first look vs. waiting for the aisle
If you're doing a first look...
I'm all about first looks! Although I do love a good reaction down the aisle, it's so nice to be able to have a quiet moment to yourselves when seeing each other for the first time. It also gives me plenty of freedom to be able to get both of your reactions rather than trying to only focus on the groom down the aisle!
Another benefit to doing a first look is the amount of freedom it gives you for your timeline! If you plan to do a first look this means we have as much time as we want to allow between getting ready and the ceremony for all of the photos! We can take care of Bridal party, Family photos, and the photos of you two all before the ceremony. Which means you get to join the party after the I do's rather than leaving everyone for all of your photos! These photos can take up to 2 1/2 hours depending on the size of your families and bridal party. That's a ton of time for you guys to be holding a smile while your guests are waiting for you at the cocktail hour!
If you feel like waiting for the aisle...
That's totally understandable! It's a really special moment! I would recommend trying to at least take care of Bridesmaids and Groomsmen photos before the ceremony. Maybe even photos with parents! Pretty much anything that we can do to save time after the ceremony if it's possible. Bridesmaids + Groomsmen photos can take up to 45 minutes all together.
I recommend beginning the family photos right after the ceremony is over so that your family doesn't stray too far. You can even let them all know ahead of time or have your officiant announce for them to hang back while everyone else makes their way to the reception or cocktail hour. After family photos we can go right into full bridal party! Pretty much all of the photos that involve a big group of people, we'll try to get done first so they can join the party and it's less for you guys to worry about. We'll end it all with photos of just you two! I try to allow at least 30-45 minutes for these photos!