Why rehearsal shoots are worth it #Ceremony Advice#ceremony#photography January 5 | Guest post by Jessica Charlton All photos by Southern California photographer Anthony Carbajal I loved reading this photographer's sponsored post wherein she explained she likes to shoot rehearsals to get an edge on lighting and shots, as well as get comfortable with the couple and their closest friends and family ahead of time. Then it caused me to remember: I'd hired ONE photographer to shoot my ceremony, that would involve TWO parallel aisles, which I and my loved ones were to walk down in alternating pairs. I imagined my poor photographer Anthony Carbajal panting as he constantly ran back and forth from one side of the 20-foot wide guest seating area to the other to get each couple as they approached the altar, trying his best to roll with the punches without any preparation. I decided paying him extra to shoot the rehearsal was a small price to pay for my peace of mind. What I didn't anticipate was how he'd catch the true joy and love my family and friends feel for us and each other. Coming from all parts of the US, they all arrived at the ceremony site; some of them were seeing each other for the first time in years. He also caught us and our loved ones just being ourselves: I love this sweet candid of my brother in-law, Tom, and his partner, Analisa. And this one of my bridesmaids Lydia and Adrienne doing what looks like the beginning of some ballet drills… How gorgeous do fellow Tribe member @NatNNate and Heather of Pixie Crust look in this photo?! And, vain though I may be, I love this one of me cracking up, probably at something my friend and officiant, Will, is saying. Needless to say, I can't recommend rehearsal photo shoots enough. If it's in your budget — go for it. And if it's not in your budget but you want it, maybe register for the amount at an online cash registry, or at the very least ask a friend who knows how to use a camera to capture it? Seriously… the natural, emotional, candid photos I have of my loved ones from this shoot are just as special to me (maybe even more) than a lot of the gorgeous photos from the actual wedding. And that's pretty special! Get your daily dose of Offbeat AWESOME Reporter Name * Reporter Email * Original text Enter the original text here. Edited text* Enter your suggested copyedit here. Notes You can add a note for the editor here. * Required information. Fix Typo Guest post written by Jessica Charlton By day Jessica researches music to help US television stations pay their music bills. By night she's a craft artist and musician. Her nerdery also extends to comedy and podcasts and she had the honor of teaching crafts two years in a row at maximumfun.org's MaxFunCon. Her partner, Frank, tests software for a wireless hi-fi system, and is a freelance music producer and engineer. She is also Offbeat Bride's DIY Editor! http://offbeatbride.ning.com/profile/ieatglitter PREVIOUS Lauren & Chris' polka dot bowling alley wedding NEXT A guestbook you can cuddle with: How to make a wedding quilt guestbook Show/Hide comments [ 8 ] Great idea! I ended up with some candids of our rehearsal BBQ because our friend Nathan (husband of one of my bridesmaids) was there with his nice camera but had no in-ceremony responsibilities. So he just kinda hung around taking pictures of stuff and things, and they came out great! If I had thought of it and if it had been in our budget, having our pro photog there would have been nice. He was great on the day of the wedding, but we'd never met him in person before that and obviously didn't have much time for chit chat on our wedding day. Oh well, maybe when we do a vow renewal a few years down the line… Reply I wish I would've thought of this for my wedding! I totally agree that photos of me and family & my husband's family just being ourselves would have been an awesome addition to our wedding album. Reply THIS! Yes. I totally agree. I'm shooting a wedding this weekend for an OBB couple, and apparently there's a giant Nativity scene on the altar and the surrounding steps. There are spotlights on it and everything. I am so glad they opted to have me at the rehearsal; you have no idea. Reply We invited our photog to the rehearsal so that she would have an idea of the lighting and the staging. She said she might take a few test shots but we weren't expecting anything special. Then she gifted them to us as a bonus! We don't have printing rights to them, digital only, but they're nice to have to look at. I may buy a couple of prints from her to add to the album. Reply BTW I finally got around to posting them on flickr, after being inspired by this post! So thanks for that! http://www.flickr.com/photos/plymouths/sets/72157628804271593/detail/ Reply What a great idea, and you look adorable in the last picture! I like the idea of the SO's who are just along for the dinner/ride being able to take pics as a form of inclusion in the wedding process! Reply This is a wonderful idea! I love how genuinely happy & excited everyone is to see each other. It's all very sweet Reply Oh wow this is too funny, Anthony is my photographer too! I might have to look into this… Thanks for the post! Reply Join the conversation Cancel Reply Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *Comment Participate in this conversation via email No-drama comment policy Part of what makes the Offbeat Empire different is our commitment to civil, constructive commenting. Make sure you're familiar with our no-drama comment policy. Biz owners & wedding bloggers Please just use your real name in your comment, not your business name or blog title. Our comments are not the place to pimp your website. If you want to promote your stuff on Offbeat Bride, join us as an advertiser instead.