Over the past couple years my wife Jen and I have been photographing weddings in St. Louis and the surrounding area. We have seen a lot of trends come and go but one that we really like is the first look. We have noticed that it is such a great opportunity to get candid photos of our couples and for them to a quick moment together.
The tradition has been for the first time that the couple see each other is when the bride is walking down the isle. I found myself needing to coach our grooms to smile and look happy as often the nerves would take over and we got a lot of deer in the headlights looks. I know our couples were excited to see each other but the photos didn’t always seem to show it. We began shooting first looks and we got those beautiful emotional shots of the couple seeing each other and having a moment to reflect on the day.
The way we do first looks may be a little different than most. Jen and I look for a beautiful well lit spot and we clear every one out. We feel its really important for the couple to have this moment just to themselves. I stand with the groom while Jen gets our bride and then we stand back and have our groom turn around and we capture everything that happens from there. We have seen the stress of the day and nerves melt away. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve heard our couples say ” okay, now I’m ready.”
The benefits of the first look beyond eliminating some of that stress. The first look can help with the flow of the day with photography. We find that it frees up time before the ceremony to have couple and wedding party photos or even the family formals. It can also eliminate the long break between the ceremony and the reception. We know that most photographers are by the hour and first looks help to get more of those important photos of the bride and groom. If your looking for a great way to get beautiful candid moments between the bride and groom a first look may be the way to go.
Jennifer L K Thompson Photography