Tips and Photos by Niki Baldwin Photography
Our ZB couples have a lot of FAQ's around the wedding photography process and for a good reason-- it's widely all a new experience. That's why we contacted one of the tenured pros in the field to provide the answers you'll want to know...
We totally get it. Wedding photography can be a little nerve-wracking for first-timers. Not knowing what to expect can sometimes make brides and grooms a little nervous about posing in front of the camera. For others, it's common to wonder if a second shooter is worth hiring or if it's okay to ask for a full gallery before picking your photographer. That's why we asked a pro to answer some of your burning questions.
To all readers meeting Niki Baldwin for the first time, she's a Utah-based wedding photographer who takes pride in creating "fun & light hearted photography for the madly in love". She's a must-follow on Instagram for more tips and inspiring work. She's taken a moment to answer some great FAQ's from couples around the country...
Q: Should we do an Engagement Session?
"Engagement sessions are a perfect trial run for working with your photographer. Not only do you get to know each other but you get to see their workflow, become comfortable in front of the camera, and will see their edits/style on pictures of you. These sessions tend to be more laid back, fun, and the images are typically used for Save the Dates and Announcements. Plus, you have additional photos that you can decorate your reception and home with."
Q: How do I get my fiance excited about getting pictures taken?
"Let them know how excited you are and that these photos are important to you. Sit down and show pictures that your photographer has taken; point out the poses you love! Keep in mind that the camera will capture your attitude.
I recommend mentally preparing before each session: jam out to your favorite songs, go on a date, give yourself plenty of time to get ready and travel, etc. Whatever you choose to do, do what makes you feel in love and have fun during your session."
Q: What is a First Look/Formal Session?
"Formals (also known as Bridals) is a separate occasion from your wedding day when you get dressed in your wedding attire. These sessions can be done before or after your wedding and any combination of Bridals, First Look, Groom, and Couple.
The benefit of a Formal Session is that you get additional wedding pictures with breathtaking locations as your background. It relieves the stress of missing your must-have shots and helps you enjoy your day! It's also a great trial run for your hair and makeup before your wedding day."
Q: I Feel awkward in front of a camera, do you pose us?
"It's the photographer's job to pose, help you feel relaxed, and help you look best. It's normal for everyone to feel awkward in front of the camera; that's why hiring a photographer you vibe well with is important to help you feel comfortable and confident. Find out if your photographer is a traditional, lifestyle, artistic, or photojournalist. This not only describes their style but also how they pose and work with clients."
Q: Can we see a full gallery?
"Photographers tend to share their most favorite or perfect photos on their websites, blogs, and social media. Asking to view a full gallery will let you see how they handle different lighting situations. Ask if you can see a full gallery of the venue you're having your wedding at. If they have not shot there, don't toss them to the side; they may have not had the opportunity to shoot at your venue yet. Instead ask to see a gallery similar to your venue style and lighting."
Q: Is having a second shooter really worth it?
"Every wedding is different so it really depends on your needs. Consult with your photographer about your day, how everything is scheduled, and if two photographers would be needed. If everything is back to back, then yes; having two photographers can help divide and conquer to get you all your must have shots plus multiple angels during the ceremony.
If it's more laid back and not as many scheduled events going on, then one photographer is plenty."
Q: What is your approach to wedding day photography?
"This is an important question that should be asked more than it is. Every photographer is different in their approach to photographing a wedding compared to a regular session. Find out if your photographer on the wedding day is one that gets in there, poses everyone and is heavily involved.
Or if they have more of a photojournalist style where they hang back, taking pictures of the moment as if they are a fly on the wall. If it's a combination of these or completely different style."
We're thankful to Niki for taking a moment to help our Southwestern-bound couples feel better prepared for one of the most important days of their lives. Check out more of her work as she has countless tips around elopements and weddings to educate couples on their FAQ's leading up to the big day.
Whether you're headed to Zion, Moab, Joshua Tree, Sedona, Las Vegas, Grand Canyon or Big Sur, congratulations on your engagement and we wish you all the best from Zion Brides!