Congratulations on your engagement!
Usually one of the first things to look at once you start to plan your wedding day is the venue. Everything else is likely to follow this once the perfect venue is booked, as it often determines your date and will set the style and tone of your day.
Some lucky couples will have their heart set on a particular venue, one they maybe have visited together previously, or holds a special sentiment to them, so in one way their decision has been made easier! On the other hand, there will be many couples that are just on the beginning of their exploration for finding their perfect venue. They will be wise to consider things such as: budget; how many guests can we invite; what kind of food can we offer our guests; Is there anywhere for them to stay; The list goes on… But I wonder how many of them will consider how the venue can affect their photographs and videos?
As wedding photographers, we have to be ready to capture moments during the day in any given situation. So that means working in all environments – tight spots, dark corners, rainy weather, bright areas, crowded rooms. Often some of the best photographs come from these unexpected places. But if you have your heart set on a certain style of photography, or you have a few must-have shots in mind it will pay to be mindful of these following tips so you’re not disappointed.
Here we share our top 3 tips to consider when choosing your wedding venue:
It’s important to see your venue set up for a wedding, as a room drastically changes by the time the tables and chairs are out and the dance floor is up, the flowers are arranged and the decorations are in place. Is there still room to photograph the ceremony in the way you’d like?
We can pray all we like for a dry and sunny day, but all the planning in the world can’t change Mother Nature’s plan! If it is pouring with rain is there room inside the venue for beautiful shots of you both? If family photographs are important to you is there a big enough or suitable inside space to carry them out? No one is saying photographs in the rain can't be fun, but you and your guests don’t want to spend 2 hours stood outside in the cold and wet.
If you spot a spectacular room or part of the venue check you can access it on your wedding day, and it’s not off limits.
Consider what outside space there is at your venue, if it’s in a city center do you mind passing traffic or pedestrians in your photographs? If your venue has luscious green fields, check they are not doing any works to the grounds at the time of your wedding or that you can access these.
Are there any local hidden gems that might be worth exploring – ruins, gardens, a local golf course, a river? If your venue isn’t blessed with stunning features there might be somewhere close by that is.
Most venues will have some rules around things like confetti or fireworks. If you’ve got your heart set on being showered in confetti, then make sure you will be allowed.
Will the Officiant allow photographs and filming to be carried out during the service? In all areas? Always worth checking to avoid any nasty surprises on the day!
This may sound obvious but the time of day and year will have a dramatic effect on how your venue looks, and what photographs you will be able to capture. If you’re booking a winter wedding don’t expect luscious blossom filled trees in the background which you may have seen in the summer when you visited. And keep your ceremony early, otherwise you’re narrowing down your time for photographs to be taken once the winter-sun is setting around 3 or 4pm.
You’ve fallen in love with the ceremony room, because the light is falling just so, through the window and creating beautiful shadows throughout the room. But is this when you will be getting married? As the lighting will change throughout the day and seasons. What is a beautifully warm lit room in summer may be a dark and cold room come the winter.