Wedding venues: how to get the best wedding photos

Wedding venues and photography

Your choice of wedding venue is going to have an enormous impact on the overall look and feel of your wedding photos.

The venue’s style, architecture and appearance will affect everything from the backdrop of group shots to the general tone of your wedding pictures and it’s important to keep this in mind when you’re choosing your wedding reception venue.

But, just as important is keeping an eye out for ways to use the venue’s most appealing features to enhance your wedding photographs.

photography at your wedding venue
Here are seven ways to do just that:

1) Select a wedding photographer that has worked at your venue before. Not only will they have an understand of the venue’s layout and set up, they will know where the light comes from at what time and where the best spots are for various photos.

They will also have a good idea of the type of equipment they need to bring along on the day. Be sure to ask your photographer to show you examples of photos they have taken at your venue of choice.

2) Talk to your photographer about the type of venue you have chosen, and the style of photographs you feel best complements that venue as well as the style of photo you’re after. A romantic country house may be the perfect setting for dreamy sepia shots but a chic inner-city hotel is a better option if you’re after glamorous Hollywood-style pictures.

3) Be on the lookout for potential photo locations and note them down every time you visit your wedding venue, then share those notes with your wedding photographer. The venue co-ordinator will be able to share with you the most common spots and ideas for photos at the venue, but don’t be afraid to be different. Perhaps they always have the group photos in the main entrance, but you would rather have them next to their giant fireplace

4) Look for a show-stopping spot either inside or outside the venue, somewhere you may be able to take a shot of all your guests Perhaps your venue features a sweeping staircase you could fill with guests for the ultimate group shot.

Or, maybe there’s a balcony or high window where your photographer could take a bird’s eye view of all your guests gathered below Another great option is to have all your guests gathered together on the balcony and have them throw confetti onto the newlyweds posing below.

photography at your wedding venue

5) If you’re counting on the stunning grounds of your wedding venue to provide an unbeatable backdrop to your wedding photos, be sure to have a back-up plan in the event of bad weather. If it does rain, don’t rule out outdoor photos altogether.

Pictures of the bride and groom in gumboots and the guests with umbrellas makes for some pretty amusing – and classic - additions to the wedding album but even the lure of splendid wedding photos may not convince you to head out into the vineyard at your winery wedding if it’s pouring outside, so always have a back-up… just in case.

6) If you a hiring a particularly attractive venue or the venue is integral to your overall wedding theme, ask the photographer to snap a few good shots of the setup before the wedding when there are no guests around.

They could also photograph special features such as picturesque arches, doorways or windows, as well as that amazing superhero-themed cake before you cut into it. It’s a handy tip that will allow you to feature before and after pictures of your reception room or as part of a sequence of shots of the decorating process itself, which will take your wedding album to the next level.

7) Many couples don’t realise that some wedding venues have photography restrictions, so be sure to ask before you book. You don’t want to spend an hour taking beautiful photos only to learn that the artworks or statues etc featured in the background of your wedding photos are subject to copyright. Yes, it can and does happen!

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