the creative eye behind the camera and the heart behind every photograph. I believe in capturing moments that transcend time and tell beautiful stories of love, life, and connection.
My passion for photography was ignited by the love of my life, and I've been on a journey ever since, freezing cherished moments in time for amazing couples like you. Join me on this adventure as we explore the artistry of life and love through the lens.
As a professional wedding photographer, embracing the joy of first looks is something I teach all my brides! My favorite moment from wedding days that enhances the wedding experience and creates lasting memories is the magical moment of the first look. Brides, let me guide you through several benefits that come with this intimate tradition, allowing you to savor every precious moment on your special day!
BONUS: I’m going to show you first look reactions AND ceremony reactions throughout the blog so I can prove a point!
Opting for a first look on your wedding day opens the door to a world of cherished moments with your fiance. Instead of stealing mere minutes of alone time after the ceremony, a first look grants you several precious hours! Those stolen glances and whispered promises can be shared in a relaxed, intimate atmosphere, away from the hustle and bustle of the ceremony and reception. These hours are a sanctuary of togetherness, allowing you both to revel in the love you share and build the excitement for the vows you’re about to exchange.
One of the most significant advantages of opting for a first look is the practical aspect – all your portraits can be completed before the ceremony even begins! This means you’ll have more time to enjoy the festivities with your loved ones.
Yes, you’ll want to sneak away for a few minutes at golden hour for a few extra portraits in the golden glow, but instead of having to do family portraits and full bridal party portraits AND bride and groom portraits after the ceremony (which can take up to 2 hours), you can have all of that done prior to the ceremony and just take 15-20 minutes to take golden hour portraits as husband and wife! This means you could actually join your reception within 30 minutes of your ceremony ending! Thanks to a first look, there’s no need to rush through portrait sessions during cocktail hour when you can mingle with your guests and truly be present in every moment.
Who doesn’t love a good party? With the first look, you can kickstart your reception festivities much sooner! I’m talking 1.5 to 2 hours sooner! By wrapping up your portraits before the ceremony, you ensure a smooth transition from the ‘I do’s to the dance floor. Your guests will appreciate not having to wait, and you can start celebrating your union right away. It’s a win-win situation that ensures the party begins promptly, allowing everyone to revel in the joyous atmosphere you’ve created. You deserve a drink anyway!
When you choose a first look, you’re not limited to rushed, time-sensitive photo sessions because the sun is setting after the ceremony. That’s one of the scariest things as a photographer when there is no first look, the ceremony time is very close to sun set, and you have family, full bridal party, AND bride and groom portraits to get through before it’s pitch black outside! This can feel extremely rushed and chaotic, and no one wants to feel that way on their wedding day.
Having a first look, you can explore different locations, experiment with various poses, and capture a wide array of emotions. From laughter to tears of joy, these moments are the essence of your love story. With the pressure of time lifted, your photographer can focus on creating timeless images that truly reflect your relationship, resulting in a stunning wedding gallery that you’ll cherish for a lifetime.
Lastly, there’s something incredibly intimate about the first look. In this private moment, it’s just the two of you, free to express your emotions openly and without reservation. With no audience watching, you can let your guard down completely, allowing your true feelings to shine through. The authenticity of these moments is unparalleled, creating images that radiate with the depth of your love and commitment.
It’s easy to think that by doing a first look, the “magic” walking down the aisle will be gone, but let me just tell you… Every single first look I have shot did NOT take away from the bride walking down the aisle. Most of my grooms actually cried a second time while she walked down the aisle because his nerves were completely gone! Let this be an encouragement to you that first looks do not take away from that special moment when you lock eyes together for the first time during the ceremony.
Throughout the blog, you could see the emotion on the grooms’ faces during BOTH the first look and the ceremony. I 100% believe that the majority of grooms would choose a first look solely based on just the few photos I shared! They were all SO emotional during BOTH moments. First looks don’t take away the magic, I promise! 🙂
In conclusion, the first look isn’t just a trend. It’s a transformative experience that enhances your wedding day in ways you might not expect. By embracing the joy of first looks, you gift yourselves the luxury of time, the joy of uninterrupted celebration, and the freedom to be vulnerable together. As your wedding photographer, my goal is to capture these beautiful moments, ensuring that your love story is told with authenticity and passion.
So, brides-to-be, I encourage you to embrace a first look and see it as more than just a photo opportunity. It’s a chance to create memories that will be etched in your hearts forever – moments of genuine connection, uninhibited joy, and unfiltered love. Embrace the power of the first look, and let your wedding day unfold in the most magical and unforgettable way possible.
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Brooke Elliott is a fine art wedding photographer located in Nashville TN. Brooke's photography style is full of beautiful sunlight that gives photos a true to color and timeless look.
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