First looks are all the craze right now in the wedding industry. I'll be honest, it's one wedding trend that I hope sticks around for a long time! In case you don't know what a first look is, it's where the bride and groom see each other before the wedding ceremony. If you're the super traditional type, maybe you're not so inclined to see your significant other before the ceremony, though I do see some traditional couples having a first look because the pros tend to outweigh the cons.
One of the main reasons couples choose to have a first look is because it essentially gives built in "you" time during the wedding day. From start to finish, a couple is surrounded by a crowd of people. No wonder the day becomes a blur and the couple hardly remembers much from the wedding. There's no time to slow down and take it all in. A first look allows you to do that. I mean, a timeline is constructed to include this time with just the bride and groom because of it's importance. I've photographed enough weddings to know that f it's not on the timeline, it's probably not going to happen. So already having this built into your day gives you some cool photos and some private moments to reflect on your day and be thankful through all the mayhem!
Since I mentioned timeline, it's definitely worth noting that a first look with your significant other can help the day run more smoothly. Let's face it, taking pictures on your wedding day can be work. In a traditional wedding setting, you're being pulled away from the crowd to get the must have shots of the day. And not just being pulled away from the crowd, but this happens during the most exciting time of the wedding day - right after you said, "I do" and all of your family and friends want to congratulate you. Instead of greeting your guests, you have to leave that exciting setting and go spend a couple of hours taking photos. But when you have a first look, the day flows better because you can get your bridal party photos out of the way, leaving some time to greet guests before your family formal shots.
Aside from slowing your wedding day down, I have to talk about the obvious pro of having a first look - extra photos of you and your significant other! These aren't just any photos either, they're usually full of emotion and excitement. If you're a lover of candid photos, you'd love having a first look for that reason alone!
I keep referring to the bride and groom in talking about a first look, but there are other first looks that are happening more often during a wedding day and I love it! I've seen first looks with the bride and her dad, the bride and her brothers, the bride and her son and the bride with her bridesmaids. I've seen first looks with the groom and his mother. Like the first look with the bride and groom, these other first looks are very emotional and full of smiles and excitement. It's an easy way to shake the wedding ceremony jitters and relax!
If you're interested in reading more benefits to having a first look, I wrote about it before and you can read that blog here.
As with any other aspect of your wedding, you should choose to have a first look if it's right for you. Not everyone feels comfortable with doing a first look, no matter how beneficial it can be for the flow of your wedding day. As a photographer, I encourage my couples to have a first look if they're open to it, but more than that, I encourage them to do what is best for them, even if that means no first look. This is your day afterall! :]