In today’s day and age, there is something new brides and grooms have to decide upon for their wedding day..Will they do a first look? For those who have no idea what I am talking about, a first look is somewhat of a new thing, so don’t worry. A first look on a wedding day is a moment, usually set up by your photographer before the ceremony, where the groom sees the bride for the first time (or groom/groom or bride/bride, but you get the picture). It is a private moment (at least it should be) between the couple, with the photographer there to capture the reactions and emotion.

There are many pros of doing a first look, versus going for more of the traditional approach of the groom seeing his bride for the first time coming down the ails, and no cons honestly. From a photographers stand point, a first look is a dream! It makes for a smooth wedding day, with plenty of time for photos even before the ceremony, so we are not as rushed between the ceremony and the reception. Take Chelsea & Ben, for example. This couple planned it out to perfection! They did a first look in the same spot that Ben had proposed, how romantic is that?! We then were able to get some great shots of just the two of them, along the way to the ceremony & reception site. They had their immediate family and bridal party ready for photos before the ceremony even happened. So, after the ceremony, they were able to go right in to the reception and party the night away!



What is another great thing about a first look? It calms the nerves! For those who have anxiety, or get nervous in front of a lot of people, seeing the love of their life privately before they say I DO can be such a relief on the big day. And, there are many ways to plan out the first look as well. If you don’t mind some people watching, you can do it like Kim & Jerry did, in the lobby of the hotel they got ready at. Afterwards, we were able to get all of their bridal party photos and ones of just the couple. So, after the ceremony, we only had the family portraits to get done before the reception.


Want an alternative solution, where you still have the traditional look of coming down the aisle but still get to be in the presence of your love before the ceremony? You can follow in the footsteps of Carly & Jeffrey! These two had written personal vows to each other, but wanted to read them privately together and save the traditional vows for the ceremony, but also not see each other. So, I scoured the church basement and found a spot that they could be together, but not see each other. What an emotional, and beautiful moment it was. They even brought their photographer to tears.


You could also be like Natalie & Jeff! These two met in private, even without me, before the ceremony. No first look photos, but just a private moment alone. Jeff then walked his own bride down the aisle at Gervasi Vineyard.


If you don’t think a first look is for you, and you want the traditional way of you two seeing each other while coming down the aisle, do it! No one way is the right way. It is YOUR wedding day, do it how you want to do it. But, now you know there are plenty of options. Wondering what we did on our wedding day? My husband is more traditional, and he wanted to see me first when I was walking down the aisle. And I would not change a thing! Here are some more traditional weddings below, and the groom seeing his bride for the first time.



Lindsay Dawn Photography

Northeast Ohio Wedding Photographer

First look, traditional, or something unique? Ideas for your wedding, from other weddings! – Northeast Ohio Wedding Photographer


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  1. Summer says:

    Love that you have laid out all of the different choices! What a great way to educate your clients!!

  2. Tricia says:

    I LOVE intimate private moments like the first looks, first prayers, or first touch.

    I stress To my clients that they really pick something that fits THEM.

    This is such a great read!

  3. Audrey says:

    Awww, love these unique and personal ways of doing things!!

  4. Ashton says:

    Such great suggestions! I’m all about the First Look!

  5. Sarah JOHNSON says:

    I love first looks but what great information on the other ways.

  6. Great ideas and the first look is such an intimate moment between hubby and wife

  7. First looks are so amazing. It is like getting two special moments at their wedding. The opportunity to both see and talk to each other privately, and the official act of becoming united in front of your special guests. So cool! Love your article!!!

  8. Vanessa Hicks says:

    Great post! I love first looks! They are my favorite and no couple who did them ever regretted them!

  9. Shawndelle says:

    These are amazing wedding images. Congrats to the happy couple.

  10. Melissa says:

    Love this! I personally feel that having that time together (first look or not) is such a nice touch! If time permits, I think it helps calm the nerves, even just getting to hold their hand and speak before the ceremony begins!


    First looks should be mandatory! lol

  12. Amber says:

    What a great post! I can definitely see the attraction to both first looks and the traditional way of things though. Totally straddling the fence on this debate

  13. Jessica Hunt says:

    Your blog post has got me thinking! I need to write a First Look post!!

  14. Raina says:

    What wonderful options. I love that there are so many different ways to handle this. I always recommend to my clients to select something that fits THEM regardless of what anyone else says.

  15. So glad you laid out the options like this! how far do you travel? my sister is in northeast Ohio and looking for a wedding photographer!

  16. Oh this is the perfect collection of the best moments! So many different ways to capture the first look and you’ve shown here so many of these!

  17. christie says:

    This Northeast Ohio Wedding looks SO beautiful! You must have so much fun being a Photographer !

  18. amanda says:

    I just love the images you have capture of Northeast Ohio Wedding couples. Shows how much of a talented photographer you are

  19. bectheodd says:

    I just love how you explain all the options that couples have when it comes to their wedding day! Are you a destination wedding photographer as well?

  20. Hanna says:

    I am so pro first look! I think there is something so intimate and special getting to see each other first when you can be alone and more vulnerable with each other. I have though seen some very sweet moments with crying grooms seeing their bride come down the aisle that sway me 🙂 beautiful images all throughout a great informative blog!

  21. Melissa says:

    I adore both sides, honestly! I think first looks are incredible for taking that pressure off but still having that intimate moment (and of course getting family formals DONE), but I completely get why couples still hold on to the tradition!

  22. Every couple is so different there’s really a right choice for everyone- and there are so many alternative options to a first look that still allows for an intimate moment shared between the bride and groom. I love how you laid out all the options!

  23. Meghan R says:

    Great collection of first look options (or alternatives) from an experienced Northeast Ohio wedding photographer! Lots of great options for couples on their wedding day to consider.

  24. tpozphoto says:

    I love that you gave several options for couples to decide what is right for them! I personally love first looks, but there is no right choice for everyone! Great advice from a great Northeast Ohio wedding photographer!

  25. sarah Funk says:

    oh my word, what an incredible collection of your most incredible images!!!! Ohhh boy do I love first looks… with grooms and dads!!! You are such a talented Northeast Ohio Wedding Photographer

  26. Alyssa says:

    This is great info on the first look! I’m definitely a fan of first looks. It also totally get why some people would arather not! This is great info for anyone looking for a northeastern Ohio wedding photographer!

  27. Lynn Marie says:

    I love first looks. Love them! I wish someone had encouraged me and my husband to do one before our wedding. I was so nervous! Love all of the images here too. Gorgeous! Fantastic wedding advice from one of northeast Ohio’s best wedding photographers!

  28. photographybylynnmarie says:

    I love first looks. Love them! I wish someone had encouraged me and my husband to do one before our wedding. I was so nervous! Love all of the images here too. Gorgeous! Fantastic wedding advice from one of northeast Ohio’s best wedding photographers!

  29. Jennifer Calderon says:

    My husband and I both did a first look and agree that some of our favorite moments came from that from that 15 minutes togetherr. I can see the appeal of both sides but always recommend that couples carve out a few minutes just for themselves.

    Beautiful photos!

  30. Lacy Clagg says:

    What fantastic ideas! Wedding Photographer’s always have the best tips! I will be recommending you to my Northeast Ohio friends!

  31. christie says:

    We had a first look at our wedding 14 years ago when it wasn’t as popular and if I were going to get married in Northeast Ohio I would definitely want my Photographer to be you!

  32. Jessica Kent says:

    Beautiful! Such a great Northeast Ohio wedding photographer.

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