This was my first wedding in Aruba, and definitely not the last. I am heading over there again in two weeks. The one thing I remember the most was how good their surf and turf was. When it comes to outdoor evening receptions, I actually wish for a videographer’s tungsten lamp. It adds a dynamic light that can be offset from the camera. Sure you could bring your own flash and stand, but that’s kinda hard with a destination wedding.
There have been a good amount of weddings nowadays that don’t follow the tradition of bride and groom separated until the ceremony. There are a few reasons why this happens, and there are also advantages and disadvantages. The first and most practical reason is scheduling. When you have a tight schedule between the ceremony and reception, it leaves little time for formal portraits sometimes, so you are forced to take them while there is still day light, before the ceremony. The second reason is sometimes the couples just don’t care about certain traditions, and they don’t want to go through more trouble trying to hide from each other than not. The practical advantage of having formal sessions before the ceremony is to “get it over with.” I also like that feeling because for me, the formal session may be the most stressful part of the day. It feels great to know after all that posing, I can continue my photo journalistic style. The disadvantage I see that might occur during such early formal sessions is the lack of “fun factor” to the photos. You can’t trash your attire before the ceremony, so you have to be extra careful. It is also too early during the day to take high-energy photos, and you don’t carry over that “woohoo! the ceremony is over!” feeling/energy/vibe-instead you might still have butterflies. Fortunately with this crowd, there was no problem with them getting wild and dangerous during the “formal” session before the late afternoon ceremony. Not to mention, we were in Aruba. It was like shooting monkeys in their natural habitats.