I just got back from NYC and even though the weather wasn’t the best, I always have such a great time up there! I even got to see a flash mob in Central Park and a wedding party being photographed at the park in the rain. It got me thinking about these rainy days and how we deal with them on a wedding day. Over the course of photographing 100++ weddings over the last several years, it is rare that I’ve had to deal with rain on a wedding day. Statistically I know that I should have encountered more rain than I have, but as I prepared for this blog post, the rainy weddings were so easy to pick out because they were far and few between. I say this because I want to reassure you that the likelihood that you will encounter rain your wedding day is pretty slim, but as a bride and photographer, it’s better to be prepared than to show up the day of the wedding not knowing beforehand your game plan if it does happen to rain. Hopefully some of the information provided is helpful should you find yourself in this situation on your wedding day.
- The first tip is to mentally prepare yourself for the possibility that there could be rain. We all conjure up in our minds how our wedding day should be and like a movie, we play out the different parts of it in our mind and predetermine that beautiful sunset that surely will come. This is something that all of us do, whether it’s our wedding day, our dream job, the perfect kids we’re going to have etc. It’s part of life and we all do it. We all think about how some future event will play out. Instead of being fixed in your mind on a certain outcome, the best thing to do is to manage your expectations and hope for the very best, but acknowledge that the professional you have hired knows how to capture your wedding and deliver priceless images to you rain or shine. Rest easy and let them do their job.2. The second tip is to select a venue that gives you multiple photography options whether indoors or outdoors. Make sure your photographer is familiar with the venue and has had the opportunity to scout the area for the best locations for photos should the need to shoot indoors or under cover, arise. As a photographer, if you are shooting at a venue you haven’t photographed at before and you did not do a site visit prior to the wedding, plan to get to the photography location far enough in advance so that you can scout the locations and feel confident in your choices for the best photography spots.3. This one may seem pretty obvious but it should be said, bring umbrellas! Umbrellas are actually really cute props and I love them in photographs. As a photographer, umbrellas are a must in case you need to stand out in the rain, while the bride and groom are under cover so that you can get the shot you need. This has happened to me whenever there’s rain a wedding day. I always end up out in the rain and in order to protect the gear, plastic gear covering and an umbrella are often necessary. For this next shot, I was literally standing in pouring rain at a distance from the bridal party in order to shoot them under cover.4. Another great idea is to wear rain boots. There are two aspects of the rain boots that are convenient. First they can look really cute under a wedding dress 🙂 and secondly, if you don’t want to show the rain boots, in most wedding dresses you won’t even see them but your feet will be protected from any dampness on the ground.5. Be flexible with the timeline. With Chelsea and Andy’s wedding at Meadowlark, it was raining right when we were supposed to be doing formal photos before the ceremony. We made the most of the situation as you can see from the photos, but we still were hoping to get out in the beautiful gardens for some photos. The rain was really heavy and there was no practical way of photographing in the gardens before the ceremony. Fortunately, during the cocktail hour, the clouds broke and we were able to steal away for a few photos. If the weather is cooperating, be willing to trust your photographer and take the extra 10-15 minutes to get those shots that they know you will cherish. I promise you won’t regret it!6. Lastly, when you are choosing your wedding photographer, look for someone that not only shoots in natural light well, look for a photographer that has a good grasp of flash photography and how to use it to create stunning portraits even in the most dark environments. This is important because while you can’t control the weather, you don’t want the weather to dictate the quality of your wedding images. If it appears that your photographer only shows naturally lit images, then ask for examples of their flash photography work. Natural light photographers that don’t specialize in flash, sometimes struggle when a situation like this comes up. If you are a photographer and need more help with your flash photography, I personally have loved learning from Justin and Mary’s lighting course. I also recommend Zach and Jody Gray’s mastering off camera flash course.
Hopefully these tips were helpful to you, whether you are a bride or a wedding photographer. If you have further tips or tricks to add, please leave a comment. I’d love to hear your thoughts on this topic!
Happy Monday friends and seize the day!