Photos from your wedding day will create lasting memories and it is worth considering how your venue may affect the look and feel of your photos before making a final decision on where to book in for your dream day.
When looking for venues, whether it’s for your ceremony or reception or both, try to picture how the venue’s features will create stunning backdrops to the photos you want to capture. Whether they’re man-made, like fountains or brick walls or graffiti, or whether they’re natural, like trees and bushes or long vistas – this is what is going to be in every photo that you have of your day. So you want to make sure that its an environment that you want to be seen in for years to come.
Here are a few things to consider before making the final decision on your venue.
Try and find a photographer that has worked at the venue before and has a style that will complement the look you are after.
If you are having a more natural wedding in a garden, choose a relaxed photographer who takes more candid shots. Formal gardens look stunning in more posed and formal photos. If they have worked at the venue before they will be aware the best spots to take various shots as well as where and how the light falls at different times of the day. They may be able to advise you on the timing of events to ensure the lighting is right to capture the best shots.
If the photographer hasn’t worked at your venue before then try and set up a pre-visit, preferably around the same time of day as your ceremony, so they are fully aware of what the light will be like and what the venue has to offer as far as architectural feature or areas that will create beautiful settings for your most important photos.
Talk to you photographer about the type of photos you want them to achieve and why you have selected the venue.
When visiting the venue try and visualise yourselves in various location and have at least four or five locations across the venue that you prefer and let the photographer know these.
It is a good idea to simply take some photos on your phone and see how they come out – often something you think will make a great backdrop can disappointing, and something your think will not be very good can be stunning. But you won’t know until you try – and your wedding day is not the day to be working that out.
Try and find spots that are unique and different from other wedding photos you have seen.
Look for that money shot. The one that is going to have everyone going WOW when you are showing them your photos. This could involve a stunning autumn colour back drop, masses of spring blossom, a background of shimmering water that captures the two of you perfectly or styling details you add to existing features, like lanterns through an arbour or strung in a tree. Your photographer will be able to help you with this as well.
If you are keen to have a group shot of your guests, again look for an area that will first hold everyone, has some unique or interesting feature or has a fabulous backdrop that is perfect for a group shot.
If you have your heart set on an outdoor photoshoot then be prepared for all weather conditions – blazing sun can be difficult to capture perfect photos in, whereas a cloudy overcast day can be just perfect light and umbrellas can add a touch of whimsy to your wedding day photos. The trick here is to be prepared for all weather extremes.
If the set up for your wedding ceremony is super stunning, ask the photographer to try and get some shots before the whole scene is crowded with guests. This can be tricky with timing and wanting the photographer in 3 different places at once, but it is worth it if you can make it happen.
In the end, these photos will be how you look back on your special day, so you want to make sure you get a photographer who is professional and experienced, who you can trust to deliver the best product.
Here at The Secret Garden, we have a variety of locations for wedding ceremonies and photography sessions.
There are areas of the garden that change constantly during the year or spots, such as the fountain garden, that give a constant look all year and have a structured feel about them.
We have included throughout this post some of our favourite wedding photography shots from the last couple of years to give you an idea of what the garden can offer across the year as a wedding photography location. If you have any particular questions or want to see more images of a particular wedding, please get in touch – we would love to share The Secret Garden with you.