Having a pre-wedding shoot with your wedding photographer is a great idea for so many reasons. You get to know how your photographers work, what it's like to be in front of their camera, you get to know them personally and you get to share the latest details of your day with them. Every photographer works a little differently but I think it's pretty universal that if you can arrange to have a pre-shoot with your photographer, the photographs on your day will go a little easier, you'll have more confidence and look better in your wedding day pictures.
For the rest of this blog, I'll explain the sorts of things we try to do in pre-shoots with our own couples.
In the picture above I'm setting up a shot with Jeanette and Russ, explaining what I'm after and how to stand to look at their best. We have a great deal of fun when we're doing these shoots and it's a relief to many couples that being photographed by a professional photographer can actually be an enjoyable experience.
Here's one of the shots from that set.
Most people look at their best when they are happy, relaxed and engaged. We point out to you how you stand and look when you are...because, sadly, many people tense up when a big camera is brought up to the photographer's eye.
Pre-shoots are great for people's confidence. When we put you in the right light and have you happy, relaxed and engaged...you will look fantastic...you'll see how good you look on the back of the camera and that will then improve your confidence and guess what...that makes you look even better.
We'll show you how to stand as a couple. It's surprising how close you have to get to actually look like a couple. When you do get this close, this can give rise to some other posing problems which we point out to you. None of which you have to remember because we will be looking out for it all on the day but having practiced a little beforehand it does make the whole process of taking wedding portraits quicker, easier and with more success.
Pre-wedding shoots also give the photographers a chance to learn a little about you too.
We learn what you look like in different lighting, in black and white or in colour.
We learn what you look like from different angles and with different expressions.
We learn the best strategies for how the two of you can be posed together taking into consideration your relative heights and preferences.
Wedding pre-shoots are also a great way of discovering what you're comfortable with or if you have any particular sensitivities...like only being shot from a preferred side.
It's also an ideal opportunity to find out if you have any plans for your dress or hair that might mean it would always be best if we shot you from a certain side or stood you with your groom to your left or right.
And the wonderful side effect of all this is that you get to have some professionally shot portraits of you, your groom and the two of you as a couple.
Different photographers may do it differently but we are always delighted if you want to use any of your pre-shoot photographs for any of your wedding stationery. If you think you might want to though, do mention it to your photographer before the shoot to make sure they can schedule at least one set with that in mind.
Wedding pre-shoots are great fun, a huge confidence boost and often calm couples' nerves regarding photography on the day.
All our wedding packages include a pre-shoot because it makes the photography on the day so much easier and with so much better results.
Our advice is to buy a wedding photography package that includes a pre-wedding shoot or book a photographer who is happy to let you buy an engagement shoot from them.
Wedding photography is fun and you will look fantastic so don't be nervous and get your pre-wedding shoot booked up.