Why we don’t photograph the groom getting ready


Every wedding photographer in Northern Ireland will have their own way of doing things. We certainly have ours. We have found that when we both photograph the bride getting ready we are able to work a lot more efficiently. As just one example, in the case of a hotel wedding the bride will often stay at the hotel the night before. As we are both there it allows us the option of one of us staying with the bride while the other goes to the ceremony room to photograph details. This means that nothing gets missed. Having two of us with the bride also means that it’s much easier for us to photograph details like the dresses, shoes, flowers and jewellery without taking up too much time. Most of all though we just prefer to work together, we both have different strengths and we just feel that we are always at our best when we work together.

Photographing a wedding


Photographing both the bride and the groom getting ready would add additional expenses for us. We would have to pay the costs of running both of our cars for business use. We would then have to add those additional costs to our current prices making every wedding we photographed more expensive for our clients.


When we first started photographing weddings we did split up and one of us would go to the bride and one of us would go to the groom but we stopped doing this several years ago. We often found when we arrived with the groom that they weren’t really that keen on having us there. We found that a lot of the time that the groom had agreed to having us there because it was something that the bride had wanted rather than what he had wanted. We feel that a large part of delivering awesome photos to our clients is building a good relationship with them on their wedding day. That relationship really helps in terms of making our clients relaxed and comfortable around us when it comes to later on in the day, so this wasn’t always the best start to the day.


Yes, it’s true. Sometimes we do photograph the groom getting ready. At some weddings the bride and the groom will both get ready from the same location. For example, with hotel weddings sometimes both the bride and the groom will stay at the hotel the night before. In a situation like this we are always happy to go and grab a few shots with the groom as well as the stuff we always do with the bride if that is something that the couple want.

Loughshore Hotel Wedding groom getting ready
Malone lodge wedding groom getting ready


At every wedding we photograph when working out a timeline with our couples we explain that we aim to leave about 45 minutes or so before the bride. This allows us time to get to the ceremony in plenty of time, have a quick equipment check, have a quick look at the ceremony location and a chat with the officiant. The chat with the officiant is always important, some have specific rules for photographers and they don’t always explain this to the couple beforehand. This also allows us some time to have a chat with the groom and to grab a few photos of him and his groomsmen before the ceremony and of guests arriving. After this one of us will go outside to meet the bride as she arrives while the other stays with the groom. This means that we can photograph both the groom waiting for the bride with his groomsmen and the bride’s arrival. It’s probably worth pointing out though that this is not always possible as sometimes the bride runs late getting ready and we aren’t able to leave in time to do this.

Ten Square Hotel Wedding groom getting ready
Clandeboye Lodge wedding groom getting ready


We are always happy to photograph a “first look”. This allows you to have photographs of you both together before the ceremony. A “first look” can be one of the best times to photograph you both together because it can be one of the most emotional parts of your wedding day. We will cover “first look” in more detail in another blog post later on.


A few weeks back we met with a couple who where interested in us photographing their wedding. We had been really busy at the time so had to arrange to meet with them a couple of weeks after they had contacted us. By the time they had met with us they had already met with a few other wedding photographers including another wedding photography business who advertised as being a husband and wife team. One of the first questions they asked us was if we both took photographs during the wedding day. This was because one of the other photographers they had met with while advertising as being a husband and wife team, only one of them actually used a camera during the wedding day while the other assisted, carried equipment etc.

We were surprised by this but as it turns out after chatting to a few of our wedding photographer friends that there are quite a few wedding photographers that do this. Another couple we met with just last week asked us the same question, we didn’t get into details about why they asked but we assume it was for the same reason. We both take photographs during all of our weddings. There will be times during the day while one of us takes lead and the other takes candid photos or assists but you will have two photographers.

There are a lot of talented photographers around and every couple should be able to find wedding photographers that suit what they want most. If photos of the groom getting ready are really important to you, we won’t be the photographers for you but it should be easy to find another photographer who can offer what you want. Before booking a photographer for your wedding though its always a good idea to ask them for a run through on how they work. Not all of this information will be available online. We don’t get to meet with a lot of our couples before the wedding day as most seem to prefer to handle all the booking side of things by email but we offer to call them and give a run through of how we do things to make sure that we are a good fit for what they are looking for.