Storey Wilkins Photography
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First Glance

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The Moment you see each other for the first time on your wedding day...The ‘first glance’ at your wedding.

What are the benefits and are there any special considerations?

Thankfully, the trend of brides and grooms seeing each other before the wedding has made the day so much richer for the couple themselves by enabling them to spend more time with their family and bridal party without inconveniencing their guests.

They get to spend more quality time at the cocktail party (otherwise seriously curtailed by a frantic and tiring photo shoot), and does it somehow ‘ruin’ the first look of the bride walking down the aisle? Not according to our brides and thousands of others. ‘It made it more special – not less’ said more than one bride.

The ability to have that personal, natural and often very private connection with each other before being thrust under the eyes of hundreds of people is both calming, centering and supremely joyful. For guys that might be worried about having their emotions get the better of them in front of an audience – this is a perfect solution.

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The subject of ‘tradition’ often comes up….and here’s the thing: In Jewish weddings, it is a long and very practical tradition for the groom and bride to meet beforehand. They have the gift of time in what is going to be a very busy day for both of them.

It’s worth looking at this in more detail:

In the reformed Jewish wedding, the bride and groom will get ready separately almost always with their respective bridal parties. The day starts early, in order to allow ample time for hair and makeup in the bride’s area – and multiple specialists to deal with those tasks. Similar in the groom's party, usually with lots of hilarious story-telling and fun….maybe a toast or two with that special single malt.

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Priorities are always with the bride and groom getting ready first. They have usually made a decision in discussion with us (the photographers) as to where. Our suggestions will always be based on two main considerations: what the lighting and background is like – and how private or public they want the moment to be.

Do they want just themselves, with the ‘photo-team’ as far back and unobtrusive as possible? Or is this a moment to be shared with parents watching, or parents and bridal party – both can be great – but it’s up to you. For parents, this can be a very rich moment in a day that just gets better. Either works.

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What Happens Right After?

The first glance merges into the portrait session with the bride and groom. This is followed by the bride's family photos with the bride and groom, followed by the groom's family. Often a time is added in to do a lovely group of each extended family with the bride and groom (brides side group – grooms side group).

Then it’s bridal party time with the bride and groom. The truly great thing about this method is that everything is done with the minimum of stress and fuss and not forced into a small time slot between the end of the wedding ceremony and the start of the reception.

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After all that, there is always time allowed for the bride and groom to rest before the first ceremony called the ‘Bedecken’. This beautiful small ceremony of close family and bridal party is followed by the main ceremony under the chuppah with all the guests. Imagine walking down the aisle, having a quiet rest, and knowing you have no other responsibilities for the next few hours except to enjoy the cocktail party fully – enter your wedding reception – and dance your feet off!

From the moment you finish your ‘official’ photographs before the wedding, we go into candid and documentary mode – recording all the action and joy of the rest of the day. All weddings benefit from this.

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Savoring the Moment

Your wedding could be thirty people in your parents backyard, or 300 people at the top downtown venue – having a private moment with your intended before the wedding is a blessing. It is repeated so often, but a wedding really does go so terribly fast. Before you know it – the day is done. It would be great to remember everything on that day with affection – rather than the parts that stressed you out.

Learn more about my wedding photography services and expertise.