Should you do a first look at your wedding?

Getting married is such an important event in your life. Actually scratch that. It’s THE MOST important event in your life. As you plan all of the details for your perfect day, have you considered that doing a first look (or not doing a first look) will completely shape the timeline and flow of your entire day?

What Is a First Look?

Simply put, a first look is when a couple sees each other in a private, intimate moment sometime before the ceremony on their wedding day.

Why do a First Look?

There is no right or wrong answer when couples are trying to decide if they should do a first look; the decision should be made according to the timeline and how they envisioned this special moment of their day. But if you’re not sure what to do, keep scrolling for six reasons why a first look might be perfect for you.

1. Intimate and Special

Doing a first look offers a beautiful, quiet moment for the two of you to see each other without hundreds of eyes watching. There is no rush in this moment and you can take as much time as you want as your photographers and videographers step back to give you privacy. For couples who don’t love the spotlight and attention, this reason alone is worth doing a first look. And as a huge bonus, these few moments typically make for beautiful and emotional photos and video.

2. Nerves

Brides and grooms are typically very nervous up until that moment when they see each other for the first time walking down the aisle. If you have a later ceremony in the day, that means your nerves are building for hours and hours and some people aren’t able to enjoy their day fully until those nerves are gone. If you do a first look earlier in the day (after getting ready), then your nerves are gone and you can both enjoy the full wedding day together.

3. Spend the Day Together

One of the most common things you hear after a wedding is how fast the day went by. Imagine if you could spend the ENTIRE day with your spouse-to-be, rather than just after the ceremony on? Doing a first look allows you to spend the full day together (besides getting ready).

4. All Photos Are Done Ahead of Time

If you choose to do a first look, then that means you are able to get all of your wedding party, family photos, and bride and groom photos done BEFORE the ceremony, so that after the ceremony, you can move right into your cocktail hour or dinner!

5. Allows You to Customize Your Cherished Moment

Another aspect to consider when choosing a first look is that you have the ability to customize the moment exactly the way you want it. You can choose to have only the two of you present for the first look. Or you can choose to have immediate family members. Or maybe you want ALL of your loved ones and you invite close family and the entire wedding party. It’s completely up to you. You also have the ability to choose the time and location. This allows for the capability of getting more close-up and intimate portraits compared to traditionally walking down the aisle.

6. Think about your guests

As we mentioned before, doing a first look well before the ceremony allows you to get all of the wedding photos of your dreams done before the ceremony. This allows you (if you want) to have a later ceremony time so you AND your guests can go straight from the ceremony to the cocktail hour. Otherwise, if you have an early ceremony time, your guests will be waiting a few hours while you get photos done before cocktail hour begins. This definitely isn’t a bad thing and it is common at weddings to have a few hour gap between the ceremony and cocktail hour, but the idea of guests waiting around makes some couples uncomfortable.

First look…yay or nay?

Ultimately, the choice is up to you! There is no right or wrong way on how a couple sees each other for the first time. The first look just allows for easy and efficient timeline planning as well as the option to have that special, private moment. Choose the option that works best for you as a couple!

Communicating with your photographer about your wants and needs is all part of the process! If you are interested in learning more about first looks, weddings, or engagement sessions, don’t hesitate to reach out to us at or! Happy planning!