Lighting & locations DURING the wedding

The part of the day I feel like is talked about the least. I know I can’t control ALL situations for my clients, but there are things that you can do to set your photographer up for success (and make an impact on your final images) no matter the venue.


• What will lighting be like during the time of your ceremony? Will you both be in direct sunlight? Only one of you in the shade? Maybe before the wedding you can take a look at what the light is like OR research some imagery to see what to expect. Perhaps it means moving you both into the shade or tilting the ceremony set-up slightly so you’re not both squinting into the sun.

• Will there be anything above you or behind you? A gazebo, an arch, standing on a stage? Sometimes these things will play a part in what to expect with your images and if they are casting shadows or not.

• Is there enough space for me to walk around the perimeter of the ceremony space? If so, this will allow for a lot more variety in your final images (i.e. images of your parents, bridal party, etc.)


• What will the available lighting be? Is there any natural light or is it all ambient/ artificial light? If it’s all artificial light, perhaps we can improve this with adding hanging lights, candles or spot lights.

• If you’re getting married in a church, what are the photography restrictions? Some churches don’t allow photographers past the last pew and to never “cross the aisle”.

• Does your venue/church allow flash photography?


• What lighting are you providing during dinner? Hanging lights? Candles? All of these impact mood AND photos because they change the temperature in which I’m adjusting my white balance. Candlelight & hanging lights usually allow skin tones to feel warmer, whereas

• Where is the head table and what is behind you? i.e. is it a full set of speakers, a catering table or is it a nice clean background? I’d suggest double checking this just to see what will be IN the majority of your images.

• When people stand for speeches, will they be near you or standing at their seat? I prefer near you so I can get reactions of the both of you!

• Will the DJ be using any kind of uplighting or directional light during dances? If so, have your photographer connect with him or her to discuss options! No one likes spotted skin. :)

I will say, don’t let this stress you out! We can assimilate to most situations! That's the biggest benefit to hiring an experienced wedding photographer. Just share some details with your photographer (especially if they haven’t shot in this particular location before) to help them feel prepared and earn you great images in return!