The best things about summer weddings — crisp sunlight, outdoor venues and temps that inspire Katy Perry songs — are the same factors that threaten to ruin your photographs. To ensure your photos are literally picture perfect, we asked three wedding photographers to share their tips for no-fail summer wedding shots and on-site photo fixes.
Choose your ceremony set time wisely
Host your ceremony after 4 p.m. During "the golden hour" (or anywhere from 4-to-7 p.m.), sunlight will be less harsh and guests won't be blinded; plus this is the sweet spot if your vision is to be backlit.
"If you opt for shade under large tree for your ceremony, make sure that the sun is behind the tree (facing the guests) so the bride and groom don't get dappled light on their faces," says Brooklyn wedding photographer Katie Osgood. "This will also help shade the guests as the sun begins to set."
Your Wedding Is the One Time When It's OK to Throw Some Shade
Come portrait time, don't assume your photographer wants you in an open, sunny field. "Shade softens light and is friendly to both the subject and the photographer (we hate sweating too)," Osgood says.
As with the ceremony, time of day is also essential. "Absolutely try to do all portraits anytime in the one-and-a-half hour window before sunset," says Washington D.C.-based Sam Hurd. "Having the sunlight be side light instead of directly overhead allows for much faster, easier, and flattering photos."
If the heat won't quit, indoor space near windows is a great alternative. "If you're too hot, tell your photographer —t he sooner you discuss this with them the more time they'll have to scout things out on the wedding day and tell you if there are indeed viable indoor options," Osgood says.
Don't Leave Home Without...
Photo-essentials for summer beauty emergency kits should contain tissues for blotting shiny skin, a make-up fixative, stain remover pen and a battery charged fan. Other quick fixes? "I found that baby powder is one of the best bridal emergency tools there is," Osgood says. "When shooting outdoors, everyone knows it's hard work to keep a big white dress clean. Baby powder can be used to hide any blemishes that may have happened during a rugged portrait shoot."
If a dreaded sweat stain seeps through during picture time, New York photographer Miana Jun says to make a beeline for indoor shelter: "Plug in a hair dryer or use a bathroom hand dryer to get it removed even faster," she says.