Planning your dream winter wedding but not sure how your photos will look?
Here are my top 5 planning tips on getting the best out of your wedding photographer
1. Consider having an early ceremony to make use of natural light
Winter daylight hours will be much less compared to a summer wedding (in the northern hemisphere that is!) so planning on an earlier ceremony, perhaps starting between 11am-1pm will allow you more time in natural light for your wedding especially for your reception photos too. Daylight is great for naturally lit images and beautiful documentation of the day. Many documentary photographers enjoy using natural daylight especially for photographing your natural complexion.
Do check with your photographer if you’re opting for a later ceremony, especially if your ceremony location is quite dark, you may need to chat about lighting options if you don’t want camera flash to be used for the ceremony or consider additional artificial lighting such as uplighters.
2. Plan your group photos straight after your confetti exit
If there is daytime left and you’d like group & couple photos, it’s great to make use of that available natural light before the sun sets. Logistically you may find it’s a lot easier to gather group photos straight after the confetti exit as you’d already have all your guests gathered in one place. You can assign your ushers/bridesmaids to help your photographer for group photos (a pre-written list always helps on the day!) so you can have these images captured quickly and you’re not out in the cold for too long! That way you can beautifully lit natural images of your loved ones.
3. Go bold with your wedding decor for those wintery vibes!
Winter is an indulgent time of year, especially before Christmas when you’re feeling extra festive! Use that feeling to decorate your venue/s and have fun with it! If your venue already puts up a Christmas tree, ask them where it’s placed if you did fancy having photos taken with the fairy lights twinkling in the background (it makes for a gorgeous effect!) Likewise if you’re planning a January/February wedding, it’s a great time to put your own stamp with the decor and really show your personality with some fun bold colours, these look fantastic in photographs!
4. Get creative at night for some magical moments
Though daylight is gorgeous, with a winter wedding you can really get super creative and bring some drama in your images at night time! These look particularly gorgeous in an album or framed print in your home. As it gets dark early, you can make use of that night time magic with some creative lighting to make images pop like this! These make for stunning end shots at the end of the wedding after dancing the night away as newlyweds.
It’s also a perfect time to catch your breath and reconnect as a couple just you two alone together. You’d no doubt have your loved ones wanting to congratulate you and chat with you throughout the day and you may find you don’t have a lot of time with your new husband/wife! Night time moments like this provide the perfect opportunity to relax and let your photographer create something truly special for you.
5. Embrace the elements and have fun with it, it’s your epic wedding day!
It’s hard to know what the weather will be like for a winter wedding so the best thing you can do is embrace the elements and just have tonnes of fun with it! Often these make for some of the best wedding moments in the gallery as it’s so candid and capturing the emotions & expressions is what documentary wedding photography is all about, that heartfelt feeling! You only get this day once so go for it and get creative with your photography. If it’s windy, rainy, snowy… you name it, it would be a shame to miss these moments & details, especially if you’ve got a gorgeous venue. If it’s safe to, sometimes just braving the weather you can get the most fun shots on your wedding day!
Top Tip: bring a spare pair of flats or wellies if you planning on outdoor portraits where it may be muddy, the walk to where you’d have photos may not be glamorous (the behind-the-scenes of a photo is always so!), but your couple portraits would look breathtaking and timeless!
I’d love to hear your thoughts on winter weddings and if you have any wedding planning top tips from your own wedding, do comment below!
If you’re planning a winter wedding and want to see if I’m available for your date, please get in touch to receive your online brochure. I can’t wait to hear more about it!