The days, weeks, and months following your wedding (while waiting for your professional photos to be ready) are undoubtedly filled with anticipation and excitement. Once you get word that they're all yours, it's time to dive headfirst into reliving your wedding in all its glory. But now what? Once you've examined every detail and know all the images by heart, here are some ideas on what to do with them.
First thing's first: most photographers now share the final images with couples digitally, whether in a USB, flash drive or in an online dropbox. One of the first things you should do upon receiving the image files (other than gush over them and shed happy tears) is to back them up. You'll be protecting your memories—and your investment—by finding a second or even third way to back up and protect your files in the event they get deleted, mishandled, or expire.
Of course, you'll want to share a select few photos on your social media platforms. You might even opt to make an album for all of your connections to be able to peruse at their leisure. This is only natural! Just be sure that you are considerate of the fine line between simple sharing and posting overload. Select some highlights with a cute caption or two, and let the likes and comments roll in. Try not to post or share too much, though, as it's easy to get carried away.
The Traditional Album
In such a digital age, traditional photo albums and scrapbooks have become a thing of the past for many, but nothing compares to flipping through an album and getting all the feels. For such a special occasion, it may be worth embracing tradition and crafting a special wedding album to cherish and pass down through generations. Whether you opt to work with your photographer to create a leather-bound, luxury album for you and your families, or work with an online service like Shutterfly or Mixbook, creating a physical album from your wedding day is not something you'll regret. And besides, who knows where Facebook and Instagram will be when we're old and gray?
Prints and Canvasses
Go print crazy! Selecting your favorite images might be difficult, but this is an occasion where it's okay to go a little overboard. Thanks to the Internet, you can order prints, canvasses, photo gifts, calendars, and novelty items galore. Before you go completely crazy, take an inventory. Think of all the locations you may want a photo or two of the big day, and work from there. While you probably don't want to turn your home into a museum, having images scattered throughout is a beautiful way to relive the special times. It's okay to order a few more than necessary, too. You can always swap out images and have fun figuring out where certain photos, sizes, and frames look best.
Most married couples are eager to put their beautiful wedding photos to good use. One of the best and most timely ways to do this is by selecting your favorite images to use on your thank-you cards. Not only will your guests love seeing special moments from your big day as you express your gratitude, but you'll be sure that your images are being seen and appreciated, and not just posted on social media or stuck in a file-sharing space on the web.
You're not the only ones who have been anxiously awaiting your wedding images. For excited parents, in-laws, siblings, and besties, seeing your images for the first (or eighth) time can be just as exciting. To share in the love and excitement (and also get more bang for your photography buck) consider gifting framed prints or photo gifts to those closest to you for an upcoming holiday, birthday, or special occasion.