Why rehearsal shoots are worth it

Guestpost by Jessica Charlton on Jan. 5th

In which our DIY Editor, Jessica, puts down the crafting goods and gives us her perspective on why asking your photographer to shoot your wedding rehearsal can be a really good idea.

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.

All photos by Southern California photographer Anthony Carbajal.

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!

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About 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!