Sticking to tradition or throwing it out the window? Seeing one another before the ceremony is a big decision for today’s brides.  When asked this question by my couples, I have one simple bit of advice:  Be Authentic.  That is my answer to many questions so let me explain.

It is your day, your vision, your romance and as a bride and groom everything about your day should reflect you as a couple.  When it comes to first looks, sights, glances (so many names for this trend!) you should do what feels right and makes sense for your desired photography.

That is all well and good; but why would doing it one way over the other make more sense to you?  Here are some pro’s and con’s from a photographers perspective for you to weigh when making your choice.


  • Are either of you the nervous type or get flustered in front of large crowds?  At the thought of being the center of attention do your turn green?  If you (or your spouse to be) suffers from anxiety or some major nerves seeing each other beforehand takes the edge off.  Besides, you have picked this person to spend the rest of your life with!  They are probably the best cure to those anxious feelings and being apart just seems unnatural.
  • Get to the party faster! Guests can enjoy a short cocktail hour and then on to the party.  Why?  Because with a first sight most (if not all) of your formal photography can be accomplished prior to your guests arriving at the ceremony.
  • Location, location, location!  Seeing each other early sometimes means capturing daylight in the winter months before your evening ceremony, visiting a favorite spot, adding variety to your images by changing locations and having a relaxing time doing so (no rushing!)
  • Emotional responses and plenty of time to twirl in your gown and let that guy gush over your wedding day look.  Hug, smile, kiss, laugh and actually get to talk to each other when you see one another (during a ceremony you might get a whisper in – no major conversation until that ring is on!)


  • You’re a traditional kinda girl/guy.  It’s ok – if this is you then skip right on down to saying no to this trend.  If you love all things time honored and true you may regret stepping out of your box this time.
  • You are having a BIG split of time on your wedding day (think hours between the wedding and reception.)  If this is the case, all the pro’s above are null and void – you have so much time in between to take photos that you can be leisurely about it.

I love first looks – they make MY day easier because as a photographer we get tons of time to play and take photos.  But it is YOUR day, like I said.  Be authentic in your choices and in the end you will be pleased with your wedding and your photography!

-Tracy Autem

Check out these two very different first sights.  A modern hotel balcony or the center aisle of your ceremony site – a first look is tailored to your day and your preferences.

Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0016 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0017 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0018 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0019 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0020 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0021 Kelley-John-Ceremony-Robert-Carr-Chapel-Fort-Worth-TCU-Artspace111-LeForce-Post-Office-Tracy-Autem-Photography-by-Tracy-Autem-0022 Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com Tracy Autem Photography 2014 https://tracyautem.com

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