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Hi there! Welcome to the blog, a journal about my life, weddings, portraits, our home, and more. Stay a while and say hello!

I'M JESSICA!

The First Look | Tips for Jess Brides

Wedding Tips

So I know y’all are probably thinking to yourselves, haven’t we read this before? Hasn’t she talked about this before? Well, the answer is yes. However, I don’t think the last blog post I did last year on this did the topic any justice, so here we are. First looks are AMAZING and I decided I needed to reiterate that. The main reason I’ve found that my couples decide not to do a first look is because it isn’t very “traditional” and they think that is the worst thing they can do on their wedding day. I know where they are coming from when they’re thinking this because they think they won’t get a reaction from their man when he sees her coming down the aisle for the first time. I want that too, but I know first hand how much a first look can calm both of those nerves down and create an even BETTER reaction during that moment. If these images themselves and the emotion inside of them don’t convince you enough to have a first look, keep reading..

From my past brides, it has always been such a debate on whether or not they should do a first look. The funny part is, it usually comes down to the guy deciding and not the girl! How crazy is that?! 

My past clients who have decided to have a first look loved them because:

  1. You get extra portraits of the two of you during this time and no one else is around disturbing you. It’s a little time to calm down together and get even MORE excited to say “I do” in just a few short moments! This time frame allows you to get 1/3 MORE portraits than you would if you opted out because it gives you more time together! There’s only so many pictures you can take during cocktail hour (hence the key word: hour). During cocktail hour, we have to get family formals, bridal party, cocktail hour, AND the bride + groom portraits and that’s only an hour to do all of that!! The bride + groom usually end up telling us to get everything else and we only have sunset portraits for the two of them (which is about 15 minutes)! With a first look, you’re getting your money’s worth and that alone would be reason enough for me to do one. If I paid all of this money for wedding pictures, I would want as many as humanly possible. 

2. You get time alone with your loved one. You usually don’t get any time alone with each other on your wedding day and this is literally the biggest and most emotional day of your life. Wouldn’t you want to be able to be alone with each other just for a few minutes to get excited and tell each other how amazing they look?! Most people don’t even think about it, but when the bride walks down the aisle, two things tend to happen. 1) The groom is overwhelmed and doesn’t even know how to react. 2) The groom tries to act ‘cool’ and has NO REACTION at all because a million people are watching him. Having a first look can prevent this because he gets to see you up close and in person and get to see all of the little details to your ensemble without the pressure of a million eyes on him. 

3. It calms your nerves. Grooms are not normally fans of first looks because they think they are breaking an unspoken law, but every single one of my grooms who went through with the first looks have testified that they felt a lot more relaxed and not as nervous when he saw his bride walking down the aisle. It even made them MORE excited to see them and felt like it gave them more room to have a better reaction! 

July 29, 2015

  1. Christa Settle

    July 29th, 2015 at 9:03 pm

    This is such a good post for brides who are debating on having a first look! These first looks are such beautiful moments!!

  2. Bethanne Arthur

    July 30th, 2015 at 12:11 am

    I love first looks! The raw emotion that gets captured is just hard to beat!

  3. Alexandra Peterson

    July 30th, 2015 at 1:13 am

    Love first looks, too! Great advice for your brides and grooms!!

  4. Alicia

    July 30th, 2015 at 1:51 am

    Great info for prospective brides! And the images are beautiful!

  5. Chantal

    July 30th, 2015 at 2:05 am

    there is nothing I love more then first looks!! Amazing!

  6. Maureen

    July 30th, 2015 at 1:53 pm

    Love all of the 1st look reactions! Beautiful!

  7. Kristina Marie

    July 30th, 2015 at 2:38 pm

    These moments are so sweet!

  8. Oana

    July 30th, 2015 at 5:55 pm

    First looks are timeless and allow for such a personal moment between the bride and groom. These are great tips for perspective brides, thanks for sharing. Love your images!

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