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About Me, Uncategorized, Wedding

First look : Should I do one?

Should I do a first look? This is the number 1 question I get asked by all my couples!  Gone are the days of only doing things the traditional way and let me tell you, it feels good! I absolutely love doing first looks with my couples and here’s why.

-They get to see each other in a private setting

-Nerves go away

-They get all of their photos done before the Ceremony

-They are able to join cocktail hour and talk to everyone

-They don’t get to miss out on their Reception because they have to go table to table

-Family formals are completed before the ceremony leaving everyone to go have fun after!

Most clients are afraid they won’t get the same feeling they would get walking down the aisle with their soon to be husband or wife seeing them for the first time. I’m here to tell you that is wrong! I think if anything a first look just enhances the feeling the couple will get before everyone else gets to see them. I still see tears shed even after the couple has spent the last few hours together. Trust me when I say nothing takes away from that first aisle look.

Couples may want to consider doing a first look especially between the months of September-December. The Light tends to go away at a much earlier hour leaving you with a very tight schedule. It also tends to get colder during these months so getting your pictures done outside usually means the earlier the better!

I truly believe first look photos capture raw emotion and the couple being themselves. The best part is the two of them get to spend some time together before the ceremony. I also believe it is the couples choice and I do have a handful of clients who like to keep it traditional and that is totally fine! As long as you make time in your schedule for photos everything should run smoothly!

First looks add another memorable moment to your day. They also take the pressure off of what can be a stressful day. People talk about weddings being the happiest day of their lives….so doesn’t it make the most sense to be able to spend the most time with each other?

Of course there are a few cons to doing a first look and here they are:


-Can disappoint family members who believe in tradition

-It’s a change from the classic type of wedding

In the end the choice is up to you and as a photographer I am here to make either choice the best it can be for you. Your wedding will be beautiful and one of the happiest days of your lives no matter what you decide! If you have any questions please feel free to ask! And as promised in my instagram post @carlymphotography below is a sample timeline you can use to fill out your day and see if a first look is right for you!


Here is a sample timeline you can use to fill in your own information (This is based on a 8 hour coverage day)

2:00 p.m Photographer Arrival // photographer photographs details, dress, shoes, invitation etc

2:30 p.m. Bridesmaids get dressed // Photographer photographs last minute hair and makeup as bride finishes up

2:45 p.m. Bride finishes makeup and gets dressed

3:15 p.m. Groom departs for first look

3:30 p.m. First Look 🙂

4:00 pm Bridal party photos

4:30 pm Immediate family photos

5:15 p.m Bride gets tucked away from early arriving guests and touchups before Ceremony

5:30 p.m. Photographer photographs Ceremony decor and candids of guests arriving

6:00 p.m. Ceremony

6:30 p.m. End of Ceremony // Guests head to Cocktail hour

6:30 p.m. Photographers photograph Reception decor

7:30 p.m. Guests invited to enter reception and find their seats

7:45 p.m. Introduction

8:00 p.m. First Dance

8:20 p.m. Toasts

9:00 p.m. Dinner/ Dancing

9:20 p.m. Parent Dances

9:30 p.m. Open Dancing

10:00 p.m. Photographer leaves making sure all important photos have been captured and enough dancing pictures.








and when you appear all the rivers sound in my body, bells shake the sky, and a hymn fills the world.