Post # 1
Hi Bees! So I originally wanted a casual brunch wedding in our backyard because it’s going be on a Sunday and we’ll only have 50 guests. Ceremony at 11:30, reception from 12-3 was the plan. This would also save us money since we wouldn’t need outdoor lighting (a vendor quoted me $3,800 for lighting a 30×30 field with trussing, string lights and a generator).
However, my photographer told me taking photos in the morning can create shadows under eyes. She suggests that we take advantage of the Golden Hour which is 5-6pm in October. The timeline she recommends is ceremony at 3:30, reception at 4, couple portraits at 5:30 and the wedding ends at 7. I struggle to make a decision because 4pm doesn’t sound like a good time for neither lunch nor dinner. Also my makeup won’t look as flawless after eating. I’m just not sure what to do now. Can you please give me some advice or share your experiences with me? Thank you!
Post # 2
A qualified, experienced photographer should be able to figure out how to photograph people outside of one specific hour of the day.
Post # 3
I voted yes, but wanted to ask if you went ahead with the brunch schedule, could your photographer stay (or return) for photos in better light? And another thought – she could use a gold reflector if she has an assistant.
The shadow under the eye remark makes me wonder about her level of experience – flash has been invented LOL and she should be able to use a flash diffuser to fill in shadows.
Post # 4
You should not have to plan your entire wedding day around what’s easiest for the photographer. Any professional photographer should have lights and/or reflectors that will reduce shadows on the posed shots. If she’s worried about candids, so what if the photos accurately show that the sun was overhead? I would not change your plans.
Post # 5
What if you all ran behind in time and missed the golden hour? I wouldn’t change my timeline based on some photos at a specific time. You could always take photos of you and your hubby alone somewhere at that time if you’d like to make sure you get some good shots. We did that and it was awesome!
Post # 6
There’s a golden hour in the morning, too. It would involve you waking up pretty early for hair and makeup, but you could do some amazing first look shots. I wouldn’t change your ceremony and reception time, but maybe would change your photographer? The right photographer will find the appropriate locations and use the right equipment to deal with the shadows. I love shooting in golden hour as much as the next person, but she should be able to do any time of day properly. What if it rains or is cloudy? Golden hour is out, but you’ll still want beautiful photos. On my wedding day, I had gorgeous family photos taken at noon (typically worst time of day for photos) because my photographer found a gorgeous full tree that gave us complete shade and even lighting.
Post # 7
I agree with the other pp’s post. I think you should look into another photographer. I good photographer would know how to handle that situation. It wouldn’t be a situation. Please have weddings and get married all the time in different lighting and settings. Keep looking.
Post # 8
At first I read this as, Should I have golden shower photos. WTF is wrong with me?
Post # 9
Thanks so much everyone for your comments! The photographer is actually the mother of a friend of mine. She’s definitely professional and I do love her works so I don’t feel like hiring some else. The thing is she’s never been to our property. We own 5 acres of land so there are probably some well-shaded areas that are great for photos. I’m going to invite her to come over one morning and hopefully we’ll find some good spots because I’d like to stick to my casual brunch idea.
Post # 10
Alternatively, you can shoot photos during the golden hour in the morning, which is just after sunrise.
Where I am that would be around 7 am right now (in October). Then afterward you can refresh your make up and have your morning brunch wedding!
Post # 11
Photographs taken outdoors during noon and early afternoon aren’t the best photographs. Try googling it, it isn’t something “made up” and no, “a good photographer can make any hour work” is just bs. The sun will be on top of your heads so obviously shadows under your eyes. Well shaded areas may be too shaded where the light angles aren’t appropriate either.
Early morning (before the sun is strong) and late afternoon are the best times to shoot, aka the golden hours.
Why not invite her to your property and let her try out a few shots during your preferred time? That way she can find out if she can work around the sun issue.
Post # 12
If you want to help her get the best pics of you, go and scout the area. This means take pictures in various locations you are considering, and in each picture include the time and direction of the shot (NSEW). You can use an app for this pretty easily.
because yes, golden hour is the best time and while a photographer can make anything work, they often require a crew to do so. Does she have an assistant to hold bounce cards and gold reflectors? Is she bringing a generator for lights and moving them to each location? I don’t see this kind of equipment being hauled around a wedding normally, though money can solve any problem.
If it were me and this were a family friend and I had your time constraints, I’d do a shoot at golden hour unrelated to the actual day. Fresh make up, no stress, etc.
Post # 13
Wedding photographer here. Yes, 11:30am is a nightmare time for a wedding ceremony from a lighting photographer’s perspective. From a guest perspective it’s not any better to sit out in the blazing sun either.
I’ve got a lot of years of experience under my belt and can shoot in any conditions…and most of my weddings are on the beach in some of the harshest conditions ever. We bring an arsenal of lighting to all our weddings – most specifically for sunset and reception lighting. You have to remember that while I keep a flash on the camera and use it when necessary, you can only do but so much during a ceremony. On top of that, I need my assitant to position and hold lighting. My assistant can’t be standing up at the front holding a reflector during your ceremony, and our lights during a ceremony are only reaching but so far. Do we make it work, of course, but it’s not like they are amazing results.
If she’s concerned, she should go scout out the property and decline the job if she feels it’s out of her realm of experience.
Post # 14
I voted ‘yes’ just because golden hour photos are SO pretty, and pictures last a lot longer than the ceremony. But obviously it’s not my wedding. Good luck 🙂
Post # 15
I don’t think you should change your entire wedding vision just for the photos. And I agree that 4 is a funny time to eat unless it’s afternoon tea (which could also be nice, but it’s not what you wanted). My sister had a morning wedding so her photos were done at like 9-10, in full sun on the beach, and they are beautiful! So it definitely can be done.