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5 Reasons for a Pre-Wedding Photoshoot


5 Reasons to Say “I Do” to a Pre-Wedding Photoshoot

When you’re planning a wedding, you’re often overrun with options. From bridal showers and engagement photos to welcome dinners and farewell brunches—there are countless activities and commitments to consider tacking onto your wedding festivities. While every couple—and every love story—is entirely distinct, there is one option that I always recommend: a pre-wedding photoshoot. Wondering why? Let’s get right to it!

What is a pre-wedding photoshoot?

That’s a great question! As the name suggests, a pre-wedding photoshoot is a photo session that takes place before your wedding. Some might consider an engagement shoot a pre-wedding session, but I actually think they’re two distinct things. For me, the ideal pre-wedding photoshoot is one that happens the day before—or a few days before—your wedding in the location of your wedding, but at a venue that’s distinct from your day-of venue. Why is it worth the investment? A few reasons…

1. It alleviates some of the day-of pressure.

Your wedding day goes by in a flash—and capturing photos is a huge portion of what can take up precious time you’d rather be spending celebrating with guests. While you certainly want to capture a plethora of images from your wedding day, having a day-before session or pre-wedding shoot allows you the comfort of knowing you’ve already captured some incredible images of the two of you—which lightens the pressure that you have to get every last perfect shot on the day-of.

2. It gives you a little “practice” in front of the camera.

No-one really tells you this—but the truth is the one person you spend the most time with on your wedding day aside from your new spouse is your photographer. (Did I just blow your mind?) It’s extremely important, then, that you feel at-ease with your photographer and that you’re familiar with his or her communication style. A pre-wedding shoot allows you a little “practice” if you will. It gives you an opportunity to get comfortable with your photographer before the big day, understand her cues, and get an idea of how she’ll ask you to move in front of the camera. It also allows you to shake those in-front-of-the-lens jitters before your wedding day (which is important if you tend to be pretty camera-shy).

3. You can indulge yourself with a second wedding outfit. (Yes, please!)

While some couples may opt to wear their wedding digs for their pre-wedding photoshoot, there’s always the option of wearing something more casual (and not spoiling the surprise for the “first look” or the moment you walk down the aisle on the day-of). That easy-breezy white dress or casual-cool linen suit that you’ve had your eye on? While they may have felt too informal for your actual wedding, they’re the perfect option for your pre-wedding photoshoot. 

4. You get some much-needed time alone.

Even with the most seasoned planner on your side, you still might feel like you’re being pulled in a million different directions on your wedding weekend—especially if you have a ton of friends and family around you. There’s no better excuse for whisking away and taking a break from the madness than a pre-wedding photoshoot. It’s a great opportunity to excuse yourself from the presence of friends and family and sneak away somewhere private with your partner.

5.It allows you an opportunity to explore your wedding locale.

If you’re tying the knot in a dreamy destination, a pre-wedding photoshoot can be the perfect excuse to explore the city or check out a landmark you haven’t had a chance to see. Your photographer can help you come up with ideas, but I recommend selecting a shoot location that’s vibrant, storied, and/or iconic (think: at the foot of the Eiffel Tower in Paris). I also like the idea of choosing somewhere that’s distinct from your wedding venue. After all, you’ll have photos from your wedding day—so think about using your pre-wedding photoshoot as an opportunity to curate an album that’s of an entirely different aesthetic and in an entirely different setting.

One of my favorite pre-wedding photoshoots? Kailee and Tim’s Paris session. Dive into these dreamy images with me, s’il vous plaît.

Until next time, happy planning!

Photography Credits:
Stepan Vrzala |

Contact Exalt Africa for more details or to discuss your upcoming wedding.

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