Couples hire us as their Wedding Photographers because they want the most beautiful photos of their special day to look back on. When there’s so much effort thrown into creating an event such as a wedding, why settle for mediocre snaps when you could get magazine worthy images of it all. The investment into a good photographer is worth it for pictures which stir emotions and amaze. Melbourne offers so many different options … it’s the most amazing city for Wedding Photography!
We’ve photographed so many weddings and have learnt what works for a great set of wedding photos. If you do want a picture perfect wedding, do consider following our guide. With some careful planning, it can be achieved. The only thing we can’t control is the weather but, rain or shine, we will give you magazine worthy photos of your special day regardless. Melbourne Wedding Planning – let’s get started.
The Melbourne Wedding Venue
This is normally the first on the wedding planning list. Venues can be booked up to a year in advance so book that venue of your dreams first. Choose a venue which will suit your style and cater for your needs. Picking a venue based on the price or it’s availability can sometimes lead to the wrong choice. Try not to cram a lot of people into a small space, making sure there’s enough room to move and dance. The catering can also make or break a wedding.
Consider parking for your guest, or some available transport (such as a bus) which will pick guests up and drop them off at the end of the night. This is great for places in the country or inner city venues where there is limited parking.
Choose a venue which has a great interior finish. Will the furnishings or the rooms and the surrounding areas look lovely in your photos and give a good reflection of the type of couple you are? Is there enough natural or artificial light in your chosen venue? Light is the most important factor for good wedding photography. We are very capable of shooting in the most difficult of lighting situations should you have your heart set on a venue with inadequate lighting.
Picture Perfect Locations for Melbourne City Couples
- The Windsor Hotel
- Crown Towers
- The Langham Hotel
- The Docklands
- Alto (Melbourne GPO)
- Carlton Exhibition Building
- Melbourne Town Hall
- Mon Bijou (Flinders Lane)
- Federation Square
- State Library
- The Dome
- The Prahran Hotel
Picture Perfect Locations for Country Couples
- Stones (Yarra Valley)
- Gum Gulley Farm
- The Briars (Mornington)
- The Farm Yarra Valley
- Yerring Station
- Baxter Barn (Mornington Peninsula)
- Tanglewood Estate (Mornington Peninsula)
- Olivigna (Warrandyte South)
- Tanglewood Estate (Dromana)
- All Smiles Sorrento
- RACV Cape Shank Resort
- Red Hill Lavender Farm
- Sault Daylesford
- The Lake House Daylesford
There are of course plenty more options but these are ones which we love and consider to offer a lot of wedding photo opportunities.
The Wedding Timeline
To ensure your day runs smoothly, it’s good to map out how things will unfold. The timeline is especially useful to keep you on track throughout the big day. It’s helpful for the photographer who will use it to prepare for each special moment as they happen so that shots are not missed. A good photographer will help you plan your timeline, advising you on what is possible in regards to getting some great photos.
To get the most out of your wedding photographer, have a detailed timeline ready. Lots of couples make the mistake of trying to cram too much into the day and planning the day too tightly. If there are two different locations at which you are both getting ready, consider having the locations close together. If the venues are far apart, factor in the time that the photographer needs to travel.
Another mistake couples make is wanting too many different locations for their photo shoot. One or two locations is ideal. Any more than that will result in more time required for the photo shoot and possibly a stressed-out looking bride and groom and a flustered photographer! You’d be surprised at how much time is required to move from one location to the next! Parking can get tricky at some locations and a bridal team can slow everything down. Limit your photo shoot locations and your photographer will be more relaxed to create you those gorgeous images you’re after.
Always keep your photographer informed about anything which you wished to have photographed. Give them some prior warning! We have been caught in situations where we’re scrambling to capture moments because we were not given sufficient warning!
How To Start The Wedding Day in Melbourne
We always suggest that both bride and groom Start the day off with some celebratory activities with their wedding party. It doesn’t have to be anything extravagant, but adding something fun to start the day off with will add to your wedding story. This could be a nice breakfast at home or out at a cafe. Have little gifts for your bridesmaids or groomsmen to open during the course of the morning. Maybe include the parents.
For the boys, there’s a little more time to do something fun before the ceremony. Go play a sport to calm the nerves down or pick up an instrument and entertain your groomsmen. Just sitting around waiting for the ceremony is fine, but there won’t be a lot for your photographer to capture.
Brides might consider getting matching robes for their bridal team and serving a champagne breakfast. Give each bridesmaid a gift which shows your appreciation for what they’ve done for you in the lead-up to this day. Exchange some memories of each other. Moments which evoke emotion are always beautiful to have captured.
Have one room designated to getting ready. Ideally, this room is neat and tidy. We’ve walked into many rooms where clothes and bags are strewn everywhere! It definitely does not make for nice photos! Choose the room with the most natural light. The room needs to be big enough for someone (if not the whole bridal team) to help you into your dress – and enough room for your photographer to capture some of those moments!
Hair and Makeup
It’s highly advisable to organise someone to come to you to do hair and makeup. One of my brides found herself fashionably (an hour) late because her hair and makeup artist was running behind at the salon she went to! It’s just a lot more controlled when the preparations are all done at the venue you are getting ready at. The bride’s hair and makeup should be done last. The bridesmaids should all be ready to go by the time the bride is ready to step into her dress.
Tip: If you’re wanting some photos of your makeup artist while they are working on you, have them set up near a window for some natural light. Some makeup artists now have lights which mimic natural light. This will ensure that your makeup will look the same when you step outside. Ask your makeup artist to supply you with your own lipstick to re-touch with later on in the day.
Organise a nice mode of transport for the day. It’s really worth forking out a little for your transport if you want it in your photos. Find something which fits your style. It’s helpful to have someone to drive the couple around to take away the parking stress, especially if you’re in the city at any time throughout your day.
The Wedding Ceremony in Melbourne
Having the ceremony at the same venue as your reception takes away a lot of stress for both you and your guests. For some, a different ceremony location just can’t be helped. Allow some time at the end of your ceremony for people to congratulate you when planning your timeline.
Keep in mind that photos with family members and friends are best done just after your ceremony. You’re then free to go off for your photo shoot. Have someone who knows your family and guests to coordinate the group photos. This saves time and ensures that everyone who should be in the photos are there.
Tip: Take your time when walking down the aisle. If anyone (including bridesmaids) rush down the aisle, we’ll miss capturing them. Take time with the first kiss! A quick peck will not be captured! We need a few seconds to photograph your special moment.
The Melbourne Wedding Photo Shoot
Don’t go overboard with locations for your wedding photo shoot. Treat yourself to some relaxing time during your wedding photos. One or two different locations is ideal as discussed earlier. Some locations require permits (and a charge) for wedding photography which is paid by the bride and groom. Check with the council of the location or your wedding photographer.
Some out of the box ideas are great for Wedding Photography. Choose locations which shows your personality, especially if you’ve chosen the city for your backdrop. Consider if you’re a couple who loves the modern or vintage backdrops. Open spaces are good for those who just want some nice photos of themselves together without too much distraction in the background. The beach is one of the most beautiful locations for simple yet beautiful photos. Open fields in the countryside are perfect as well. You might want to consider incorporating some props or fun activities into your photo shoot.
These can include:
- A picnic laid out on a nice picnic blanket
- Some champagne and glasses
- Your own pets or other animals if you’re on a farm.
- Hoping onto a tram if you’re in the city.
- Grabbing a coffee or something to eat at a cafe
- Fancy car
If there is an amazing sunset, go outside for some photos! We’ve had to coax so many couples to leave their functions for a few minutes to get some amazing shots during that magical sunset time. We’ve also been unsuccessful in convincing some couples and it’s such a pity. After all the effort put into weddings, your photos will be the best memories of your special day. Make the effort to step outside if the light is right. It’s only for a few minutes but will give you beautiful photos for your lifetime.
The Melbourne Wedding Function
The music you select for your function will make or break your party. Some couples have got it very right, having their wedding guests dancing until the last song. Others have struggled with getting guests onto the dance floor. Ultimately, it’s your party and you can play anything you want to but if you’re wanting photos of a great party – get your guests dancing!
Try to limit speeches to a decent length. This might mean upsetting someone but a long, boring speech can really put a damper on the party atmosphere. If the people giving the speech are pre-warned about the time limit, they would be happy to accommodate.
With any significant happenings through the night, give the photographer plenty of notice to get ready!
These may include:
- The speeches
- The first dance
- The cake cutting
- The removal of the garter by the groom
- The bouquet toss
- The leaving circle
Also make sure there’s plenty of room for the photographer to get into the scene to photograph it! Sometimes it’s as easy as setting things up in the right spots. Your wedding photographer requires time to set up for some of these situations. It’s not always as easy as pointing the camera and shooting. Sometimes some adjustments need to be made, maybe a tripod setup is necessary, flash lighting may have to be added. It all doesn’t take too long but some advanced notice is required or your special moment could be missed.
So there it is – our guide to creating a picture perfect wedding. Follow some of our advice and you’ll get a better documentation of your day. These photos will be the most beautiful reminders of your wedding so it’s worth putting in that little bit of effort.
Happy wedding planning!