More and more people are choosing to elope rather than throw a traditional wedding. This comes with significant savings because you’ll no longer need to budget for your venue, catering, transportation, and more. With all of that money saved, you can now splurge on one of the most crucial parts of your nuptials: photography.
So even if you’ve decided to go for a more intimate feel for your day of “I dos” and focus on the bond between you and you’re partner, that doesn’t mean you don’t need a photographer! As a destination wedding photographer I really understand the connection between travel and weddings. In this article I’ve put together, I want to explain why wedding photography is still an important part of a wedding, even when it’s just the two of you, plus share a few things to consider when choosing who to hire for your elopement.
Why should you hire a photographer for your elopement?
Here’s why photography should still be non-negotiable even if you’re no longer throwing a big wedding:
Preserve such a special, once-in-a-lifetime moment
Your elopement may be free from the fuss of a traditional wedding, but it’s still one of the most memorable events in your life. Whether you want to elope in a city or in another country, it’s an occasion you’ll want to cherish for years to come.
While you may think you’ll remember your day forever, most couples consider their day of “I dos” to be a blur. Memories may fade, but with the help of an elopement wedding photographer, you’ll make sure that as the years go by you’ll always have incredible photos and memories captured. That way you can look back on them whenever you want. Not only that but there is the possibility that these photos could be passed down through family members through generations.
Captures the true essence of your elopement
Many photographers specialize in documentary-style photography – an artistic style that captures your wedding as it unfolds. It aims to capture raw, candid moments as they occur, without any direction, save for a few posed photos thrown in. This results in pictures that perfectly capture the emotion of each moment and the essence of your ceremony.
When you look back at your wedding day or elopement years from now, you’ll be transported back in time. You’ll get to relive every emotion, from the jitters you felt on your way to the venue, to the overwhelming joy you felt as you said your vows. You’ll have a collection of amazing wedding photos that tell a complete story of your elopement, from your chaotic, getting-ready moments to your first dance together as husband and wife.
Receive professional, frame-worthy photos
No offense intended at all to your family members, but more often than not, they don’t have what it takes to document your day. A professional photographer, on the other hand, will have the right cameras and experience, allowing them to take high-quality photos that you’d be proud to blow up and hang on your wall. Furthermore, they can find the most picture-perfect sites and will have experience working in various environments. The elopement photos you can see in this article are from my time working as an Italy wedding photographer for Yana and Travis.
Besides, wouldn’t you want to escape with no one but your partner (plus your officiant and witnesses)? Other people’s presence can take away from the intimacy of your wedding. And while you will notice that your photographer is there (they can’t exactly blend in because there’s no crowd to blend in with), they will try to be as unobtrusive as possible.
Take advantage of unique photo opportunities
One of the perks of eloping is the opportunity to pick a venue without the constraints of your budget, a long guest list, and the area’s accessibility. You’ll get to choose an unconventional venue, whether that’s surrounded by mountains in Lake Como, in a forest, in a hot air balloon, or even out on the streets of London! Wherever you plan to elope, your photographer will be willing to journey to these out-of-the-box places with you.
Running off to a less-traveled area offers plenty of unique photo opportunities that you wouldn’t otherwise have at a typical venue. Do you want to pose in the middle of a field in Tuscany? Want to say your vows at the very top of Snowdon? Or perhaps you’d prefer to be backdropped by a waterfall? This is your chance to take all the fun, creative, and adventurous photos you’ve always wanted!
Share your elopement photos with loved ones
Today’s elopements are nowhere near as secretive as they once were. Some couples opt to invite a few of their closest loved ones, while others throw a micro-wedding that could still pass as an elopement.
But what if you don’t want to invite anyone but your officiant and witnesses? What if you want it to be only between you and your spouse-to-be? How do you make your uninvited wedding guests not feel left out? Working with an elopement photographer allows you to relive your memories with your loved ones, making them feel as if they were right there with you.
Things to consider when choosing an elopement photographer
Not everyone can document your day the way you want it to be documented, so choose your photographer carefully. Here’s how to tell if your photographer is the right fit for you:
They have experience with elopement photography
An elopement is much more intimate than a full-fledged wedding and its focus is entirely on the couple. Photographing takes a specific set of skills, specifically the ability to spot emotionally-charged moments. An experienced photographer will be familiar with the affair’s flow, allow things to unravel, be willing to travel, and be comfortable working in your chosen location, regardless of the conditions. If you’re unsure whether or not you would like your elopement in your home country or overseas, here are some reasons to get married abroad.
They make you feel comfortable
When it’s time to take some shots of you both together, a good photographer will guide you and your new partner on how to be in front of the camera. You don’t have to worry about awkward poses because they’ll help you feel comfortable in front of the camera. Also, they’ll know when to intervene and when to let you and your significant other do your thing.
They have the right photography style
When it comes to finding the right elopement photographer, have a look through some portfolios to gauge if their artistic style is what you’re looking for. How do they edit their photos? Does their style tend to lean toward dark and moody, or light and airy? Are their photos mostly posed portraits or are they more photojournalistic? If you aren’t sure what your preferred style is, go on Pinterest and pin wedding photos that you’re drawn to. Using these photos, find a photographer who shoots weddings in a similar style.
Capture your special day with Stephen Walker Photography
Whether you’re planning to tie the knot in the countryside in the Cotswolds or anywhere in the world, I can be sure to do a great job of photographing your elopement. As a documentary-style photographer, I’ll put the spotlight on the intimate moments that make your elopement truly meaningful to you and your partner. My dates book up quickly and I only take on a small number of weddings each year.