Wedding days. Anyone who has been married knows what a thrill weddings are. The day starts a little more relaxed, the bride hanging out with her bridesmaids, sipping champagne and getting ready, while the groom and his groomsmen maybe play a nice round of golf. Then, as the day starts to advance, the ceremony gets closer, and the nerves start. Its such a big day, and there are so many eyes all on you. Imagine being a groom, standing up at the alter. Clammy hands, shaky fingers, nervous smiles, anxiously awaiting the sight of his bride. And then you finally see her, and she's even more stunning and gorgeous than you even thought possible. Tears might fill your eyes as she slowly walks closer and closer. But then, as she comes to you, you can't talk or hug or kiss her for maybe up to an hour. Then, after the ceremony, bride and groom pictures are a little rushed, knowing friends and family are waiting at the reception.
This is why I love first looks. It has all of the emotion and excitement of seeing your bride for the first time in her dress, but its so much more intimate. Its just you two and the photographer. You have time to hug, and cry, and kiss, and talk. The one person who can calm your nerves, will be able to do just that before you have to stand in front of a room full of people. After taking your time to embrace and say hello, you can easily go into romantic bride and groom photos. Since you can schedule the first look as far in advance as you would like, you have a stress free time to take photos together. No awaiting guests, no coordinator or DJ saying "Five more minutes!" The scene can be set up with a gorgeous background, and in great lighting, allowing for truly beautiful, emotion filled photos. You just couldn't get photos like this during a ceremony.
Thank you SO MUCH to Josiah Gentry Photography for letting me assist him with this wedding at Frederik Meijer Gardens here in Grand Rapids, Michigan. I had so much photographing this beautiful couple. Congratulations Lisa and Colby!