What is a ‘first look’, you might be asking yourself?

A First Look is when the couple sets dedicated time aside to capture that intimate, first moment when the bride and groom see each other on their wedding day for the FIRST TIME!  I will be the first to tell you, a First Look is FILLED with emotion, anticipation and excitement!!  It is one of my favorite parts of the wedding day and makes me feels like I am watching a romantic movie every time!

The reason I wrote a blog about this topic is because it truly needs to be considered!  It was one of my biggest regrets on my own wedding day!  I would have cherished those First Look images!  We got married in a Catholic Church and kept things very traditional.  But here are 5 reasons you should consider a ‘First Look’!

How do we do a First Look at our Wedding?

What is so amazing about it is that it is a private moment between the bride and groom.  There are several ways a couple can do a first look.  As the bride walks up, she can tap the groom on the shoulder and he turns around to see her or she ask him to turn around once she gets close by.

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First Look Groom Sees Bride for the First Time

 1.  Fresh Hair makeup and Florals

A ‘First Look’ is  typically done on wedding day right after the getting ready photos.  This means the hair, makeup and florals are all fresh and perfect!

Weather conditions such as high heat, humidity, rain, etc. can take its toll on hair and floral bouquets and boutonnieres.

If no first look takes place, then your hair and makeup have to survive the ceremony tears, all of the hugs, family formal photos, and bridal party photos before getting to your bride and groom portraits.

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2.  Intimate Moment with Each Other

This is THE perfect time to take a couple of minutes on your wedding day for JUST the two of you!  This is your one, private moment to tell each other how amazing each of you looks, what you love about the dress, read a letter to each other or practice reading vows to each other.

The number one thing I hear from couple’s is that there was no free moment during the entire day and how quickly it all goes by!

All day you will be greeted by a stream of guests, family and friends telling you congratulations!  The rest of the day continues on the same, there will constantly be people coming up and congratulating you.  There is no free moment the entire day and it all goes by so fast!  So make sure you set aside a few minutes for just the two of you, by setting up your wedding day to include a First Look.

3.  Less Wedding Day Stress

If there is no other reason other than you are looking for THE MOST stress-free way to do your wedding, THIS is the MAIN reason right here!

Often times, couple’s don’t think about ‘how many’ photos there are to complete during the cocktail hour, if no First Look is done!

If no First Look takes place, here is how you can expect your wedding day to flow…

After you’ve already been been standing up at the ceremony, it has ended and its now time to dive into family formal photos.  Not just for your side but your fiance’s side too!

By the time family formal photos are completed and you have just been smiling for 30 minutes, it is time for your bridal party photos!   Now you are really tired of smiling…but no rest just yet!

You are now feeling ‘pictured out’ but you can’t sit down and have a rest just yet!  Next up is your bride and groom wedding portraits!  But you are already tired and not showing a very relaxing smile.

If a First Look DOES take place, your Bride and Groom Portraits and Bridal Party Photos are all completed prior to the ceremony!!

Once the ceremony ends, all you have left is family formal photos and that’s it!  Perhaps just a couple ‘just married’ photos and you can either enjoy cocktail hour with your guests or relax and enjoy a cocktail with your bridal party!

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4.  Eases the Nerves

Often times, bride’s are thinking as they come down the aisle, they are going to see dramatic crying from the groom, just as you would see in a Hollywood movie!  This is actually rarely the case.

Many times, anxiousness takes over and the groom appears emotionless.  But why does this happen?  If we think about how the groom may be feeling in the minutes before the bride walks down the aisle, when there is no First Look, the music is playing and what is everyone doing?  Staring directly at the groom…waiting to see his reaction.  This can cause the groom to tense up, appear frozen and as a result, have no reaction.

So if you are looking for a more emotional response, in my experience, I’ve seen many more groom’s have a stronger emotional connection and reaction when the first look is in an intimate, private setting with no pressure being placed on them.

Both the bride and groom’s nerves are eased and they can be ‘in the moment’ and present during the ceremony.  ‘First Looks’ often result in the day’s most romantic and emotion filled imagery!

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5.  More Images will be in Your Wedding Gallery

This is usually something couple’s don’t even think about!  A ‘First Look’ means MORE images of the bride and groom together!

It is another opportunity for imagery and adds variety and a change of scenery to the backdrop!

If no first look, the only dedicated time set aside for bride and groom portraits is following the ceremony.  So no matter HOW the weather is that moment, that is what will be in your images.

If a First Look is Considered on wedding day, then we typically go directly into Bride and Groom Portraits!  So bride and groom portraits are completed prior to the ceremony.

Following the ceremony, we will do a few more “Just Married” photos together.  If the weather wasn’t good earlier in the day, the benefit this gives you is to have a second opportunity for portraits later.  And vice versa, if the weather wasn’t ideal in between the ceremony and reception for portraits, you will be SO happy you did that first look! 

I can’t begin to tell you, HOW many weddings I’ve done where we get to the bride/groom photos and the WEATHER IS NOT IDEAL and I think to myself, ohh the weather was PERFECT earlier, had they considered a first look!

If you enjoyed this blog, here are a few others you may consider.

https://belindajeanphotography.com/2019/03/18/the-most-photogenic-wedding-dress/

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