If you are planning a wedding, I am sure the thought of doing a first look has crossed your mind. The debate between seeing your partner before the ceremony or waiting until the ceremony to see one another can be taunting. Which is the right choice?

Before I go any further, let me explain what a first look is. A first look is a new and modern trend where the couple has the opportunity to see one another before the wedding ceremony. One person is usually positioned looking away out over the golf course, by the willow trees , or someplace with a beautiful back drop. Then, their partner will meet them and they see each other for the first time on their wedding day. This very intimate and highly anticipated moment is captured by the photographer and videographer. Photographers usually “tell the story” by capturing photos of one partner approaching the other, and then both of their expressions are captured as they see each other for the first time simultaneously. Sure, its superstition that it is bad luck to see one another before the ceremony. Even non superstitious couples wrangle with the idea of having a first look. However, many couples are beginning to understand the benefits.

A major perk of a first look is the time management benefits. The photographer can complete the portrait sessions before the ceremony – this includes pictures of the couple, wedding party, and family pictures. It often allows for much flexibility and gives you more options with the wedding day timeline and photo opportunities. And since most of the pictures are already completed, the couple can attend some, if not all, of their cocktail hour.

Of course the time that is saved because of a first look is a very nice benefit. But in my opinion, there is a greater reason why a first look is a wonderful idea. When you see your loved one before the ceremony, you are immersed into a very emotional moment in a way that you can’t experience at a ceremony. You can enjoy this time privately and really connect in a meaningful way. This results in some amazing and genuine photos. Check out some examples below.


Zen Photography


Erin Peters Photography


Tina Elizabeth Photography


Windcatcher Photography

Many people fear that by doing a first look, the excitement and anticipation is diminished when you see one another walking down the aisle. But it does just the opposite- it doesn’t take away the magic from ceremony, it adds to it and gives you another unique moment of the day to experience. The personal and quality time the couple spends together tends to ramp up and fuel the emotion, as well as ease anxiety, for when it is actually time to walk down the aisle. The couple can enjoy and savor that first moment of seeing one another on their wedding day without all the guests watching.

Everyone always says “Your wedding day will go so fast!”, and this is not an overstatement. We want you to live in the moment and not just relive it through the photos. We want you to be present with your guests. There is so much activity and things to accomplish on your wedding day that sometimes sitting back and taking it all in can be difficult.  A first look gives you the opportunity to enjoy time with your new husband or wife, as well as engage with the people you love the most and truly relax and enjoy the entire day.