One of the most common questions we’re asked is “should we do a first look?” Like always, we’re here to provide you some insights based on our experience as wedding photographers. Keep reading for three reasons to consider a first look. Seeing each other on the wedding day can be an incredibly emotional and personal moment. The decision for when that should happen is an important one. We hope that this list of positives for doing a first look will help you find which option is right for you!
First of all, what is a first look? A first look is when the couple sees each other prior to the wedding ceremony. This is in a private setting where you both can have alone time and let all your emotions about the day be shared together.
“Our first look was my favorite part of the day! Amid all of the chaos of planning and organizing and making sure wedding party members arrived on time, this was a quick escape from it all. A stolen moment to breathe and share together the start of our next big adventure; “We are getting married!!” – Sophia (view their wedding blog here)
A first look can allow for an intimate moment of unfiltered, raw emotion that is shared between just the two of you. Since weddings are about celebrating the union of two people in love, taking a moment to step out of the spotlight and simply enjoy each other’s presence is invaluable. This can potentially calm your nerves and help you be more present during your wedding ceremony. And don’t worry, nothing can take away that “oh my gosh this is really happening” feeling as you’re walking down the aisle.
2. Flexibility in the timeline.
By seeing each other before the ceremony, you will have more time to spend together which allows for more flexibility in the timeline. Group photos such as bridal party and family photos can be taken before the ceremony instead of during cocktail hour. This also allows you to spend more time getting portraits, talking with friends and family, or getting even more alone time. This is especially helpful for winter weddings so that you can have all your portraits and family photos taken during daylight.
“Our first look was the most magical moment of our day. Thanks to Bradley, we found a secret alley garden behind our hotel that was a surprising oasis from the flurry of our downtown wedding day. Seeing each other for the first time that day, while tucked away from the street and our family and friends gave us the sweetest moment of meditation together before we embarked on our day. Stephanie and Bradley perfectly captured our nerves,our surprise, our love and our joy at seeing each other and sharing this moment alone together.” – Stephanie and Alex (view their wedding blog here)
3. More portraits!
A first look offers a wider variety of photos; whether it be a dock by the river, in the alley behind a downtown hotel, or by some awesome window light this provides you with options that aren’t restricted to the ceremony location.
“We never intended to do a first look. However, we were faced with a torrential downpour of rain and a logistical nightmare trying to stay dry and not see each other prior to the wedding. We decided a first look would be the easiest way to work with the weather. Little did we know, it would also be one of our favorite, most cherished moments of the wedding. That moment, which we chose to share privately (joined only by Stephanie and Bradley), was grounding and breathtaking to say the least. In that perfect moment, nobody else existed. We were reminded of why we were throwing this huge party and what it was all about. We were captivated by one another and had the luxury of relishing in that captivation pressure-free.” – Avery and Caitlyn (view their wedding blog here)
“It was also in this moment that Avery confessed to me that she had spiked my morning protein shake with Bailey’s the day before the wedding, in hopes of helping me calm my nerves. Stephanie and Bradley were able to capture this hilarious moment and it remains one of my favorites.”
Ultimately this is a very personal choice that should be carefully considered. If this is a moment that you want to share with everyone at your wedding, the traditional route may be the best choice for you. If you want a quite moment alone, a first look might be the best option. We hope these three reasons to consider a first look has helped give you a few perspectives help you make your decision. However you want to do it, we’re going to be there to capture it all.