Wedding photography can be confusing at times. Photographers use a lot of lingo that is everyday jargon to them but can leave others wondering what they are talking about at times. We’ve compiled a list of words that you may not have heard of, or maybe you want some more clarification on a term that you’ve heard. We’re here to help!

Bridal Portraits – Bridal sessions are a long-time Southern tradition where the bride [aka you gorgeous] takes stunning solo portraits before your wedding day. These sessions take place 1-2 months before your wedding day and serve as a test run for your wedding day. The goal in a bridal portrait is to look almost identical to how you will when you are walking down the aisle towards the love of your life!

Engagement Session – Engagement sessions are a great way to start getting comfortable in front of the camera with your significant other. This session allows you to show the everyday, genuine side of your relationship.  There are many different locations in Houston where couples take their engagement photos. A lot of couples use their engagement photos on their save the date, wedding website, and frame some for the reception for all of their guests to see. You can think of your engagement session as a date night that happens to have someone there to capture the fun, genuine moments that take place! This session captures where you are now and this sweet, exciting time full of anticipation. These may be the last professional photos taken of just the two of you before your wedding day and before you start a family.

First Look photos – First looks are a newer part of wedding days + wedding photography, but dang are they incredible! A first look is when you and your fiancé see each other before the ceremony. It can seem a little scary to go against tradition, but there are so many benefits to having a first look, you will be so happy you decided to do one! You may be fearful that it will rob the joy of your groom when he sees you walking down the aisle. That’s totally understandable. But this moment is so so special, as well. It’s probably the only time on your wedding day where the two of you will get to be alone. There’s no one around except your photographer who is slightly removed to capture the moment as authentically as possible. There’s no pressure at this moment; you get to experience every emotion you are feeling with your soon-to-be spouse without any distractions. There’s a sense of peace that overcomes you as you get some jitters out of the way. The photos captured in these moments are ones you will cherish for a lifetime.

Shot List – This is a checklist of different photos you want us to take. This is very handy when it comes to family photos. Knowing who you want to be a part of these photos allows this session to be as efficient as possible! With a list like this, your wedding photography team can get back to capturing candid wedding photos quickly!

Second Shooter – This will be the additional wedding photographer assisting your main photographer. Their job is to capture candid moments and different angles than what your lead photographer is capturing. They serve as a right hand and help ensure every moment you want to relive is captured!

Online Gallery – Online galleries have become a very popular way for photographers to deliver your wedding photos. This gallery will showcase all of your edited and delivered photos. Some galleries have online stores attached to them so you can receive prints, canvases, etc.

Wall Art – canvases or large prints to decorate your home with. Having a canvas on your walls of one of the most special moments of your life will always bring you back to that moment and make you smile.

Printing Rights – you will want to be sure and ask your photographer if you will have the rights to print your photos wherever you wish. Some photographers only allow you to print within their online gallery or directly through them, which is totally okay! This is something you want to be sure you know beforehand, so you aren’t surprised!

Gift Credit – some photographers will offer their clients gift credits. Think of this as a gift card for your wedding photos. The credit will allow you to purchase wall art, albums, prints, and so much more!

Golden Hour – No, this isn’t Kacey Musgraves’s amazing album [but you should definitely take a listen to that]. Golden Hour should actually be called Golden Hours. It’s the two hours prior to sunset where the light is just downright awesome! This light will allow you to have the most flattering portraits with no harsh sunlight casting shadows.

Shutter Drag – this is a really cool feature that your wedding photographer can do during your reception. They hold the shot and move the camera to give the lights in the room movement. It gives your reception dance photos even more energy. You really get to relive the day as you can feel the energy in these photos!

Now you know more about photography jargon and can navigate conversations when it comes to planning your wedding day photography.