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13 Ways To Get Wedding Photos You Love

Hint: you might want to carry a selfie stick.

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2. Give a video camera to a younger family member.

Flickr: shoppingdiva

To get footage of your guests wishing you and your new spouse the best, send a young family member into the crowd with a video camera. Really, anyone can do the job, but a young teen is a good option — the footage will be steady since they’ll only be drinking Shirley Temples.


3. Pass a GoPro to the groomsmen, bridesmaids, and guests.

Julian Kanz

To get footage of grandpa busting a move on the dance floor and other unique moments you otherwise might not get to see, this tiny video camera is a great option. Buy one for the wedding and then take it with you on your honeymoon adventures, or rent one from a camera store if you don’t want to pay full price.

Tip: If you want to add some humor to your wedding memories, you can attach the GoPro to a bottle of liquor for extra fun footage.

4. Don't forget to the selfie stick.

Jessica Jones Photography

Carrying a selfie stick when you're making the rounds at your reception is a great way to make sure you don't miss out on capturing a special moment if your photographer isn't right next to you. It's especially handy in tight spaces since it allows you to take shots from above and fit a large group of people into one photo. If you don't want to carry it around with you all night, set out a bunch of selfie sticks throughout the reception venue; your guests will know what to do.

5. Create your own photo booth.

Aubrey Trinnaman / Via

If a professional photo booth just isn't in your budget, creating the photo booth setup yourself is a great option. You'll definitely want a remote (or a camera with a timer) and a tripod, but the camera depends on your budget and the quality of photos you want. If you have an iPad, then this app will make the setup super easy. To get higher quality photos, use a point and shoot or a fancy DSLR camera. If you don't have either, then check out a local camera rental shop (where the staff will be able to advise you on what you'll need).

For the backdrop you can use a blank wall, or you can get creative with some crafty projects. See this post for backdrop inspiration and check out this one if you want some ideas for props.

6. Make it easy for your guests to loosen up in the photo booth.

Flickr: naomi_pincher

It's easier for people to be comfortable in front of the camera when in a group. Try to set up your camera in a way that allows a large group of people to fit in the frame, or outfit the booth with a bench that can fit multiple people instead of using chairs.


7. Save all the Instagram photos with your wedding hashtag to Dropbox.

Meredith Mckee Photography

Create a free account on IFTTT to connect the two apps. It only takes a few minutes to set up, and you'll be glad you did. Instagram can be a bit challenging to navigate on a desktop, so having your photos automatically sent to Dropbox makes it super easy for you to order prints, get albums made, or print directly from your computer.

8. Use a professional photographer who specializes in weddings.

Universal Pictures

When asked about the biggest photography mistake couples make, Ryan Haack, a southern California wedding photographer, warns against hiring any Joe with a camera. "The mistake I hear the most is people getting a friend who has a nice camera to shoot their wedding," he tells BuzzFeed Life. "Usually it's to save money or because they see some good shots they took and think their friend is qualified to shoot the wedding. Most times they regret it later."

9. Go ahead and do the engagement photos.

Krista Guenin / Via Flickr: kristaphoto

While engagement photos can seem unnecessary, they are often included in a wedding photography package... and for good reason. This session helps couples get more comfortable with the photographer (and vice versa). The extra time together also means your photographer will get a better sense for your style (serious, playful, photojournalistic, etc). Not only will their job be easier on the big day, but it also increases the chance that you'll love how your photos turn out.


10. Make sure you don't overschedule the day.


Weddings are hectic events by nature, so it's easy to forget to slow down and enjoy every moment of the day. "Couples don't always get a chance to truly just enjoy the wedding and be present. I love a schedule that includes opportunities for emotional moments and connections, and also allows for downtime so the couple can steal away some private time with each other," Olivia Leigh, a photographer based in Chicago, tells BuzzFeed Life. "This way photos can be more candid and photojournalistic rather than the day being a scheduled 'photo moment'."

11. Keep the light and time of day in mind when planning your wedding portraits.

Sarah Kathleen Photography / Via

A pro photographer can capture beautiful photos in just about any setting, but what time of day you chose to hold your ceremony still has an effect. "Portraits are most beautiful when done closer to sunset instead of in the middle of the day — more light does not equal better pictures," Leigh says.

And don't forget to consider the season of your wedding — it may be worth looking at sunset times in advance, especially if you're planning a winter wedding.

12. Visit your venue at your planned ceremony time.

Flickr: naomi_pincher

Leigh also recommends that couples think about lighting early on in the planning process. "Couples can visit their ceremony site before the wedding and stand where they will stand at ceremony time to see exactly what the light will be like," she says. "If you're in super bright sun and your partner is in shade, make a little adjustment so you are both evenly shaded. This is ideal so you can have better photos — and so you aren’t squinting during the ceremony!"

Selecting a wedding time based on the lighting may not be your first instinct, but it's something to consider, especially if your ceremony will be indoors. Good lighting not only means great photos, but it also means your photographer may be able to avoid using a flash.

13. When talking to your photographer, speak up about your family's dynamic.

Summit Entertainment

"Many couples come from divorced or blended families and it is so, so helpful to learn more about these relationships so we can interact smoothly with parents and siblings and also make them feel comfortable in photographs." Leigh says. "Weddings are such intimate events ... and learning more about any back stories or dynamics can really make things run so much more smoothly."