for the sensible groom, who may shed a tear, but because they are so unbelievably happy, they cannot hide it, to the point of making me cry too.

Once the bride has made her entrance and we get into the heart of the ceremony, and after I've caught up with the guests, I focus on what are the most important aspects of the rite: rings, signatures and rice.
The ceremony, especially if religious, consists of different moments depending on the culture that is celebrating it: there are those who break a glass, those who crown the bride and groom, those who bind their hands with a cloth symbolising their union...
When, on the other hand, the ceremony is secular, as there is no real ritual apart from the reading of the articles of the civil code, there is room for fantasy and each couple usually invites their bridemaid and groomsman and family members to read a speech in their honour.

Wedding day photos: the aperitif, the reception and the party

Once the ceremony is over, after the rice and the congratulations, I quickly head to the reception to capture the details of the set-up and the aperitif before the arrival of the bride and groom and their guests.
Often the aperitif takes place at sunset, and this allows me to offer the bride and groom some couple portraits in this suggestive light, also known as golden hour, precisely because of its warm, orangey hue. Mine is a very quick mode, in fact unless the couple wants a particularly long couple session and in another place, I always try to take these photos on location and in a time frame of no more than 15 minutes. The reason is simple: I do not like to kidnap the bride and groom from their guests for too long: it is a day of celebration and my professionalism lies precisely in finding the right compromise between the execution of my work and their right to celebrate.

Group wedding photos

The aperitif is also the ideal moment for group pictures, another moment that I try to solve in the shortest time possible for the reasons I have already told you about, but also in respect of the catering who has very tight and binding deadlines.

During the rest of the reception, my candid wedding photography service continues in the name of discretion and spontaneity, waiting for the two closing moments of the dinner: the cutting of the cake and the bouquet.

Once the first part of the reception is over, it's time for the party proper, the one that usually starts with the bride and groom dancing, and then continues until late at night, but by then I have already left because beyond a certain alcohol content, every photograph is superfluous ;)

This is roughly how my candid wedding photoshoot is carried out, but every marriage is special and unique, and it is through reportage that I try to capture that essence and uniqueness that makes it unique and different from all the others. My work, however, can only be done to the best advantage through precise and punctual communication with the bride and groom. Only in this way can I be sure to respond with my images to all their needs, so never tire of asking me questions because ours is 100% teamwork! Contact me and tell me your story.

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