The One Question You're Forgetting to Ask Your Wedding Photographer

In all of the excitement of planning your wedding, you might have forgotten to ask your wedding photographer one very important thing: Will I receive a sneak peek?


Honestly, I forgot to ask my own wedding photographer. But sneak peeks are something I prioritize for all of my clients. Here's why.

One of the main reasons sneak peeks are so important is that you're going to want to post something on social media ASAP. More often than not, your family and friends have been sharing images all over their own social media channels. It's super nice that they're excited to share photos from the big day and it's fun to see everyone using your hashtag. But those typically just aren't profile-picture-worthy images. You'll want something of your own to post, something that will stop people in their tracks when they're scrolling through their feed. You deserve to post something special, something that will "wow" everyone, something where you look your absolute best, something that truly represents all of the time, money, and effort that went into making your day happen.


Unfortunately, during peak wedding season, it can take some photographers months to send images back to their clients. But it's agonizing waiting to see the professional photos of the wedding. So, many newly-weds settle for sharing that poorly-lit, slightly-blurry iPhone shot from aunt Sheryl instead because it's better than nothing.


Another reason a sneak peek is so important is that it helps you remember the day. Your wedding will go by so quickly and it might be a total blur, even just the day after. Or you might have had an unplugged ceremony (by the way, your photographer will thank you for that!), so you don't even have iPhone shots of the most monumental piece of your day. If your photographer can give you just one photo, that will help you re-live that moment over and over, so you can continue basking in that wedding bliss just a little longer.


Here are some key shots that make a great sneak peek you could ask your photographer for in advance:

  • The first look reaction

  • One classic bride + groom portrait

  • The first kiss at the ceremony

  • Walking down the aisle after being announced

  • Grand entrance

  • Your first dance

Personally, I just get too excited about all of my weddings, so I'm always chomping at the bit to edit your photos ASAP. I stay up super late the night after your wedding anyways backing up all of my files a thousand times, so why not make use of that idle time and edit some of the stand-out images? Typically, I give my brides about five sneak peek photos before 8pm the next day, but sometimes it will be more like 30+ because I just get too excited.


The bottom line is this: I'm a firm believer that it's my duty as your photographer to give you a sneak peek after the most important day of your life as soon as possible. My philosophy is a 24-hour sneak peek, but I know some photographers have a goal of sending a sneak peek within the week or as soon as you return from your honeymoon, so that's better than nothing.

Is this something your photographer did or do you wish they did? How long did you have to wait to see your wedding photos?

Madeleine Wilson is a Seattle, WA based natural light wedding and engagement photographer.

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