The Significance of the First Look | Northern VA Wedding Photographer

Many of my couples ask me whether or not they should have a first look. If you’re reading this, you’re probably wondering the same thing. In my professional opinion, I think they are an excellent idea. I love first looks! I know that they are a tad bit ‘untraditional,’ but let me take a minute to explain the benefits of a first look.

1. Your wedding day will be crazy busy. No getting around it. You have so much to do and so little time to do it in. If you have a first look, it helps to calm down the day a bit. Instead of trying to rush around to get everyone together and have pictures taken between the wedding ceremony and reception while your guests are waiting, you’ll have that time to relax and enjoy your guests and not have to worry about being late to your reception. We can do all of the main portraits before the ceremony even begins – at the very least, the bride and groom and even bridal party photos. This way, your hair and makeup are still perfect, as they were just finished. If your family is coming earlier, we can do their photos beforehand, as well, or we will only have to worry about those portraits after the ceremony and not the bridal party shots.

2. A first look also gives you a very special, intimate moment with your new spouse. If you are nervous or stressed out, this will especially help to relax you, and your spouse can comfort you and let you know it will all be OK. During the ceremony, there are many of people around and you can’t fully take in the moment because everyone is staring at you. With a first look, that moment is just between you and your spouse (and your photographers, of course).

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3. Even if you have a first look, your husband will be just as happy to see you walking down the aisle and you’ll still take his breath away. Don’t worry that you’ll be spoiling the moment by seeing him prior to the ceremony. I have noticed the grooms and brides have more of a reaction one on one then at the ceremony. They make some of the best shots!


It’s hard to tell but he’s teary eyed!!

4. If you don’t want to do a first look with your spouse, I always recommend doing it with the father or mother if they haven’t seen you (or the bride) yet. Their reaction is priceless as well seeing their beautiful daughter as a bride about to marry the love of her life! I love to capture moments like this!!

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