Although a fairly new tradition, the "First Look" photo relies on some old-fashioned traditions. Traditionally, the bride and groom did not see each other the day of the wedding and the groom did not see the bride's dress until she walked down the aisle. The "First Look" photo moves that moment of surprise when the bride and groom first see each other away from the wedding ceremony itself.
Today of course, many couples choose to wake up the morning of their wedding in their own house. Some couples may hang out together with friends and family before the wedding, and others walk down the aisle together. So, what is a "First Look" session really?
Well, it's a way of giving you more time at your wedding reception. If you and your partner are not concerned with waiting until the ceremony for the big reveal, you may wish to take photos together before the wedding.
The two big pros of this are that it frees up time after the wedding, allowing you to attend more of your cocktail party. If you and your partner have chosen not to see each other until you're both completely ready than the First Look can be a very romantic and touching moment. Moving it away from the ceremony may make it feel more personal.
Depending on the time and location of your wedding, taking photos before the ceremony may also give you more options in terms of natural lighting and locations. Of course, a First Look session will also capture you immediately after having your hair and make up done, before your dress has had a chance to get wrinkles, or hair has had a chance to wilt.
However, unless you are planning on having your entire extended family attend the First Look session, having a First Look session may not really save you that much time. You will wind up having personal photos before the wedding and family photos during the cocktail hour anyway.
You will also wind up with less time to get ready, which if you're having a daytime wedding could be a scheduling problem. If you'll feel rushed trying to make photos before the wedding, then a First Look session may not be for you. You should also discuss costs with your wedding photographer. Having the photographer do a portrait session before the wedding may require additional time from the photographer.
What do you think? Is a First Look session for you?