1st First Look - Catherine Guidry Photography

January 18, 2011

1st First Look

My heart was beating at a much quicker pace than normal. And I began to feel the pressure of what was about to happen. I turned to Dustin and he was all smiles. He said his heart felt like it would beat out of his chest; he was SO excited to see her.

As I walked him to the edge of the brick pavement, I pretended as though we were shooting a few of him. And there she was…walking up behind him to surprise Dustin before the wedding.

The concept is much debated: Called the “First Look” it’s an opportunity for the bride and groom to see each other. I’ve talked to several of my couples about the pros and cons and they were the first to take the plunge. So, I was nervous. And I wanted it to be perfect.

Dustin had no idea his bride was walking up behind him. And as I was casually instructing him for the photos, I asked him to turn around, and there she was.

The moments to follow were priceless…

As the tears rolled down his face, my nerves disappeared. I photographed them without saying a word and captured this special moment for them.

Gretchen was the first to notice. As we looked over to our left, we saw their closest friends and family peering through the window….all smiles.

On the wedding day, things can get hectic. By reserving this time following the first look for a short session, I am able to capture the the bride and groom in a pre-determined location…alone. For the bride and groom on their wedding day, there is usually little to no time for them to spend alone enjoying the moment.


Thank you two so much for trusting me and for taking the risk. I couldn’t be more excited that you felt it was worth it!!!

By agreeing to a First Look, Gretchen + Dustin were able to enjoy the following:

  • Most importantly, they were able to see each other….ALONE…before anyone else. They were able to embrace each other, to cry, and to prepare for the biggest day of their lives. I asked them after if they could do it all over again if they would have waited and Dustin said,

“I was completely surprised and loved this moment…I wouldn’t change it for anything.”

  • We spent the time following their first look taking beautiful images of them….the type of pictures that usually get left behind in the rush of a wedding day.
  • They were able to take all bridal party pictures in the last bit of daylight…allowing for more creative bridal party images.
  • Family photos were also taken before the ceremony, allowing Gretchen + Dustin to go as quickly as they’d like into their reception.

I would LOVE to hear your thoughts on doing a “First Look”…no matter if  you’re for or against it.

Feel free to comment in the comment box below!

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