Back to Basics.
We’ve thought long and hard about what to contribute to this guest post here on Simply Peachy and even got as far as halfway through writing an altogether different article before settling on this topic. It’s something that means a lot to us, and speaks deeply to the why and how we photograph, and we hope it might resonate with you too. Amidst the beauty of jaw-dropping gowns, amazing florals, those shoes you have always wanted, and that last DIY element that you’d like to include, sometimes it’s hard to step back and realise just what your wedding day really means. Granted, it’s a (hopefully) once in a lifetime affair where you are surrounded by the best of friends and family to help you celebrate the occasion in utmost style, but it’s also the start of the journey of marriage that will demand your all long after the plans and parties have subsided. In our own journey as photographers, our hearts are truly moved when we witness meaningful nuptials between two lovers that trump every other tangible detail. We see that connection, and in doing so, accept the silent invitation we have been given to capture all that it is.
So, in a roundabout way, here are just a couple of our tips for some great wedding photos, and perhaps an even better marriage.
Make it personal at the altar. These are the promises you are making to the one you have chosen to be with for life, and it’s nice to have the freedom in your vows to reflect that. Having been there ourselves, we have found that this exercise alone causes you to reflect on what has gone by and to acknowledge your hopes and purpose for the journey ahead. Making your vows personal will no doubt be a little harder, but we honestly believe it is an investment that your future self will thank you for.
Relax. Smile. Enjoy it. So you’ve heard this one many times before but it is so true. The greatest accessory you can have on your wedding day is a dazzler of a smile, radiating from within. The planning has been done, and things might not have turned out exactly the way you have planned since it rarely ever does. The least and the best you can do is to truly be present in the moments you are in, not worrying over little details that didn’t meet your expectation (most of your guests probably won’t even notice) and this attitude will happily be reflected in the visual records of your day.
Be true to yourself and not the trends. When you are making decisions leading up to your wedding day, ask if the result will be something that reflects you and your partner, either individually or as a couple. As eye-catching as trends can be, when you look back on your photos in the decades to come, you want to be able to honestly say that your wedding day was the perfect celebration of your love and you wouldn’t have changed a thing. We often are asked what are the rules or the guidelines for a wedding and we like to stress that there are absolutely none. Don’t feel you need to follow a handbook or the runsheet that’s been circulating around your friendship circle. Figure out what are the most important elements of a wedding celebration that are meaningful to you as a couple and work the day around that. Your love language might lead you to write personalized messages as bombonierres to each of your guests as a place card, or you might skip on those table photos and instead take the time to try and speak to each of the guests you have invited to share the day with you in a more meaningful way. In any event, you’re most likely to have a whole heap of fun in consciously making these decisions and be rewarded with visual evidence to match.
Having a re-read of this we realize just how ironic it is that this post may be up here on Simply Peachy. Please know that as photographers, we swoon as much as any of you out there looking at these amazing details and the beauty that comes together on a wedding day. We even get a little jealous at times looking at just how visually stunning weddings can be. But then we remind ourselves why we do what we do, and we know that it is first and foremost because we believe in the relationship of love, and the commitment of marriage. We hope that in amidst the whirlwind excitement of planning all that your day looks like, this is really the icing on the cake and what is of greater importance is what your marriage looks like not just on the wedding day but each and every day that follows.
Photo by Tealily Photography.