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A New England photographer with 10+ years of experience, Iโ€™m drawn to weddings because I want to see people having the time of their lives surrounded by all of the love possible, with photos that capture everything from the tiniest in-betweens to the most significant moments. 

I love eating my way across a new city, finding the best bites in town, and totally getting a thrill out of growing flowers.

Meet Teresa Johnson

Photography, Videography + Heirlooms Curated With Modern Vibrance

Should We Do a First Look?

February 2, 2018

Published on:

The first look is the subject of SO many great conversations with my clients! Couples have lots of questions about first looks, and I’d love to share some of those questions and answers here ๐Ÿ™‚

What IS a first look, anyway?

Grill 37 Wedding - 58

This couple was certain about a first look from the beginning! Spending time with their guests at cocktail hour was a priority for them.

A first look is exactly what it sounds like: an opportunity for you and your fiancรฉ to see one another just before the wedding. There are tons of options for doing them (see below), but first looks can be visual – you actually see each other – or done without seeing one another at all (just holding hands and talking)! They are incredibly special moments and very emotional, and have other impacts for your day as well (think timeline and photos).

Why would we want to do a first look?

Sturbridge Host Hotel Wedding

This couple opted for a first look and loved the opportunity to connect privately, before their guests arrived.

So many reasons! First, it’s a moment to pause in the midst of business, celebration and a little bit of craziness to just be still with one another. It’s an opportunity to connect with one another, privately, with or without your closest family and friends. Many of my clients have this amazing moment where it reinforces that the wedding really is about the two of them and the journey they’re about to take together – and that’s so powerful! First looks create amazing images, because couples are often more comfortable sharing strong emotions and reactions in private. Lots of advantages for photos: first looks allow you to do some photos when you’re fresh from getting ready; they cut down on the time for photos needed post-ceremony; and they allow you to get to your cocktail hour and begin mingling with guests right after your ceremony ๐Ÿ™‚

Are there reasons not to do a first look?

Springfield Marriott Wedding

This couple was married in an Armenian Church ceremony, and opted not to do a first look; they had a beautiful opportunity to see one another for the first time down the aisle!

Honestly, this should be 100% up to you as the client. Your priorities are as unique as you are, and you should do whatever makes YOU feel most comfortable. If you’ve been dreaming of seeing your significant other coming down the aisle (or at the front of it) since you were young, then that’s what you should do. If tradition is important to you, that’s wonderful – and everyone, your photographer included – should respect that. Because it’s YOUR wedding day ๐Ÿ™‚

The bottom line: doing a first look offers advantages in terms of an emotional connection, privacy, photography, and time with your guests – but also isn’t as traditional as seeing your loved one “down the aisle” for the first time. Either situation will provide beautiful images, so do what feels most comfortable for you; your wedding photos will always be better when you’re happy and confident with your choices!


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