Time Together – and Escaping for Sunset
So, a lot of you are probably looking at that title and wonder what I mean by escaping? “Why would we want to escape?” You’re probably also thinking “of course we’ll have time together, it’s our wedding!”
It’s therefore best I put it in a little context. An often underappreciated reality is that a wedding day is by its nature very busy, very stressful and very frantic.
Therefore it is all about finding balance between the needs of your families and friends, and you as a couple. And let’s face it, there’s going to be loads of people attending, some of which you haven’t seen in quite a while. Some you’ll know like the back of your hands, other you won’t have seen for a while. Some may live locally to you, others maybe live miles away or even abroad. But all will want to spend time with you and catch up: after all the reason they’ve come from wherever they have is to be with you and celebrate your love for your new husband or wife. Therefore it’s only fair you spend time with them too.
This is why I do a LOT of work behind the scenes. With you on the planning of your day, and also on the day with your venue staff, DJ and so on. I’ll also ask you to introduce me to them if we’ve not already visited the venue together and let them know that I’m their go to in case of any problems. I’m going to do everything in my power to minimise the time you’re not spending quality time with your friends and family. I’ll even end up helping pack away the dining tables if that’s what it takes!
This way the venue staff won’t need to bother you and take you away from socialising, I can cover most of it. I’m certainly not one of those photographers that monopolises the situation and the day, dragging you from pillar to post, and nailing you down to a fixed timetable.
There will be things we need to do together: and also with your family. I’ll be there making all the preparations so you don’t have to! After the ceremony, I feel it is very important to have a bit of time together rather than rushing on with events. Therefore, I’ll say to my couples to spend 20 minutes with their friends and family and have a drink together. This will help you relax a little after the emotions of the vows and the ceremony, and also get that chance to remind each other of how amazing you both look. After these moments then we look to do some group photos of all those invited to your day.
But, and it’s a bit but, you need to also make sure you spend plenty of quality time with your other half. This is YOUR day, with THEM. You’ve said those magic words which bonded you together. But it’s very easy to lose track of time as the wedding day proceeds, and even easier to get dragged from one family group to the next and not actually spend any quality time with your beloved.
A lot of the time, I’ll come over and tap you on the shoulder or similar and say, “I’m thinking it’s five minutes until cake cut, how’s that sound for you?” I’ll then do the same with your partner: there is no point whatsoever of only one of you being ready for the next part of the celebrations.
Remember everything is optional. If you suddenly feel “No, I just want to chill”, then exactly that will happen. I will still be doing stuff like this will be taking documentary photos and snapping you having fun with your guest. The bottom line is that it’s up to you: it is your day after all!
This is where “escaping” comes in. It’s been a mentally busy day, you’ve spent stacks of time with everybody but your other half and your thoughts and emotions. So I ALWAYS suggest we use sunset as a great time for the three of us to take a few minutes out of the day so you can have “you time.” Sunset is a fantastic time of a wedding day, simply because there’s colour in the skies, it’s gorgeous.
And also, it’s a really fantastic time for you as a couple, to relax and have time together, just the two of you. Up until this point, everything and I mean everything is group based. This is potentially the first chance that you will have just the two of you to think, reflect and enjoy all that you’ve achieved this day.
This is why we drift either off-site, or to a secluded location on-site, just for this short time.. It really doesn’t matter where: it can be just down to a local field, it can be over the road to the canal locks. It can be the other side of the venue where it’s tranquil and quiet. The location doesn’t matter hugely.
But what does matter is that it gives you the opportunity to relax together, you have a bit of time to think about what this day has meant, and what it will continue to mean in the years ahead. Now obviously, I’ll be with you for part of it. At some point, I will say “Right I’m off”, and I’m just going to go and wander off a little bit and give you some time to breathe.
I say this, I’ve always given people this option and no one has ever taken me up on it! Precisely why, I don’t know, but I’m willing to bet it goes back to my core philosophies of being your friend and being your trusted advisor. After over a year of working closely together towards your big day, seeing you make all the sacrifices you have to get here, I can only imagine having me around isn’t that bad an idea.
Ultimately, there is no pressure whatsoever. If you want me to disappear off, then you merely tell me. But ultimately that choice is yours. This window of time is yours alone, to have that reflection time to think about everything that they say has meant, and also to get some wonderful images as the sun hits the horizon, brings beautiful light, and actually symbolises all that this day was about. This moment is in fact a beautiful and symbolic reflection of this entire day.
So what does this mean to you as my client and friend? Well, ultimately, it’s up to you. You can do whatever you want to do, But I’m going to give you options and give you ideas. Then it’s up to you to decide what you want.
There’s the crux, I’m your friend, trusted advisor, assistant planner and your photographer who just wants you to be happy and have the most amazing day. Most importantly I want to make sure you have time with your other half. I’d like to think that sounds pretty good to you: if so I hope you’ll consider talking to me about your wedding day.
Time Together - today & forever
The bottom line is make time for each other together! Ask your photographer to help you do so, and don’t be afraid to ask your friends and family to do the same.
This is YOUR special day, and the rest of your lives together. Therefore I want you to make the most of it, and remember special moments together on this day. I DON’T want you to turn round after the big day and exclaim you never saw each other!!!
Remember – it’s your day and no-one will be offended by you spending time with your best friend.