Why you should do a first look

As a Chicago wedding photographer – I get this question a lot.  Should we do a first look? YES – you should.

There is an inherent benefit to your wedding day timeline when you do a first look. After the first look, we can do bridal party photos and then we don’t have to do them again after the ceremony. Yes, so there’s that. But look, I’m with you for 8/10/12 hours so there really is NO impact to me. The timeline benefit is for YOU – it’s so we don’t have to do photos of you and your bridal party separately then do full bridal party photos after the ceremony again – that’s the kind of thing that will exhaust you and your bridal party. I prefer not to tire out my bride and groom (or bridal party). I’d rather you have fun. I’d rather develop a timeline that answers the question “how do photos fit into your wedding”? not the other way around.

So that’s that – the first and smaller benefit.

The main thing I want to talk about here is the stress and anticipation you’ll be feeling on your wedding day.

This is something you cannot envision now – as you’re planning your wedding. You can’t put yourself into that state of mind right now because our minds don’t work that way – our minds don’t want to feel stress and anxiety if they don’t have to. So it’s incredibly difficult to put yourself into the frame of reference of what you MIGHT be feeling in a few months. So I will help you.

Take all the months of planning that you’ve done so far. All the phone calls, coffee meet ups with various vendors, emails with friends talking about tuxes and dresses and combine that with the stress of what you still have to get done before the wedding. On top of that, add the hundreds of questions you have to answer on your wedding day:

  • Where do the flowers go?
  • Who is putting on the guys’ boutonniere?
  • Where are the mothers’ corsage?
  • Why is my dad late for our father-daughter first look?
  • Who has my phone?
  • Are we on time?
  • Who’s going to clean up the spilled mimosa?
  • Does the driver know where to go?
  • What’s the number to the maintenance office so someone can come fix the air conditioning?
  • Do you want to put your veil in now or later?
  • Where is the letter he wrote me?
  • What time is grandma arriving?

Feeling it yet? No?

  • Who can help me untangle my jewelry?
  • Should the bridesmaids get dressed yet?
  • Why isn’t my mom dressed yet?
  • The flowers just dripped all over the bridesmaids dress…WTF
  • Is my makeup coming off?
  • Am I sweating too much?
  • Where are my shoes?
  • Who has the rings?
  • Is everyone going to be looking at me?
  • ect
  • ect
  • ect.

My point: You can’t yet imagine how you’ll feel on your wedding day. But I can and I have the solution to relieving some of the anxiety and stress that you’ll inherently feel. Do a first look!

Stress and anxiety are like pressure – pressure that builds and builds and builds until something releases that pressure. That’s what the first look does. It gently releases the pressure that’s been building since you started planning the wedding. The way I run my first looks is simple. No friends, no family, no expectations. It’s intimate and laid back. It’s just you and your future husband/wife having your own, well deserved moment. You’d be surprised how amazing it can be to see the only other person who is going through this with you. You’ll instantly feel comforted and the stress and anxiety melts away because now you KNOW you’re not the only one here.

Every single bride I’ve had, who did a first look, said they were happy they did one and felt a lot less anxious for the rest of the day. I’ve also had A LOT of my brides who did not do a first look, say they wish they had done one. Quite often, timelines get squished and photos end up taking a hit or become rushed.

Are first looks required? No, but they’re helpful and awesome. Aim to make your wedding as stress-free as possible!

Hire me to give you awesome wedding photos, ones that will make you feel loved and cherished.  I’ll also give you a worry-free wedding experience! Here’s a few awesome and recent first looks:

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