Should we do a first look at our wedding?

First Look at wedding


One of the first questions clients ask me is, “should we do a first look at our wedding?”

I started photographing weddings in the early 2000s. (On film – goodness I’ve been doing this a long time)

Many things have changed since then.

Back in the day, first looks were uncommon and often disapproved of.

50/50 split

However nowadays his trend has become firmly established and approximately half of the couples I photograph choose to have a first look.

Research on current industry trends in the USA also supports this equal divide at weddings.

Perhaps this is why I am frequently asked, “Should we have a first look at our wedding?”

There is no right or wrong answer to this question!

A first look can be incredibly creative and personalized.

You can choose a private and intimate location.

Usually, one partner will approach the other, who will then turn around and see them.

Either one or both partners can be blindfolded.

You can even have the best man dressed in a dinosaur suit for a fun twist!

Personally, I love capturing moments during first looks before the ceremony.

However, I also appreciate and embrace the old school tradition.

I enjoy the raw and unscripted emotions that come with the couple seeing each other during the ceremony, surrounded by their loved ones who matter the most.


For my own wedding, my wife and I chose not to see each other until she walked down the aisle. (Yes, I cried like a baby haha)

As your photographer, I will never dictate what you should choose. It is your special day, and I am here to adapt to your wishes.

However, I am more than happy to provide some pros and cons based on my experience from over 1000 weddings.

Pros of a first look at your wedding

1. You have a chance to connect with each other before the day becomes hectic with other guests.
2. You save time after the ceremony, which is especially beneficial if time is limited or if you want to attend your cocktail hour.
3. Being alone together may help alleviate nervousness. Plus, if you shed some tears, it will be just between the two of you.
4. It is an opportune time to exchange gifts or read personal vows.

Cons of a first look at your wedding

1. You miss out on the emotion of seeing each other for the first time during the ceremony.
2. You may need to get ready a bit earlier.
3. Determining a suitable location for the first look can be challenging, especially if you are getting ready in different places and if you desire privacy from family and guests.
4. There is a possibility of your dress picking up some dirt before the ceremony (although this is inevitable throughout the day until you bustle).

A compromise worth considering is a first touch.

This involves holding hands around a door or corner, where you can read vows, exchange letters, or swap gifts.

Should we do a first look at our wedding?

If you were wondering, should we do a first look at our wedding. I hope this helped.

The next big question is planning your timeline.



Wedding - Portrait - Event Photographer