I do really love them AND my business!! It still blows my mind that it's my job to capture and be part of so many wonderful celebrations. It's basically a dream come true. Every wedding is different and has different needs, energy, time, planning etc. So the way in which I prepare for each wedding is different, and I'm betting there's more to it than you think!
For starters, gear: The obvious one, all of the cameras, accessories and tools I bring with me for the day. Preparing my gear involves a trillion things including charging a lifetime supply of batteries (seriously, good luck finding an outlet in my house the day before a wedding) cleaning lenses, formatting memory cards, organizing my backpack, choosing accessories and additional gear depending on the wedding. It also includes ensuring I am prepared for all types of weather with a change of clothes and shoes (just in case). If I'm photographing an elopement or somewhere a little wilder, I am also packing travel friendly snacks and safety gear.
Next is the detail side of things. I review my notes from our meetings, your questionnaires and our emails. I do a final check of your timeline, save files to my phone and review my plans for the day. I set new goals and inspirations for my images at each wedding to ensure variety, surprises and growth. I will review the location and details of the suns path on the day. I review my routes, maps and driving plan. I'll look over any images I have if I've photographed your venue previously, otherwise I will have a look online at images of the space(s) before scoping it out early in person on the big day. I'll have a look at the weather and review any backup and alternative plans.
The next part is the mental part and honestly, just as important as the other two. Believe it or not, being a wedding photographer is a a lot more than just taking photos. It's recognizing energy and being able to direct your own, its anticipating moments and needs, staying organized, planning ahead, shifting at a moments notice, being a friend, hype person, comfort and sense of direction on a busy day. I take my job seriously and preparing myself to provide the best service and images requires thoughtfulness, downtime, leisure, nutrition and lots of rest. It requires me to envision your day, dream big and decide in which ways I can contribute to the day of your dreams.
On the day of your wedding I'm focused and ready to get to work. I always arrive early to explore spaces, choose photo locations and observe the vibe of the day before jumping in.
I truly summon all that I have to make your day excellent. Catch me post wedding, a literal lifeless potato, lol. I'm picturing that girl from the commercial in the 90's who was deflated on the couch. I think it was an anti drug commercial haha, but still- you get the picture. It's an accurate depiction. Add a pizza and some spicy water and that is a literal photo of me. Although, I do have a family and I usually spend the day after a wedding in nature with them. I'll find myself outdoors in the forest or in the water returning my nervous system slowly to its version of a normal state (lol) after these energy filled days. It's a lot- and I wouldn't have it any other way. My semi-reclusive lifestyle allows me to rejuvenate in solitude, the way I need to in order prepare for the next event.
But seriously.. the leg bruises from my cameras on the holster, the blisters, backaches, and sunburns, mountains of emails and hours of editing are 100% worth it. I'm in love with my job and I'm always genuinely excited to go to work. What more could you ask for?
Well, what started out as a "how I prepare for weddings" became more of a ramble and I'm ok with it. That could be a common theme in this blog because it's kind of how I am in person *shrug*
Bottom line is I love what I do and being prepared is a huge part of being a wedding photographer. I'll keep doing it all, for y'all - don't you ever worry! :)
Your wedding photographer (AKA : Professional Dress Handler, Chauffeur, Boutonnière Pinner, Family Wrangler, Timeline Master, Deep Breath Director)