Should your wedding photographer scout your venue first?
What's a scouting meeting?
It's a scheduled time for wedding photographers to scout out formal shot locations from the couples' wedding venue, go over the timeline, and even test lighting conditions. Every wedding photographer has their own way of approaching this process. Here's a snippet of my process with this.
demystifying the Process
I'd describe my approach as easy-going, flexible, and efficient. A scouting meeting is by no means a requirement with me before your big day. But if the venue is new or you would like to go over the logistics of the wedding with me, I'm your girl!
I recently went to two scouting meeting, one at a familiar venue right around the corner from where I live at The Fremont Foundry and another at The Arctic Club a new venue I'll be photographing in May. At both meetings, I was delighted to meet the wedding florist, Crimson Haze Lighting, and the wedding planner (Maggie Kay Events). Their feedback was invaluable in terms of where to put the photo booth, best locations for First Look photos, wedding party photos, and more.
Meeting with my bride in person before the wedding day is always a treat. Getting to know her personality, vision, and personal taste helps me with my creative process
Here's a peek at a recent scouting meeting. Don't you love those details in the ceiling at The Arctic Club?
The Arctic Club
Scouting Locations (the before and after)
After going over the timeline with my adorable engaged couple (pictured here on the left), I headed out to scout all the possibilities for background location during the wedding. I simply took photos with my iPhone and made notes of my creative vision as the wedding photographer.
One thing that Caleb was very clear about was wanting a picture with this enormous polar bear in the reception room. I wasn't sure how serious he was but it made it in the photos I sent the couple after the meeting, and guest what it made it on the wedding day! See more samples below from the scouting meeting and how we used that as a baseline for adding trust and confidence for the actual wedding day.
When I saw this bar area, all I could pre visualize was this image of the guys all dressed sitting on each barstool. Can you see it?
This is the beautiful entrance of The Arctic Club and location we talked about having some night photos and family photos taken at.
Check out these other locations as possible photo locations, all walking distance from the venue.
Although we try to plan for every situation during a scouting meeting, in the end, what makes the final decision on where we place our coupes for their wedding portraits is based on the best lighting and the weather of the day. During the scouting meeting, I try to plan for where the sun will be at the time of the portraits but again with the time change it can all be different on a wedding day, so my assistant and I always arrive 30 minutes prior just to double check everything could still work.
Venues | The Arctic Club