One of the main higlights of a wedding would be the romantic photos that will accompany you throughout your marriage lifetime. It is also one of the rare moments where cheesy photos are completely acceptable!
Planning a wedding photoshoot might seem like a high calling, especially for the many of us who are not exposed to photoshoots. There are endless things to prepare, such as your outfit, hairstyle, lighting, weather, poses and more. You might wonder how who do the other couples put it all together?
Here in our photoshoot guide, are 10 steps that will get you there in a jiffy. Let’s calm those nerves and get ready for the most memorable photoshoot of your lifetime.
10 Steps to Planning Your Perfect Pre-Wedding Photoshoot
1. Come up with a photoshoot style or theme.
The easiest way to get started is to come up with a photoshoot style or theme. Have a chat with your partner and discuss the following.
Is there a story you’d like to tell through your photos?
You can recreate memorable events or milestones between the 2 of you, like how you got to meet each other, your first date, even the proposal!
Which style best describes your relationship?
You might want to portray that in your photos. Romantic, adventure, whimiscal, fairytale, sporty, or everyday life…
What type of engagement photos would you like to have?
Posed, candid, formal or casual?
Want something special and creative?
You can even model your shoot after a favourite movie! Popular movie themes include The Notebook and Up. Click here for more ideas.
Themed photoshoots are getting to be very popular among couples, but the trouble of setting up the staging and props might be a hassle. Check out The Lovure Bridal’s one stop service for themed photoshoots. They will provide everything for you – from outfits, photographers to makeup and props.
2. Outdoors, indoors or studio? Decide on the location(s) for your shoot.
Where are you going to shoot?
Is it going to be the beach, nature or a city landscape, or a restaurant where you had your first date?
Are you planning to have the shoot outdoors or indoors?
For outdoor shoots, weather would be a concern, so do consider the weather forecast, leave some buffer time to wait out weather changes, and also make sure to arrange for back up dates with your photographer. You might also want to know where the toilets are for quick touch ups and outfit changes. For indoor shoots, lightning would be a challenge, so be sure to have a chat with your photographer on this.
Depending on your style/theme, you will pick suitable locations. For ideas on where to shoot, here are the Top 10 Photoshoot locations in Singapore. You can find find the best locations in Singapore that will fit your photoshoot theme here. If your venue is not a public park/venue, reach out to them to ask for permission. Some venues might have charges, so be sure to clarify.
Overseas wedding shoots are now the hype. If you are considering going overseas for a photoshoot, be sure to plan and book early. Check out OneThreeOneFour, a website where you can discover and book wedding photographers from anywhere in the world. At their site you can check out photographers’ portfolios, rates and even chat with them to find out more.
3. Consider your budget for the shoot
The budget that you allocate to each section of your wedding depends on how important you value that segment. If you both value having beautiful photos, it is reasonable to place a larger portion of your wedding spending here. Depending on their experience and popularity, photographers can range from a couple hundred to thousands for a session. On average, a full day pre-wedding photoshoot will set you back about $600-800. For lower cost, reduce the number of hours for your shoot.
If you are on a tight budget, consider asking a favour from friends who are photographers to help you out. If you have some photography equipment on hand, consider having a DIY photoshoot! Check out How to Plan your DIY Pre-Wedding Photoshoot here.
4. Find your favourite photographer
Check out our Top 10 Wedding Photographers in Singapore here. As you do your research to find your photographer, look out for suitable photographers who are experienced in taking the theme/style that you are going for. Reach out to them to find out detailed costing and packages. I would advise meeting up with your photographer of choice before the day itself to see if you can “hit it off”. Being comfortable with your photographer will ensure that you remain relaxed and not spooked by the camera on the day itself. In addition, be sure to clarify what is included in the package as some freelance photographers only specialize in the shooting itself and will pass you only the digital versions.
5. Decide on your #OOTD
Are you going for a casual shoot or a full bridal shoot? What type of outfit are you wearing? What type of accessories (necklace, earrings, hair veil and shoes) to go along with?
Check out our Top 10 Bridal Boutiques in Singapore to get your gowns from. If you are looking to have yours specially designed, check out the Top 10 Bridal Gown Designers in Singapore. We recommend getting La Belle Couture’s gorgeous gowns for your wedding day – they have a huge range of over 1000 gowns and wonderful service. Read our review here.
Additionally, who will do your wedding hair and makeup? If you are having a formal shoot, I cannot stress how important it is to have professional hair and makeup done. It will complete your entire look, so do not plan to leave this out thinking you can settle it yourself. Check out our Top 10 Wedding & Makeup Stylists in Singapore. We recommend seeking out Ruth Chew Makeup for her quality products and gentle finishing touches.
6. Are you planning on having a videographer too?
If you are planning on doing a “behind the scenes” of your wedding photoshoot, you might want a videographer present. It is highly unlikely that the same person can do both.
However, if you are planning on filming a video separate from the photoshoot, I would suggest to either have it on a separate session or a different day. I tried having both simultaneously and it was extremely diffucult to coordinate take a photo and video requires different scenes and effort! Having it as a separate session on the same day can save you from doing your makeup and hair all over again.
If you plan on having a videoshoot, find a team with both photographers and videographers that can help you. Not only do you benefit from better package prices, but they would have great experience working together. We recommend checking out True to Love for their beautiful wedding photography and videography. Read our review here.
7. Props, props, props!
As much as a beautiful landscape works wonders, props can add a lot of life and vibrancy into photos. Check out our Top 10 Places for Wedding Decorations and Props.
Especially for themed shoots, I cannot emphasize on how much props plays a crucial role. A flower bouquet is a must, get yours from Elly Weddings. On staging set ups and backdrops, we’ve seen Styled Story work their wonders. For cakes and desert table set ups, check out the charming set up by Dessert Party.
8. Pick a day and timeslot for your shoot
When picking a day for your shoot, make sure that there is enough buffer time betwen your shoot and when you might need the photos. I would advise having your shoot at least 4-5 months before your wedding date.
If your photos are digital, be sure to allocate enough time for printing your photos or album. Add in more buffer for unlikely events like wet-weather or last minute cancellations that might cause the shoot to be postponed. Make your booking with the photographer ahead of time, and with the venue if it is not a public one. Have one or two backup dates prepared.
We advise picking weekdays for your shoot, so that there will be lesser public around. Early dawn and evenings also provide the best lighting for your photos.
9. Your list of must-have shots
This is not compulsory as experienced photographers will be able to guide you on the poses for your shoot. However, if you are particular about having some must-have shots like of your ring, be sure to jot down a list and share them with your photographer.
10. Recee your Photoshoot Location
This will save you a lot of time on the actual day. Head down to your shoot location for a recee, and note down which places you want to shoot ad. Also keep an eye out for which days and spots are less crowded. Ask your photographer for advice, as they would probably have shot in those popular locations before. If you are going to shoot in public areas, do also think of a contingency plan in case of any expected crop ups that might result in you not being able to shoot there.
Also, find out where the nearest toilets and shades are, so that it saves you the hassle of having to scout around on the actual day. Take note of sun is coming from at which time of the day, as lighting plays a big part in getting the best photos.
Be sure to Enjoy the Day!
Be sure to get a restful sleep the night before, and don’t sweat the small stuff! This experience is going to be once in a lifetime, so get close to your other half and soak up the entire experience. Get comfortable, be natural and enjoy! We hope that this guide helps you to plan your photo shoot. If it has helped you, please share it on Facebook with your friends!