Notes for the bride

 The wedding day is the end of a long process of preparation for a couple who decide, on a chosen date, to do the very famous “yes, I do”.

 From my experience, since I enter the process relatively early, I notice that with the approach of the day the bride and groom begin to feel nervous, and repressed stress, which ends with the end of the ceremony, religious or not. At that point, everybody does a big breath and all the joy takes place in the atmosphere.

 However, if all the precautions are made the preparation process can be very relaxed and serene.

 Dealing with the important issues in time until the wedding day

 Usually, when a couple decides on the day of their marriage, 4 important issues must be taken:

 -The kind of the ceremony: civil or religious

-The place of the ceremony

– The place of the party/celebration

-The wedding photographer

 What is the kind of Ceremony?

 After the chosen ceremony, begin the process of the chosen place.

If Religious, the Temple of your belief must be chosen by:

 -The connection you have with the place. If one of the two members of the couple has a special connection with some Church. Because is the Church of the home place, because one of you was there baptized or, for example, the parents married there.

 – If there is an Esthetic feel with the church. If the Church is, for you, a nice place to receive your family and guests.

 – Or for a practical reason: the Church is placed near the wedding venue you chose.

 If civil, usual is celebrated at the same place as the party.

 Here,  I would like to see an inversion of the priorities of the Bride and Groom: choose the Wedding Photographer before the venue.

The Wedding Photographer can give you some advice about the best conditions for the venue to be, at the same time, good for the party and for the Wedding Photography.

 The venue must be agreeable to the eye, comfortable for your guests, with good catering service, and, very importantly, must be a nice place as a Wedding Photography scenery. Remember that Photography lives from the atmosphere in the place. So if you do not take this as one of the important points to think about your Wedding memories may not have the same beauty as others.

 So when choosing the venue you must think about:

 – Place for the meal: choose a place with the space needed to accommodate all your guests with free space between them in a way to preserve and promote conviviality between them. The decoration must be beautiful, with the theme of your choice, and, at the same time, as good as the photographic scenery.

 -The space for conviviality after the meal is very important because one of the most important things on the wedding day is the family and friends reunion and they must have a nice and comfortable space to move around and socialize.

 -When visiting the space verify if the place has nice places to photograph the couple and to do the formals.

Remember, this day never comes again and the memory comes from the Wedding Photographs taken all day and, especially, the Photos of the couple. A venue with nice gardens and fully decorated outsides is a very good choice.

 About the preparation for the Wedding day

 As a Wedding Photographer, one of the most important wishes I have is to guarantee my clients always be beautiful in my Wedding Photos, especially the Bride and Groom, and, sometimes, they do not have the notion of the importance of some details.

 When we see, in fashion magazines, those beautiful photos of lovely models, with nice skin tones with awesome light results we forget that no one contract a model with no natural skin tone.

Going out for 15 days at the beach and photographing a session is something that simply does not happen.

The other important detail is the make-up, but make-up for Wedding Photography. Remember that you are being photographed all day.

 So the first piece of advice is not, never,  catch hard sunlight, at least, 15 days before the wedding day, and never the point to burn the skin and, after, the consequence is very bad skin tone with stains very difficult to resolve with makeup.

 Ask your Wedding Photographer what kind of makeup he advises or chooses a make-up artist with knowledge of makeup for Photography. A good Wedding Photographer knows how to advise you about the kind of make-up and because they always want beautiful faces in front of their cameras sure they can help you.

 Sometimes, even doing good makeup, not every makeup artist knows how to do it for photography and if it is the case choose this rule: always soft skin tone, not shine too much with the lights, and if your skin face is a bit browned by the sun choose one or two tones lighter because, that way, your face irradiate light and is better for the photos. After that, simple eyes and lips work complete the job for a nice and beautiful face.

 The hair is another issue. If you have strong hair which resists well to the wind and the past of the day you can be freer with the choice but never brings the hair to your face. Let the face shine and use them as a frame. But if you have thin hair is better to choose a catch hairstyle because it is more resistant to the weather and the passing of time.

 Another important thing is to find a nice combination between hair and makeup. If it is not your natural skin tone avoid dark skin if you have dark hair. The look is to become, in the Photos, too dark and the face does not show as it should.

 Delegation of tasks

 Give to someone you trust the small things you gonna need for the day: who carries the rings, the flowers, etc.

 You must not go worried about details. You should go only nervous because of the ceremony and that is normal. You should go married and the others do the things needed. It is very important to carry a normal and comfortable pair of shoes. The day is long and new shoes are not the most comfortable. If, at the party, a bride shows a pair of tennis shoes under the dress is nice to see.

 The day until the ceremony is long and doing lots of things on the list day can be tiring even before the important things. So you must eat but avoid sugary drinks and sugar food because with time they increase the need for more liquids and more food. The wedding photographer’s lens does not like the bride and groom, at the ceremony, thirst, and hunger. Do not give to him nice faces.

How to find your Wedding Photographer

Most of the services from the other providers, for the wedding, end on the same day. The beautiful decor, the taste of the food, the invite to dance from the DJ all this became a memory after a good night’s sleep.

But the work of the photographer gives you back all these things for all your life. So it is a very important choice and you must have to deal with this very carefully. Here is some advice:

Today on the Internet you have lots of offers from those providers and, at the sites and blogs, you can find very different kinds of work for the approach or for the photographic result. So you need some criteria to begin to choose:

I have a fantastic word for all the steps until the final choice: Empathy.

Empathy with the images at the sites.

Empathy with the photographer at the meeting.

Empathy with the final result of the photography.

 For the final choice you may need to be alert of other things for choosing your wedding photographer:

 After the selection on the Internet you need to contact them and try to find some details: If he is available for your wedding day, in general, how is his approach, the values of the packages, etc.

 I believe that the quality of the work of the photographer must be the first point of contact. But do not mix quality with style because two very good wedding photographers can provide very different style results. It is easy to find bad photographic work but between two styles sometimes you need to use, again, the empathy word to find it.

 See what is the cover style of the photographer. A more classic approach based on the portrait and pose or another one freer, letting the wedding happen and photographing without interfering with the couple and invited. This is wedding photojournalism.

Each method is good and just needs to be well done.

After recovering all this information you must schedule a meeting.

 There you must confirm if the wedding photography is really as you have found on the Internet.

You must ask to see a working day wedding cover. It is easy to show some good Photos and the final and total work became very poor. Do not see wedding compilations. Ask a complete wedding work.

 Today wedding albums are the most interesting ways to show the wedding day. It is possible to tell the story of the day with a beautiful design. Do not let the design become superior to the Photographic Work. The Photos must be the album body of work.

 The wedding photographer stays with the couple all day, more than another person, and it is needed a great agreement of well-being between them. So a nice person at the same time as a nice photographer is the best to find, but as everybody knows a nice person can be a nasty photographer and a nasty person can be a genius. That´s your time to choose what is best for you. 

 The price, sometimes, is a very psychological way to choose: High prices can (should) be an indication of very good work and this is not a norm, and someone with low prices does not mean he is a bad photographer. Let the work talk and find out if this agrees with your budget and taste.

Texto e Fotos: Fernando Colaço