How Hard Can It Be To Take Our Own Wedding Pictures?

Couple Under Garden Arch Surrounded With Flowers

With all the beautiful professional pictures we see on Instagram, it may come as a shock when we find out that some of those amazing pictures were done by amateurs of the trade. But how easy is it really to take a professional picture? However, could you learn fast that you might be able to take your own wedding pictures?

Your wedding is fast approaching and as the anxiety grows in everyone associated with the big day, two big concerns weigh on everybody’s mind. Those are…

(1) How can we reduce the stress of this big day?
(2) How can we cut the costs?

These two questions are in conflict with each other too because in order to reduce stress, you have to increase the work that someone has to do. Sometime during the preparation time frame, the idea will come up, why don’t we let “John Jones” do our wedding pictures? John Jones may be someone’s brother who is “really good at photography” or just a friend of the family. The appeal is that they will save you a pile of money and probably do just as good a job as the expensive photographers.

While you certainly want to watch out before you turn over this important job, maybe you or someone in the wedding party can take the photos as well as a professional. After all, how many wedding nightmares have you heard about a professional photographer who either damaged the romantic nature of the ceremony by butting in too often, aggravated the guests by blotting out their view of the wedding to get an action shot or charged an arm and a leg only to deliver poor quality photos.

In truth, it is entirely possible for an “amateur” photographer to do a terrific job taking pictures at the wedding. But there are some guidelines you should follow if that job has fallen to you. If you are reading this as the bride, groom or anxious mother and you are considering using a friend for these photos, spend an hour going over these guidelines and not only will you get better pictures, your anxiety level will go down too.

Beach Wedding Ceremony during Daytime

1. Know your equipment inside and out.

Whether you are using a run of the mill digital camera or an expensive set up that has taken you years to work up, make sure everything is in top-notch working order and that you are thoroughly familiar with every nuance of the machine. Remember Murphy’s Law. If anything can go wrong, it will. So keep Murphy out of the wedding by checking and double checking your camera and related equipment.

Woman Wearing Pink and White Low Top Shoes Dancing Beside Man

2. Have spares of everything possible.

If there are batteries involved with the operation of the camera, have several spare sets on hand and know where they are. If the batteries go out as the bride and party are posed at the alter, you don’t want an hour delay why you run to the 7-11 to get more. The same goes for flash bulbs and even the camera itself. Have spares of everything possible so Murphy just goes to the next wedding down the road to make his mess.

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3. The photo is about more than the bride and groom.

If you are used to “staging” your pictures, you may not worry that often with activity in the room. After all, if everybody is posing, the environment is controlled. This will not be the case during an action shot like during the wedding or reception. So keep a keen awareness of the room, the activity around the subjects, the lighting and background props. You don’t want to produce the perfect shot of bride and groom kissing only to have Cousin Ned gagging on the cake in the background.

Woman Preparing Christmas Table

4. Be aware of glare from windows, lights and eyeglasses. These can sneak up on you.

As a rule, someone who is part of the event can get great shots because they know the people and can be mixing as those wonderful “little moments” occur. So it’s worth a try if you feel good about the skills of your photographer and they follow these little guidelines.

Two Woman Taking Photo in Photobooth Holding Black and Pink Masquerade Mask


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Rachael Aprill Phillips is a freelance writer and the founder of Rachael Academy. You can find out more about her work on

Fun Wedding Photo Ideas

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Pictures are an integral part of any wedding. Newlyweds are usually thrilled to get their pictures back from the photographer so they can relive their special day. But there are many special activities you can build into a wedding that involve photos.

One fun idea that many brides employ is to take photos of everyone as they arrive at the wedding, almost like you do at a high school prom or company Christmas party. You can provide a backdrop and couples can pose either for a paid photographer or for whoever happens to pick up the camera. These pictures can be taken with a Polaroid camera for instant fun or with a disposable camera. If you want slightly higher quality photos, go for a digital camera.

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This can be an excellent way to keep guests busy and happy until the “official” reception begins with the arrival of the bride and groom.

As an extension of that idea, you can take instant photos and create scrapbook pages or memory book pages with the photos. There can be supplies on hand so guests can create pages on site, or pages can be pre-made and photos simply placed into the prepared spaces. If guests don’t want to create pages on site, or the bride doesn’t want this particular activity going on, the photos can be saved for later. As a gift for the bride and groom, someone can create memory books with these photos.

If Polaroid cameras are used, another option is to have the people in the photo sign the Polaroid photo and place that in a basket somewhere. The bride and groom will enjoy looking at the photos later.

While it’s not a particularly unique idea, many brides like to provide disposable cameras on each table at the reception so guests can capture candid shots of the reception and the table guests. These photos can be added to the newlyweds’ wedding album or they can be placed into a separate album showing the wedding from the guests’ perspective.

Another fun activity sure to be entertaining is to create a “silent photo guess” area. Here’s how this works: before the wedding, someone close to the bride and groom collects pictures of the bride and groom at various stages in life. The photos should depict the bride and groom doing things, not at Christmas or with their first birthday cake. In other words, the photos should include some action, but it shouldn’t be obvious in the picture what has taken place or where the person is.

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Much like a silent auction, people will come along and look at the photos, then take a silent guess as to what the photos show. They can write their guess on a piece of paper and put it in a numbered basket that corresponds with the number on the photo. Reading these guesses during the reception is entertaining and sure to be amusing. The bride or groom can provide the real answers. This is a particularly fun activity at a relatively small, family wedding where the participants know the bride and groom very well.

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If you want to provide an area for guests to have their photos taken but aren’t thrilled with the “prom night” idea, how about having a photo corner set up somewhere in the reception hall or facility. Here, the wedding photographer will take candid shots of wedding guests. They might be couples, but could also be entire families, friends having a good time, or the groom being carried on the shoulders of the best man. Whatever the pictures end up being, they provide a fun, “let it all hang out” area for the wedding guests and a surprise for the bride and groom. Since they will likely be busy with all the reception details and having the time of THEIR lives, they might appreciate knowing their guests had a pretty good time too, as evidenced in the photos.

Wedding Club

The Wedding Club

Wedding Club

The Wedding Club renowned for hosting glitzy bridal shows did it again this week!  The Autumn collection featuring a string of international bridal designers were showcased with a sophisticated presentation in partnership with Brides Magazine at the Berkeley Ballroon, London.

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Zuhair Murad

Guests and brides-to-be were treated to selection of delicious treats from the Berkeley Hotel and an afternoon flowing with Grey Goose Le Fizz cocktails, while the tables were decorated with floral designs by In Water Flowers.  If that wasn’t enough Matthew Curtis (hairstylist-to-the-stars) and his team were on standby to recreate bridal hair for your big day!

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Zuhair Murad
Wedding Club
Carolina Herrera


Established in 2001 and now with 3 stores in Knightsbridge, South Kensington and Birmingham, The Wedding Club is an imperative visit for any bride who is fashion conscious and desires luxurious designs for the most special day in her life.  The Wedding Club are exclusive UK stockists of bridal collections which include international designers Zuhair Murad, Berta, Savannah Miller, Costarellos and Carolina Herrera who were all featured at the Autumn catwalk show.

Recognised for travelling the world to source top design brands for brides, each store provides a curated edit to suit all brides and budgets and set in elegant surroundings that makes every bride feel at ease to explore the exquisite bridal range.

Wedding club
Savannah Miller
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Bride Icon has put together some of our favourite wedding dresses from each of the designer collections.  We are sure there is a dress in there that is perfect for you!

For more details on the trunk shows coming up see details below.  Every dress purchased at one of The Wedding Club stores includes a donation to help aid relief and to rehabilitate communities by the Help Refugees charity.

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Kathryn Russell

Kathryn Russell Bridal Couture

So who is Kathryn Russell?  You won’t find her with an extravagant online website, but if you are truly looking for a distinctive expression in prominent bridal designs, then stay tuned – you are about to hear from Kathryn herself.  Based in Gosforth, Newcastle this artistic wedding dress designer practices what she preaches just by word of mouth!

Kathryn Russell / Model AtifKathryn’s inspiration in bridal designs is recognised purely from her love for vintage chic and a deep rooted fascination of romance.  Enthused by movies from the yester years, and taking influences from Hollywood screen icons, her dresses are created to catapult every bride through an era of timeless and elegant beauty.

Bride Icon has been given an exclusive first look at a theatrical bridal shoot that portrays Kathryn’s love of vintage and flowers, particularly roses.  The sequin details sparkling like stardust and the amalgamation of the roses takes us on a journey back to the days when fashion was dictated by the goddesses of the screen such as Audrey Hepburn.

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Kathryn’s added adulation for accessories and hats meant an intricate floral rose theme was a must to convey a further magical element.  The tulle overskirt represents the romance of the ceremony with the straight gown celebrating the comfort of the evening ahead – complimenting this dress with the final touches to perfection.

The remarkable photo shoot depicts what Kathryn is best known for.  The finer details, the little touches of style and elegance, but with the overall conviction of love and romance that is almost obligatory for every bride.

Kathryn Russell

The Hattie Gown modelled here by the stunning Sanya Malik comes with all the fundamentals that oozes grace and sophistication. Sanya Malik was chosen as the model for this enchanting photo-shoot along with Atif Hussain – an upcoming male model.  Sanya began part-time modelling in 2013, and ventured into the world of fashion through London – one of the biggest fashion gateways.  She began to build her portfolio with various photo shoots, gaining experience and learning more on makeup, fashion, and networking skills.   It’s quite easy to see her enthusiasm in this industry, by her creative thinking and showing her versatility and potential as the next top model.  If you would like to see more on Sanya’s fashion profile visit her website here:

Kathryn Russell / Sanya and Atif

For further details on the latest collections or to contact Kathryn her number is 0191 – 2846528 or 07760 220590. Kathryn’s studio is based at 52 Salters Road in Gosforth, Newcastle-Upon-Tyne.


Photographer: Pavla Lachmanova
MUA; Emma Collins
Hairstylist; Tamara Tott
Male model; Atif Hussain
Female model; Sanya Malik


@atifmod1 – Atif Hussain  [male model]
@sanyamodel1 – Sanya Malik [female model]
@weddingdaymua – Tamara Tott
@embermaind_mua – Emma Collins