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My Day As a Wedding Photography Assistant: 11 Reflections + 3 Insider Tips

Most of us think we know all there is to know about weddings, right?

A cake there, some flowers here, and a drunken groomsmen or two waaayyy down there, and you can call it a party.

But after moonlighting as an assistant for my cousin’s photography business at a local wedding, I have to admit, I definitely learned a thing or two about the biggest day of romance in a couple’s life straight from a professional wedding photographer…

  • 11 Things I Learned From a Wedding Photographer 1 of 12
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  • Brides really are beautiful 2 of 12
    beautiful bride

    I'm not sure what it is about brides. Maybe it's the love from inside, the pampering from the salon, or just the excitement of the big day that makes them glow. When you really think about it, have you ever seen a bride who didn't just look absolutely stunning on her big day?

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • It’s all about the dress 3 of 12
    dress

    I'm sorry, you can think what you want. Sure, it's a day that is commemorating a lifetime of love and commitment to each other, and it's a beautiful thing, but really, weddings are all about one thing: the dress. From walking down the aisle to hitting the dance floor, it's all about the guests getting to see that beautiful, beautiful dress. 

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • There is nothing more heart-wrenching than a groom crying 4 of 12
    groom crying

    It's the moment I look for at every wedding now: when the bride first appears at the end of the aisle, and all heads swoosh toward her. Except if I'm there, I'm looking where no one else is looking. I'm watching the groom, for his heartfelt and raw emotion. Will he cry? Will he smile? I mean, really, looking at that picture makes me tear up right now. So beautiful.

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • Weddings are sensual 5 of 12
    sensual

    Ok, so you know everyone really thinks about what's to come after the wedding (insert suggestive eyebrow waggle here), but after watching this video that my brother made of the wedding that I helped at (he was the videographer), I was blown away by the sheer sensuality in it. True love, indeed.

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography 

  • It’s not all blissful 6 of 12
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    I think weddings offer a fascinating look at love and marriage. It takes a lot of darn hard work to make things look flawless and picture-perfect, even if for a day. (I still have a scar from a vicious bee sting at this particular wedding to prove it. Ouch!)

     

    Image via Chaunie Brusie

  • There’s really no point to flower girls and ring bearers 7 of 12
    flower girl

    I don't say that out of a meanness of heart or a hidden disapproval of children. (I'm pregnant with my fourth, after all — I must kind of like kids ...). But honestly, there is really absolutely no sane rationale for expecting preschool and younger aged children to behave properly down the aisle after a long day and no nap, besides the cuteness and excitement factor. 

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • Weddings are fun 8 of 12
    fun

    Honestly, you would think with the sheer number of weddings we go through in our lives that things would tend to get a little, well, boring. But seeing this wedding through the eyes of an observer, not a guest, I had to admit: weddings never really get old. Celebrating love and life = fun. 

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • All receptions are the same 9 of 12
    receptions

    That being said, I will have to follow that statement with a clarification: when it comes to the reception, the recipe really doesn't change. Throw in some booze, some food that really all tastes the same, a heartfelt speech and a cringe-worthy toast, and you have the making of some really embarrassing selfies!

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • A good photographer won’t make you pose 10 of 12
    wedding

    If you happen to be a bride interviewing potential photographers, make sure you get a detailed list of poses that they are planning on doing or have at their disposal. Even if a bride thinks she knows what shots she wants, usually things don't happen as she planned. "There's nothing worse than a photographer that doesn't have a clue what picture to take and makes the bride have to think of poses!" exclaims Jacquelyn, owner of j&j brusie photography

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • Skip the post-reception family pics 11 of 12
    family pic

    This little wedding lesson came as a surprise to me. I discovered that those traditional after-the-reception shots when you jam all of your family, including one very tired set of grandparents, into the picture, can really be skipped over. "Always keep the family poses to a minimum in the church after the ceremony," advises Jacquelyn. "It's usually a very short period and very stressful for the bride and groom because they just got married and all the want to do is have a drink and celebrate with each other. I like to do more of the family group shots at the reception venue."

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

  • Sunset poses are the best 12 of 12
    sunset

    Just when you think you have smiled for your last picture, think again. The best shots usually come when you least expect it: an impromptu, romantic sunset picture with just the bride and groom. "I always try to steal the bride and groom for a quick sunset pose with just the two of them," says Jacquelyn. "It's romantic, intimate and they will love it!"

     

    Image via j&j brusie photography

Read more of Chaunie’s posts here or learn more about Chaunie (and her husband) by checking out her blog and following along on Facebook

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What It Really Takes For a Marriage To Survive Infidelity
Love On Opposite Shifts
Couple Celebrates Anniversary With $15 Hotel Stay

 

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