What Are Bridal Photos

Picture this: You're walking down the aisle to marry your best friend. The sun is shining and you can't stop smiling. You see all of your friends and family on their feet, waiting for you to join them in wedded bliss. All eyes are on you as the processional music starts playing...and then it's time for photographs! What do you want those pictures to say about who you are? Who will be looking at these photos years from now when celebrating your first anniversary or remembering that momentous day? This blog post talks about what bridal portraits are, why they're important, and how we take them here at Kiki Photography. Let's get started!


A bride posing for bridal photos

What is a bridal portrait session?

Bridal portraits are a staple of wedding photography. They're an opportunity to capture unique, intimate moments with your new spouse as you transition from the wedding into married life. What do bridal portraits look like? As a photographer, I've seen them in many different forms:


These images feature the bride and groom by themselves; they can also just feature the bride alone in her wedding dress. Most often people take bridal photos when it's most convenient for the bride (so either during engagements if the bride is wearing her wedding dress or at the actual wedding).


Why do people take bridal portraits?

Weddings are incredibly special days! All too often, the day is filled with festivities and visiting families. It can be difficult to appreciate the day and sometimes that filters into the photos that are taken.


Bridal portraits are designed to get those lovely candid moments, allow you to enjoy the day, without the stress.


A bride holding flowers in front of many paneled windows while posing for bridal photos

I like to think about bridal portrait sessions as an opportunity to say a few words through your images in addition to your vows on that special day! The difference between simple wedding photos and bridal portraits is a chance for you to speak through your images. It's also an opportunity for us here at Kiki Photography to tell your love story with our own unique additions. I try hard not only to keep things positive but also light-hearted which is something that will be apparent if you view my blog post here. There really is no such thing as too many smiles when it comes down to it!


For Bridal photos, we can shoot them on the day of your wedding or weeks in advance. The nice thing about doing it this way is it gives you photos to use on Social Media, wedding invites, and other material you send out to people. It's also nice to get your photos taken on a day that is relatively stress-free compared to the busy big day.


How to prepare for your photoshoot

The most important preparation to make before your photo shoot is to communicate everything you want with your photographer. I want to know what you are looking for in your photos, who else is going to be at the shoot if anyone, and any other specific requests that you have of me.


Having this communication allows you and your photographer to find a spot for the shoot, decide on the types of looks you want, understand the logistics of wardrobe changes, time constraints, and more. This helps photographers make the most out of your time with them!


Here at Kiki Photography, we put special emphasis on the pre-shoot consultation. That's where we can meet you and make sure you are comfortable and happy with your choice. We also love celebrating your special day too!


After that, the most important advice I can give any bride is this... HAVE FUN! These are some of the first photos you will have as a married couple together, so make them count. Go out there, fully embrace those goofy moments and lean in the cutesy nature of the photos.


A bride holding a bouquet with her back turned on a snowy landscape while posing for bridal photos

The best time of day to have your photos taken

Is in the afternoon, preferably around 3 pm or 4 pm (depending on the time of year). This gives enough time to capture some nice sunset photos during the shoot. It highly depends on the look you want though. I recommend sunset or sunrise to get those perfect moments.


Tips on how to find a photographer

Before you find a photographer, set a budget so that you don't accidentally go over budget without even setting one. After that start figuring out what photography styles you want for your bridals.


Do you want a traditional, classic look or something more fun and playful?


Once you have an idea of what your style is, do your research online (portraits on Google images are a good place to start) as well as ask friends for referrals. This can take some time so be prepared. Make sure to ask around and find lots of options. The more options you have the better.


A bride brushing her hair back with her hand while holding a bouquet and posing for bridal photos

Examples of packages that may be offered by your photographer:

- Engagement photoshoot: Typically this will include some form of an engagement session with your photographer. This is a great way to get comfortable working with your photographer as well as getting used to how they work. The sessions can be in the studio or out in the field (ie; Park, Beach). This should include the bridals or at least some sort of discount for them.


-Wedding day Photos: Typically a photographer will be working all day so this is usually the main event. This can range from 8 hours to 16 hours, depending on your needs and budget. You can usually get your bridals done here as well, though it will depend on your photographer.


-Bridal Photos: Bridal photos are typically done on a day separate from the wedding. This will depend on how large your bridal party is. Typically it's the bride only, but some studios have more experience with larger parties or even 2 groups at once for bridesmaids and mothers/grandmothers, etc... This is only if you aren't combining your bridals with your engagements or Wedding day photos.


A smiling bride holding a bouquet with a background of snow while posing for bridal photos

How long will the shoot take?

A typical bridal photo session lasts about an hour. We do this to keep you smiling but we can do longer sessions too. The most important thing is to make sure you get photos you'll be happy with for years and years.


It’s important to remember that a bridal portrait session is meant to capture the memories of your wedding day and not necessarily be an artistic expression. This can help you find a photographer who will produce images in line with what you envision for your big day.


Brides often have many questions about their shoot, which we hope this article has helped answer! If you still need more guidance or want personalized advice on how best to prepare for your photoshoot, contact us today! We are happy to chat over the phone or set up a time where can speak with you and answer any questions.

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