Over the years as a photographer, I’ve gotten to witness my fair share of emotional, sweet, and fun elopement and wedding first looks! Whether it’s at the beach, on a mountain top at sunrise, or in the middle of the forest, the moment when couples see each other for the first time is always AMAZING!!
Often I get asked questions like “We are eloping – can we still do a first look?” or “How to plan a first look?” so I thought I’d address these questions in a blog for you!
A first look is a relatively new tradition where couples choose to see each other before the actual ceremony, typically in a private, intimate setting. It’s one of the sweetest and most emotional parts of your wedding or elopement day, and it also allows for great photo opportunities.
A first look is easy enough to pull off! We will set up your partner with their back against you, so you can sneak up on them, call them by their name or tap on their shoulder. So when they turn around, we get to capture all the sweet emotions of them seeing you for the first time.
Another option for a first look is when both of your backs are against each other, and you turn around at the same time when prompted by your photographer.
When you are choosing to elope, you can absolutely include elements that people are considering to be “more traditional”. You can cut a cake, have a first dance under the stars, and definitely have a first-look experience!
That’s the beauty of eloping – it can be whatever you want it to be! Include all the activities and traditions that matter to you and your partner! And if you’re looking for some activity inspo – here’s a list of my suggestions!
If you’d like to include a first look but do it your way, here are some unique and fun first-look ideas!
There are a few ways you can include writing love letters on your elopement or wedding day! You can write the letters the night before or in the morning.
Then you could read each other’s letters before you see each other for the first time. You could exchange them during the first look and read them out loud in front of each other. That would make such a heartfelt moment and absolutely beautiful photos!!
You could also write the letters on the day, however, only open them on your anniversary! That’s also a cool option for a little memento and remembering all the love and excitement you felt on your elopement day!
Exchanging gifts during your first look is another great way to add a personal touch. The presents should ideally be something meaningful and personal, or something you know the other person would love to receive.
This one always gets a good laugh! This might not be possible if you’re eloping with just the two of you and your photographer. But if you’re having a bigger celebration – consider dressing a groomsman in a thrift store wedding dress and have them greet your partner!
Of course, afterward, your partner gets to meet you! 😉
A first look can be paired with celebratory shots together! Share a drink and toast to your future together! This idea works particularly well for couples who share the love of a particular drink or maybe had their first date over a drink.
A blindfolded first look can add an extra layer of anticipation for the big reveal! One of you (or both!) are blindfolded and guided towards each other. And then you can take turns removing blindfolds or do it at the same time!
Just keep in mind that this one might not be the best idea with all the hair and makeup you might be getting done for your day.
Whether you choose to do an elopement or wedding first look is totally up to you and your partner! Whatever you do for your day, just make it yours!
And if you’re still looking for your dream elopement photographer, I am here to help you create the experience of a lifetime. Inquire here, and let’s get started!!