I get asked a lot whether or not couples should have a first look or not on their wedding day. I find this is such a common concern, mostly because when we look at the traditional aspect, it is normal for the groom see his bride for the first time when she walks down the aisle. I have photographed MANY weddings in the past, and ALL of my couples who chose to have a first look hasn’t regretted it a single bit. Please know, as you read my blog post, I would never want any couple to feel pressured to go with the option of doing a first look. However, I do want to share all the benefits and WHY it is so important to include a first look your wedding day! There is a reason 90% of my couples have a first look, and LOVE it!
From the countless of weddings I have photographed, I realize the many benefits a first look will bring to a couple’s wedding day! Here are 3 reasons why you need a first look:
1.More time with your husband
First looks allow you to be alone and together on your wedding day. This is an intimate moment shared only between you and your husband. Shockingly, this is probably the only moment throughout the whole day you will have with your husband! I have found couples who choose to have their portraits captured all AFTER the ceremony find it a hard to get into the “lovey dovey” mood, mostly because there is an entire crowd of guests around them. Needless to say, first looks allow you to express your emotions freely, without feeling the pressure from an entire audience. When you just shared your first look, everything feels natural, and I am always able to capture some super sweet moments during this portion of the day!
- Diminishes Nerves
I would say 50% of grooms who heard about a first look, weren’t a fan of it at first! However, because they have never experienced a wedding day before, they don’t always know how it feels like to have 200 people staring at him during the ceremony, until it actually happens. Imagine this, 200 set of eyes LOOKING at your groom as you walk down the aisle because they want to see a reaction. Oftentimes your groom may SEEM cool and collected, but in the inside, he feels nervousness. If you have already done a first look, there is nothing for him to worry about. I have SO many testimonials from grooms who weren’t a fan of doing a first look at first, but ended up loving it, before moving on to the ceremony! A lot of grooms admitted that doing a first looks diminished their nerves. During their first look, they were able to express their emotions freely. They were able to tell their bride how beautiful she looks, without 200 people staring at him. He was able to truly enjoy this intimate moment with his wife-to-be, and to be truly present in the moment. If he sees his bride for the first time down the aisle, there is none of that. The groom has to wait until the ceremony ends before he can ever say anything to her. By that time, the groom’s true expressions don’t come out, mostly because the flow of a ceremony doesn’t always allow for it. All in all, if rushing through photos is something you don’t mind, the fact that you get to enjoy an intimate moment with your husband-to-be is SO valuable for you on your wedding day! I know this is something you won’t regret!
- Extend your day by 3 hours!
One of the best things about choosing to have a first look, is that it will it will actually extend your wedding day! Instead of doing your ceremony, rush through portraits than make it JUST on time to your reception, your wedding day is extended by 3 hours! Instead of rushing through portraits with your bridal party, you are able to enjoy more time with them during cocktail hour! You are also able to spend QUALITY time with your guests, those that you truly care about! I love that my client’s wedding albums are FILLED with beautiful photos from this portion of their day!
Here is a testimonial from one of our grooms!
“When I first heard about first looks, I thought it was a bit silly as I am not a center of attention kind of person. In reality, I didn’t really want one. I just wanted to ceremony to be quick and painless. Kayla and my wife convinced me and they were very enthusiastic about the idea. When it came to doing the first look, I felt like the luckiest guy in the world. I fell in love all over again seeing my wife. There is something very special about seeing your wife in a wedding dress with hair and makeup all done. It’s way different than the night out dressed up. A lot of different emotions come out. Waiting to see her for the first look was worth it 100%. Turning around to see each other was definitely the best part. We love how we have this intimate moment capture on camera, something we can look back on when times are tough. To the other grooms, just do it! If you are worried about time, push the other stuff back just to do the first look. You’ll only get one chance. Sharing a first look with your wife is amazing beyond words.” – Corbin
I really hope this blog posts has been helpful as you plan your special day! During my years of shooting weddings, I have seen so MANY benefits to doing a first look, so I felt the need to share my top three reasons why a first look may be the perfect thing to add to your wedding day!