….perhaps the most dreaded four letter word in a bride’s vocabulary.
Of all the questions I am asked by brides when talking about their wedding, “what happens if it rains?” is the one always asked with the most trepidation.
My answer in a nutshell is to simply “smile”!
Essentially the key to a great wedding in adverse circumstances is in the way you deal with it.
There are so many reasons why your wedding day should be the happiest day of your life, so to let the one thing that you can’t control alter that is more than just a shame. At the end of the day you will still be married to the man you love, surrounded by your closest family and friends, and if you keep the big picture in mind you will still have fantastic memories captured by your photographer. After all if you are happy and soaking up the inherent joy of the occasion (no pun intended but i could easily take that further…) then a good photographer will be able to capture that, and create memories of the day that you will cherish forever.
There are certainly things to keep in mind if it is really wet of course. Locations and timing may change and the way we photograph will sometimes be different in response to that. Whilst we will always encourage our brides to not be stressed about the dress getting dirty, we won’t be aiming to soak up puddles with it! We always bring white umbrellas with us too so that have one less thing to worry about! If you do want to get your own umbrellas we would usually suggest plain white and certainly avoid coloured or striped ones. Tartan are pretty much always a no-no, but still seem to be the fashion with some wedding car drivers. Same goes for big advertising logos…. we photographed a wet wedding once where the celebrant had an umbrella emblazoned with a funeral parlour logo! Seriously.
From a photographic perspective, there is often the opportunity for some great candid images. Rain can be really atmospheric and overcast conditions often provide a softer more even light. Being ready to go that extra mile or react quickly to changing weather to get the shot will reward you with something wonderful. Technology can also help. I won’t forget in a hurry one of the wetter weddings i photographed at Watson’s Bay. At the end of the ceremony it looked like the weather was closing in so I checked the Bureau of Meteorology rain radar on my trusty phone and saw a big rain front coming. We quickly asked the priest if they could leave the church open for us for a little while, postponed family photos and raced up the hill with the bridal party where we were able to create some beautiful candid and also dramatic images in less than ideal conditions, but before the torrential downpour! If it wasn’t for the attitude of a wonderful couple and their flexibility to change their plans suddenly and trust me, we wouldn’t have had the same end result. (Thanks Connie and Alex!)
Another thing is that often the rain can pass and you have awesome light or rainbows. Storm fronts always make a spectacular backdrop too!
So a few tips:
1. Dont’ stress!
2. If you are planning an outdoor ceremony, make sure you have a back up plan
3. Discuss wet weather photographic locations with your photographer
3. Make sure you have matching umbrellas (solid white or black) organised well in advance