The Wedding Recessional
The Wedding Recessional
If you’re an avid reader here, then welcome back to our blog here at Weddit, or equally, if you’re new here, welcome to our space where we talk about all things wedding photography! From the title you’ve probably already guessed what today’s article is going to be about and that is the part of the service known as the wedding recessional. The wedding recessional is actually one of the most significant parts of the wedding day as a whole, as it marks the first movements of the happy couple as newlyweds. This is where you come in...
You’re the photographer, do the math! It’s your job not to screw it up and that’s us putting it politely. The thing is, we hate to come down hard on you guys, but this is someone’s wedding day we’re talking about. It’s one of those moments that’s so important, you have to get the shot and not mess it up! You have to be ready, prepared and confident that you’ve got the best angle for the capture. This part of the wedding ceremony is one of the most significant of all and it may actually help you out if you have a wedding assistant to cover another angle. They’ll have your back and once the day is over, you’ll have multiple angles and types of shots to look over before they go into print. So, in today’s blog post, we’re going to be talking about the wedding recessional and how you can capture the best photographs for this part of the service. Just carry on reading to learn how to do it...
What Is A Wedding Recessional? - You’d be surprised how many people there are (let alone wedding photographers) who don’t know what part of the ceremony the wedding recessional is. To be fair that isn’t a big deal because most people just refer to it as the part of the ceremony where the happy couple are newlyweds or when the couple leave their wedding venue. But the real question is, how can you make the most out of this moment within your images.
The Best Way To Shoot A Wedding Recessional – Let's put it this way, the more cameras there are covering the area, the more likely you are going to capture outstanding photographs collectively with your team. Wedding photography teams vary in size, but they generally range from an individual photographer to three shooters (with the lead’s assistant standing in as the third shooter). The more shooters you have on your team, the more coordinated the movement must be to ensure that the angles are covered for each of the important moments, and that the bride and groom’s (as well as the guests’) experience isn’t hampered by intrusive coverage.
Collectively, you should capture; full length shots of the Bride & Groom, head shots of the happy couple (especially the Bride). These shots should be focused on the detail of the couple’s attire and happiness of course! They will make for beautiful images to put into print later on for your client. If you can, you could try to capture side-on shots of the couple leaving the wedding venue (try to capture the Bride and her veil if she is wearing one) and also have one of your shooters stand where the couple took their vows. That way, as they turn their backs and leave the venue as they’re smiling at all of the guests in the aisles, the third shooter can capture this moment as the happy couple leave as a married duet.
Seamless movement doesn’t just happen without careful planning and consideration. So, you will have to think the angles through before the wedding day arrives, but here are a few of the ideas that we’ve come up with to get you started. There are certain things that you need to do to build an impactful story throughout your images. Your storytelling will benefit from well-choreographed movement so, preparing in advance is one of the best pieces of advice that we could give you!
Lead Shooters, Second Shooters & Third Shooters - In the simplest terms, the lead shooter is the person looking to capture the full story. Lead shooters are generally stationed down the back of the aisle as that is where you’ll capture the full story of the ceremony. It is important to position each shooter before the recessional begins. During the first kiss, lead and second shooters generally stack up (stand next to each other) and capture the kiss at different focal lengths of camera lens. After the kiss, lead shooters should walk to the front of the aisle and track the Bride and Groom as they walk toward the back of the aisle.
Second shooters watch and work off of the lead shooter. After the lead shooter has established his or her position, the second shooter can then find an appropriate location. This shooter actually has to be pretty skilled and, on the ball, as they have to adapt to what the lead shooter is doing, in a way that makes sure they’ve got the coverage that the lead shooter has, without mimicking their images. Usually second shooters focus on the details.
Just as second shooters take their cues from the leads, thirds watch and work off of second shooters. Third shooters can stay behind and capture grip-and-grins of family members and other VIPs/guests as they start to exit. We hope you’ve found this article useful, be sure to check out some of our others at the bottom of this page!