Getting ready photos can be some of the most treasured photos of your wedding day! The misconception is that ‘getting ready’ photos primarily entails hair and makeup being done. In reality, many things are accomplished during the getting ready portion of your day. You will want to plan time accordingly!
The first thing I will do when I arrive is to photograph all of your details. That includes the wedding dress, shoes, veil or headpiece, invitations, all the rings, jewelry, bouquets, etc. If the groom is taking getting ready photos as well we will photograph the tie, boutonniere, watch, cufflinks, shoes and socks, and any other small details they may have.
Once the detail photos are taken we will have time to take candid photos. That means hair and makeup finishing up, the girls or guys hanging out, having a drink together, the girls in their robes, etc.
The last part of your getting ready wedding day photos is getting dressed. For the men, this is less important. Guys really only need to be photographed putting on their ties, cufflinks, watches, etc. For the women, you will want to perform the various stages with various people helping you. For example, you will most likely want to have your mom helping you into your dress, your grandma putting on your bracelet or veil, your maid of honor helping you with your shoes, etc.
Other moments to capture:
1) Opening gifts or reading cards
2) First look with Dad
3) Posed photos with parents
4) Posed photos of the Bride and/or Groom in their respective suites prior to the wedding beginning
Things to Consider for Your Getting Ready Wedding Day Photos:
Choosing a Good Room. Be sure to choose a getting ready room with an abundance of natural light. Some venues will provide the Bride or Groom with a space to get ready. Unfortunately many times these rooms have no windows, unflattering overhead lighting, and a lot of clutter.
Keep Your Room Clean. At nearly every wedding I walk into the bride or groom suite to find it cluttered with suitcases, drinks, food, clothing, you name it. I get it, it’s very easy to do with so many people in one space! However, if you can consolidate clothing and bags into closets and keep food in one area (preferably a dark corner area that you know we won’t use) it will look considerably better in your photos!
Getting Ready Attire. Photos always look better when the girls have some sort of matching attire. It could be robes, button-up shirts, or any other type of top that is easy to remove over your hair and makeup.
Wedding Gown Hanger. So many brides forget this one! The hanger doesn’t have to have your name on it or say ‘Bride’ (although they are super cute!). You will, however, want a nice hanger that holds your dress and isn’t too distracting. There is nothing worse than a beautiful dress photo with any ugly black plastic hanger. I suggest a heavy-duty wooden shirt hanger (with no pants rail). Make sure the top is movable so that we can hang the dress from any angle. Also, be sure that it has notches to hold the hanger straps that are on your dress, if it doesn’t have the notches the dress often wants to slip off the hanger.
Hair and Makeup Location. If you can manage it, have your hair and makeup artists set up somewhere near a window. Not only will it give them better light to see you, but it will make those photos look 100 times better. Most hair and makeup professionals will do this anyway.