images and text by NC Photography
Choosing photo locations is like choosing your dress. Okay, well maybe not that extreme but it is a personal choice. The location you choose for your intimate photos will set the tone for your day, especially when you make your album and hang your prints. It will tie the whole day together and tell your story.
When choosing a location, try and make it personal. Include your interests, where you two may have met, the things you love, or other details that share a bit of who you are. For example, if you are ‘city’ people consider being surrounded by the city with a beautiful skyline or maybe somewhere downtown, surrounded by the tall buildings. Or, if you are more ‘country’ type of people, a beautiful canola field and some trees would suit your style and personality more. Flowers, buildings, walls, glass – there are so many “looks” you can go for with these photos, but when choosing the location make sure it means something to you and matches the feeling you are going for.
Should we shoot indoors or outdoors?
When considering whether to do your intimate photos indoors or outdoors, there are a few things you want to take into consideration. If you would like them to be indoors, light will play a huge factor on whether that is possible or not. If you hire a natural light photographer (someone who uses the natural light that is available 99% of the time) then shooting indoors can sometimes cause a problem. If the light is not available they may not be able to shoot in their usual style, this giving you photos that are not consistent with your expectations. I am not saying that natural light photographers can’t shoot indoors, because they definitely can if they are good at what they do, but they thrive in natural light conditions. This is where they are at their best and in their element. So, if you hire a natural light photographer make sure when looking at indoor locations you keep in mind that there would be a lot of windows and light available to them to make magic for you.
Another thing to consider with indoor locations is permission. A lot of places, especially in bigger cities, need payment or at least for the venue to be booked in order to use it. And considering the photographer population in edmonton, you better believe there will be others wanting to use that space as well! Indoor locations are hard to come by for wedding photos. Be sure to do your research and call around.
How much time should we schedule?
Scheduling the appropriate amount of time for your photos is extremely important. You spend all of this money on your photographer to spend the day with you and capture candid moments, but the formal intimate photos are just as important. Most photographers want at least 2 hours for photos and this is not including travel time or family portrait time. Family photos can take 20-45 minutes (depending on the family’s size) so make sure to take that into count when planning your timeline. When in doubt, please ask your photographer what he/she would prefer. Everyone is different, but most photographers thrive on this part of the day. They get to use their artistic outlet and make magic for you.
How many locations should we choose?
How many locations to choose is generally up to you. However, keep in mind a few things – sometimes breaking up the time and travelling to too many locations can cause a lull in excitement and make things drag a bit. Too many locations can also be a bit cumbersome with the travel and time it takes and make the day too busy. I recommend 1 or 2 locations, again, depending on your style preference. You want the day to flow so you also want the locations to flow as well. Two locations is plenty, but do ask your photographer their preference for this.
Popularity. In Edmonton some (or… a lot!) of brides request locations such as the legislative grounds. This is fine – it is a beautiful area – however, there will most likely be at least seven other weddings there fighting for the shaded side of the building! Okay, hopefully they’re not actually fighting, but everyone will be trying to use their time and light wisely. Keep in mind that you aren’t the only wedding that day, get creative and look for unique locations!
When in doubt – collaborate with your photographer! After all, they’ve done this many times before, and they’ll be able to help you choose the best location at the right time to get you the wedding photos you’ve always wanted.