Creating a shot list for your photographer is one of the most important things on your wedding to-do list and we’re all for thinking outside of the box and getting seriously creative when it comes to this wedding day task. Adding props, interesting locations and pets are just a few cool ways to make your pictures a standout (and, let’s face it, give a serious spike to your Insta likes). We asked Toronto-based wedding planner Rebecca Chan owner of Rebecca Chan Weddings for her favourite original wedding photo ideas—here are her five suggestions (and amazing examples from recent weddings she planned!)
1. Use sparklers.
These hand-held fireworks look fantastic at night, especially in outdoor spaces like a garden or terrace. Check to see if your venue allows sparklers and can help facilitate lighting them all at once for your guests. “I love doing sparkler first dances just before kicking off the dance floor,” says Chan.
2. For your first look, do something fun!
“This couple incorporated a balloon release (in their wedding colours of course) as part of their first look. It took a little bit of coordinating, but it was so worth it,” says Chan.
3. Include your favourite things.
Do you love to play softball together? Do you have a pet? Include your favourite hobbies or furry friends as part of your wedding photo session. “I’ve hired dog sitters to transport (and dress up) pooches for photos outside the church,” says Chan.
4. Think of cool locations that don’t require photo permits.
“Scout for interesting locations weeks before the wedding day with your photographer to find something uniquely you and different than just the same old park setting,” Chan advises.
5. Incorporate bridesmaids’ or groomsmen’s gifts.
When selecting gifts for your wedding party, consider something they can wear either on, or while getting ready for, your wedding day. “Something matching but personalized always makes for a great photo, whether it be shoes, a fun tie bar, or cute pajamas,” says Chan. It can even be something fun that you can eat together as part of the getting ready portion of the day, like cotton candy!
“The best advice for great photos is to be present in your celebration. Be yourself. Don’t sweat the small stuff and have fun. Your natural beauty will show through in your photos when you are relaxed and enjoying your day,” says Chan.