Planning and coordinating a bridal portrait session is a favorite event most Southern Bride’s look forward to when buying their dress, selecting a bridal bouquet of beautiful fresh flowers, glittering jewelry, perfect make up and hair style and a photographer to capture it all. The completed professional framed portrait is usually set up on an easel at the wedding reception for friends and family to enjoy.
What purpose does a bridal portrait serve?
There are many benefits to planning and preparing for a bridal portrait session. It allows the bride to see her wedding ensemble all together and be able to change or tweak elements that may need attention so that her wedding day will flow effortlessly.
Traditionally, they were used as wedding announcements in the local newspapers (announcing the newly married couple), but engagement photos and/or a photo of the bride and groom are more common photography sessions today. Bridal sessions give brides an opportunity to have a formal portrait of themselves in their wedding gown, without the rush and hustle of a wedding day.
What are some ways a bride can prepare for her bridal portrait?
A bride must contact and coordinate with many professionals for this portrait date. The photographer, makeup artist, hair stylist, florist and venue manager must all be contacted and a date agreed upon that will work well for everyone’s schedule.
When should a bride have her bridal portrait taken in regards to her wedding timeline?
Several factors can determine when bridal sessions are scheduled. If you’ve ordered your dress, you need to make sure you allow plenty of time for it to come in and alterations to be made. If you’re planning on having a photo on display at the wedding reception, you need to communicate with your photographer and make sure you have plenty of time to choose and order a print or canvas and have it framed prior to the wedding. I highly recommend scheduling your session 1 to 2 months before their wedding.
Where should a bride have her bridal portraits taken?
I believe in taking your portraits somewhere that might be significant to you, like your college campus, the park you grew up playing at, maybe at the church your parents got married. I think it’s best to take your portraits somewhere other than your wedding venue. You’ll have some many photos from that place on your wedding day.
*If you are arranging for your bridal portraits to be taken at an inside venue (could be a good idea if it is going to be either roasting or freezing outside), keep in mind that the more natural light, the better.
*If you plan to have your bridal portraits taken at an outside location, remember that the weather is fickle and the light changes from season to season.
*If the location you have chosen has strong sentimental value to you, make sure you explain this to your photographer.
What about the wedding dress? How is it kept clean and new when the bridal portrait is being taken?
Of course, you’ll want to keep them as clean as possible, but it doesn’t always require that the dress never touch the ground. I’ve seen brides bring sheets to keep underneath their dress, and if you’re going out in the middle of a field on a farm, this might be helpful, but if you’re staying indoors, it’s unnecessary and can slow your session down. Sometimes, dresses do get a little dirty, but typically it’s only the underneath edges, which will never really show up in pictures or on the wedding day, and it can always be cleaned prior to your wedding. The best thing to do to keep your dress clean is to pick it up when you walk, and be sure your hands are clean.