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5+ Reasons to Do A First Look on Your Wedding Day

Jan 25, 2022

If you’re planning a wedding, you may be wondering if doing a first look is right for you. In this blog post, we will discuss the benefits of doing a first look on your wedding day.

Many couples choose to do a first look because it allows them to have some privacy before the ceremony and take amazing photographs together.

Additionally, first looks can help reduce stress levels before the ceremony. If you’re on the fence about whether or not to do a first look, read on for more reasons why it might be the best decision for you!

Chicago wedding first look

“I highly recommend doing a first look on your wedding day! Ours was extremely special and ended up being one of my favorite moments of the day by far.
It allowed us to start the day focussing on the most important aspect of the wedding, our partnership. Plus, it made the rest of the day much more joyful because we were able to do it all together as a team!” – Elizabeth 2021 Bride

What is a wedding “first look”?

The first look is when a couple sees each other for the first time on their wedding day. This intimate moment typically makes for an emotional photo opportunity and lots of smiles.

5+ Reasons to Do A First Look on Your Wedding Day

It used to be a significant tradition to wait until the “big moment” for the groom before seeing the bride in her big white gown. Many couples still believe it’s important to keep the dramatic “reveal.”

Now, I do not believe it is my job to change the minds of clients who are firmly committed to waiting to see each other when they walk down the aisle. However, if you are still unsure or on the fence about what first-look wedding photos means, we can help you make an informed decision.

1. It Is A Private Moment

It’s going to be an emotional day and it will fly by quicker than you can imagine. Taking a few moments to yourself before the festivities begin is a wonderful opportunity to hug, kiss, cry, and share your excitement with one another without having to worry about all your friends and family staring at you. Although Caleb and I will be there snapping photos, the moment is intimate and allows for a more genuine interaction. You’ll love that you have photos from this moment after the event is over!

2. First Looks Can Help You Relax

One of the main benefits of doing a first look is that it can help you relax before the ceremony. Instead of standing in line at the altar, worrying about whether or not you’re going to trip on your dress, you’ll be able to take some time for yourself with your fiance.

This can be really helpful in reducing stress levels and allowing you to enjoy your wedding day.

3.You’ll Be Able to Remember and Focus on Your Ceremony Better

You might find that the ceremony is less stressful and more memorable if you set aside a time for the joy and excitement of being together on your wedding day.

Chicago wedding first look

4. You’ll Be Able to Attend Your Cocktail Hour

If you have a later ceremony time, we can take all the wedding party portraits before the ceremony. Then, after the ceremony, we can take the posed family formals prior to you being able to attend your cocktail hour. The more time you have with your guests the better! A “first look” is a great idea if you want to attend your cocktail hour.

5. We Can Take Advantage of Beautiful Lighting – Especially for Winter Weddings

If you get married in winter, when days are shorter and it’s dark by the end of the ceremony, you will have fewer photo opportunities. We get it. It’s not our job to make you change your mind about whether or not to have a “first look.” It is our job as wedding photographers to help you set realistic expectations. If we don’t have the time to take bride and groom portraits before dark, but you love that “magic hour,” then we are in a bit trouble. You will have to accept that you will only get nighttime photos of you both, and that your photographer may need to use flash to take family portraits.

6. Avoid Photo Fatigue

There is a term called “photography fatigue.” Even with our natural, non-obtrusive approach to photography, you are technically still “posing for photographs” with your family, wedding party, and yourself. Many couples eventually get tired of it. We get it! We don’t want you running around the venue after the ceremony. A “first look” is a great idea if you want keep the photos to a minimum following the ceremony.

7. Spend more time with each other.

You will see each other more often during the day!! It’s your wedding day –  you should spend most of the day together!! A “first look” is a wonderful way to spend more time together and provide additional opportunities for beautiful imagery.

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8. You’ll Get Amazing Photographs

Another great reason to do a first look is that you’ll get some amazing photographs. First looks are often done outdoors, which provides the perfect backdrop for stunning photos.

You and your fiancé will be able to enjoy some time together without any of your guests around, which will make for some really intimate photos.

Chicago wedding first look Chicago wedding first look Chicago wedding first look

9. You’ll Avoid the Wedding Day Rush

If you choose to do a first look, you’ll avoid the wedding day rush. Instead of running around trying to get ready for the ceremony, you’ll be able to take your time and relax.

This can be really helpful if you’re feeling overwhelmed or stressed about the day’s events. Taking some time for yourself before the ceremony will help ensure that you’re calm and collected when it’s time to walk down the aisle.

10. You Get to Talk to Each Other

When you do a first look you can talk to each other! You can hug, kiss, laugh, and give each other all the best compliments! During the ceremony, you will have to just talk with your eyes and then reserve all your thoughts until after the ceremony.

Final Thoughts

Overall, there are many reasons why doing a first look may be the best decision for you and your fiance. If you’re looking for a way to relax before the ceremony and take some amazing photographs, a first look might be right for you! For more information, be sure to contact your wedding planner or photographer. They will be able to help you plan the perfect first look for your big day.

pink flowers for Chicago winter wedding


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