Living in Hawaii means that wedding industry professionals see weddings in many shapes and forms. Intimate elopements, small weddings, large weddings, adventure weddings – seriously, we see it all. Since I’ve transitioned to my wedding packages, I often hear couples say they don’t want getting ready shots. But I’m here to tell you why getting ready photos are important.
why getting ready shots are important
Because I’m a former language arts teacher, I like to relate to things in metaphors. So, here ya go.
A wedding without getting ready shots would be like…
…fast-forwarding a really good movie to the high point without having any background context.
…skipping dinner to go straight to dessert.
…jumping into an ice-cold lake without dipping a toe in first to test the temperature.
…drinking 3 glasses of wine on an empty stomach.
…showing up to summer camp on the second to last day and wondering why you aren’t fitting in.
and my favorite
…skipping the first 4 chapters of a book and then frantically trying to understand what the heck is happening, and who is Bob? and why is he important? and what is even happening???
From a Photographer’s perspective
From a photographer’s point of view, getting ready is incredibly important because it lays the context for your story. I show up, get to hang out with you for a few hours during hair and makeup/bro-bonding time. I watch your friends laugh with you. I watch your mom look at you through the hotel room door as you get your makeup done – and I recognize that look (the one where she’s choking back tears).
I watch you take shots with your groomsmen. I laugh with you at the inside joke that’s behind the groomsmen’s gifts. Or, ya know, remember that time that you thought you grabbed a water bottle and went to go put it in the iron and it turned out to be a bottle of vodka? THAT was hilarious.
All these moments happen when you’re hanging out with people who matter the most. When else in your life do you get to have photos of you and your friends just enjoying each other’s company?
And by the time the ceremony rolls around, you’ve forgotten that I’m there. I’ve become such a part of your wedding day schema that I can get close. And even more importantly: you’re comfortable with me getting close.
For couples with a larger wedding
Getting ready for both the bride and groom tells the story of your day. You’ll look back at those photos years from now and remember those few hours before you tied the knot. Who was with you, who helped you into your dress, who helped you with your tie (or did you have to YouTube it?) – all of it matters.
Sometimes in life, we get so caught up in the BIG moments that we forget the little ones that happen along the way. And believe me, those are the ones you want to remember.
For couples who are eloping
You aren’t exempt from this either. Just because you don’t have friends and family to share this time with, you have one another. Maybe you’re making pancakes in the morning. Maybe you’re taking a dip in the pool before you throw on your dress and hike to a cliff. All of it should be documented.
And here’s the thing: your family back home has FOMO. They want to know every last detail about your wedding day because they were not there to share it with you. To show them a complete story, from getting ready to the ceremony to romantics, to your intimate dinner together – is a gift to your future selves AND your family members.
My promise to you: you won’t regret having me there to document these moments. Because telling the whole story is always better than telling the abbreviated version.