(Closed) Pictures before or pictures after? That is the questions

posted 7 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
13889 posts
Honey Beekeeper
  • Wedding: November 1999

We did the photos before – and we did a first look, just like you suggested. It was really fantastic, because we actually got to be part of our cocktail hour and enjoy being with our guests rather than leaving to take pictures somewhere.

Post # 4
4494 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

We’re doing ours before. I guess it could affect the wow factor of me walking down the aisle, but honestly I think seeing each other for the first time and sharing that moment with no one else around will be so much more romantic and intimate. Like the above poster, we also want to attend our cocktail hour and spend that time with our guests.

Post # 5
922 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

@krissyb420:  I feel the same way you do!  We are doing separate bride/groom photos beforehand and a first look (about an hour for all).  Then we are doing a few family photos and the bride/groom photos after the ceremony during our cocktail hour.  I have a very specific, limited list of photo shots for my photographer in order to keep it quick, on time, and efficient.  We are planning on about 40 min for photos after the ceremony, just enough time for guests to have a few drinks and conversations before dinner.  Keep your photo list short and make sure you get all the shots you really want.  I crossed out all the ones that I would never put up in frames around the house (like the men holding me, my mother zipping me in my dress, etc.).

Post # 6
7607 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: June 2013

We did a first look and I would recommend doing it. We got to hang out with each other most of the day instead of being “hidden away” and it was still very special walking down the aisle. We also got to spend more time on pictures and more time with our families and friends after. It was pretty much a win win for us!

Post # 7
9525 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2013

@krissyb420:  we are doing the first look and then immediate family and wedding party photos before the ceremony.

then Fi and I will go to our room to relax and have some moments of peace and quiet, the hotel will bring us hor’dourves and drinks.  then we will join the cocktail hour for the last 15 minutes.  we will take a few extended family pics.

then time for the reception.

this timeline works best for us.


Post # 8
326 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: November 2012

We didn’t do a first look as my hubby was opposed to it! However I have read lots of the blogger bees here who did it, as well as spoken to some people who did it that were really thankful.

The reason I wanted to do photos before the ceremony was the same as yours! We were having a cocktail type hour and I really wanted to go mingle with our guests rather than taking more photos. But in the end we did an improptru receiving line at the church after the ceremony and I made a point to try to go around to every table and speak to all the guests, so it worked out for the best! And some of my favourite photos actualyl come from that hour my hubby and I had alone while our guests were inside enjoying food and drinks!

In regards to your mum’s position, I think you are trying to convince yourself that what you are doing is right! You just said she had no monetary input and if thats the case then its all up to you! At the end of the day its your wedding! Some of my favourite photos from blogger bees are the first looks! (Go check out Mrs Glovevs, she only just posted hers, or Mrs Sword) They are really intimate and loving, and most grooms don’t think it takes anything about when you walk down the aisle! The walk is what generates the emotions, the fact you are about to marry your loved one, not the fact they are seeing you in a white dress for the first time

I hope this helps 🙂

Post # 9
1877 posts
Buzzing bee

@krissyb420:  I am with you on this, only it is my fiancé who is against taking first look photos.  I want to do a first look, but he wants to be surprised, so no first look.  I am just going to get all of our individual portraits done beforehand.

Post # 10
396 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2013

i did my picture before the ceremony and loved it. Once the wedding started it was full speed. I don’t think i could have found time for pictures after that. If you don’t want to do the first look with your husband, I’ve seen it where the bride does it with her father. It’s a beautiful father/daughter moment. 

Post # 11
327 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2013

We are doing a first look (time alloted is 35 minutes to include some bride/groom pics) and then 90 minutes of immediate family and bridal party pics. 

Fiance originally was against the first look but came around when I told him if we did all the pics during cocktail hour, we would have to spend a lot of our reception going around to tables to talk to guests rather than enjoying the reception and partying (and eating). 

We’re still going to do an additional 20 minutes of bride/groom ‘just married’ pics right after the ceremony.  So we’ll have 40 minutes at cocktail hour to mingle with our guests. 🙂

For me the pictures are super important. I want lots of pics of just us and fam & bridal party pics.. so doing photos beforehand gives us lots of time for that while after would have only been 1 hour, period. 

The pictures are the only thing (besides video) that you really get to take away from the day! 

Post # 12
3562 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2013

We are doing all the separate pictures we can before the ceremony, and then doing pictures together during cocktail hour.  We are having a sparkler send off, so a little before that, Fiance and I are going to sneak out for a few minutes and have some couple pics taken and get some cool pics playing with the sparklers.  We’ll probably do our last dance song and send off shortly after that, and a good chunk of our guests will already be gone by then because our reception in going to be until 11:30pm. 

Post # 13
1108 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: October 2013

I had basically the same converstation with my mom, stepmom and Future Mother-In-Law that you had with your mom.  None of them really understood the first look concept (we are doing one) so I really took the time to explain it, and showed them pictures our photographer has done of other couples doing a first look.  After that, they understood it.  If you want to do photos before, I would suggest helping your mom understand that it can be its own wow factor, so she will be on-board, but at the end of the day it should be your call.

Post # 14
6518 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

@krissyb420:  We aren’t doing pictures before for a few reasons, we are both against it. THe other reason is because we are going to have a 2 hr gap after the ceremony is over. So in that 2 hrs we hope to get most of our pictures done so we can enjoy our cocktail hour. Our wedding is super local- the church is 3 blocks from my house, and the reception is less than a mile from the church, so we will definitely get a lot done.

Post # 16
189 posts
Blushing bee

And if you dont want a first look with groom, I was in a wedding that did bride with bridesmaids and groom with groomsmen,only bride, only groom. After the ceremony they did pics together. It worked out very well. Guests didnt wait long and bride and groom were able to enjoy themselves.

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