A wedding is one of the most special days in a couple’s life. The memories of the day should last a lifetime. Hiring a professional photographer is one way to ensure that your wedding memories are captured beautifully and will be cherished forever.
Your wedding photographer will be with you throughout the entire day, from getting ready in the morning to the last dance at night. They will capture all of the special moments and the small details, that make your wedding day unique and special.
From your first look to your first dance, your photographer will make sure that all of the important moments are captured perfectly, so you can look back and relive them for years to come.
Today’s interview is with Emily Christisen, one of St. Louis’ professional wedding photographers! In this interview, she discusses her passion for photography, how she got started in the business, and what advice she has for couples planning their wedding. Here’s what she had to say:
1. What common mistakes do you see couples making?
When it comes to photography, a common mistake I see couples making is not paying enough attention to the details that will be photographed the most, such as:
Bouquets – Your bouquets are one of the most photographed details of the day, so in my opinion, it’s so important to hire a talented ﬂorist that can create an organic, timeless bridal bouquet and complimenting bridesmaid bouquets, even if that means spending less on centerpieces or other ﬂoral details.
Veil – Long veils are one of the most romantic and versatile details for bridal and couple portraits. They create beautiful softness, movement, and depth in your photos. And considering adding a blusher to your veil, even if it’s just for portraits. You won’t regret how etherial and creative the images turn out as a result!
Hair and makeup – Hiring someone without proper experience or doing your own hair and makeup can be a big risk on your wedding day. Hair and makeup will have a huge impact in every single image. If you hair doesn’t hold up through the weather, your foundation doesn’t match your skin undertone, or your concealer doesn’t completely cover your blemishes, it’s going to be obvious in your photos. Your photographer can only do so much to ﬁx poor quality hair and makeup during editing, so be sure to invest in professional work upfront and always have a trial for each service before the wedding day.
Bridal suite – When deciding where to get ready on your wedding day, having an area that is clean and spacious with lots of natural light is key to capturing luminous, eﬀortless bridal portraits the morning of your wedding day. You’ll want to look for a space that has light and neutral walls, minimal furniture and decor in the background, and large windows on multiple sides of the room.
2. What’s the best tip you have for a couple planning a wedding?
Consider a ﬁrst look! I know it’s not for everyone, but I highly recommend it for more introverted couples who want to share one-on-one time together before the busyness of the day begins. This time can be made even more special if you choose to share private vows or read letters to one another. If you plan to have an evening ceremony less than two hours sunset, a ﬁrst look is a must in order to capture your portraits with the best light.
3. What don’t couples know about your business that they need to know?
Unless you’ve been in a wedding that I’ve photographed before, you may not know how organized and eﬃcient I am with our time on the wedding day and how much I pay attention to the details. Being a recent bride myself, I know how important it is to capture all the beautiful moments, portraits, and details of the day quickly and creatively so that you can actually enjoy your day. My goal is to make the day as easy and enjoyable as possible from a photography perspective, which is why I include photography timeline and portrait list planning with all my wedding collections.
4. What questions should couples be asking that they don’t know to ask?
One question I see people often overlooking is how much split venue weddings are truly going to cost, not only in terms of budget but the overall experience for you and your guests. Having your ceremony and reception at diﬀerent locations (and sometimes even getting ready and taking portraits) is going to cost you more for various vendors, including:
Photography and videography – more time for travel between locations and possibly a second shooter depending on the timeline
Music – more time for setup and transportation if your ceremony venue doesn’t include sound
Coordination and ﬂorals – sometimes extra fees are required for moving decor from ceremony to reception
Transportation – an extra cost needed so your wedding party can travel together between locations
In my experience, the most stress-free and enjoyable weddings are those that take place at a single venue. It helps maximize the time you have for many parts of your day, such as visiting with your guests during cocktail hour to capturing more variety during portrait time with your photography and videography team.
5. What your best piece of advice for couples planning a wedding?
Before booking your venue and key vendors, take plenty of time to work on your guest list together. Your guest count with making the biggest impact not only on your budget but on how the day will feel for you as the couple. If you’re a more introverted couple, I would recommend considering a smaller guest list with only your closest friends and family—usually about 50 to 100 guests. This will allow you to say hello to each guest during your cocktail hour or reception without feeling rushed, and it will also help you create an unforgettable experience for your guests by having more room in your budget to spend on an amazing venue, incredible photography, excellent food, drinks, and entertainment, etc.
6. What’s the most unusual wedding you ever did?
The most unique wedding I’ve photographed took place recently in St. Louis when working for one of my photography friends, Ashley Pieper. Most of the wedding day was a traditional American-style wedding, but to honor the bride’s Chinese heritage after the ceremony, a traditional Chinese lion dance took place to bless the couple and wish them a long and happy marriage. Two lions danced to the beat of a large drum and chewed up heads of lettuce as an oﬀering to the couple to represent wealth and prosperity.
7. What was the most memorable wedding you ever worked, and why?
One of the most memorable weddings I’ve ever photographed was at Rusted Route Farms for a sweet couple named KK and Tanner. They were a very easy-going, free-spritied couple who opted out of a formal wedding party. Instead, KK invited her closest friends to get ready with her at the bridal suite, and the couple shared the color palette on their invitations so that all the guests could take part in the aesthetic of the day. As a result, the energy of the day was so relaxing and absolutely full of joy. KK and Tanner were able to experience some genuine, meaningful moments with one another during their ﬁrst look and portrait time.
When planning a wedding, one of the most important things to consider is who will capture the memories of the big day. For many couples, that decision comes down to choosing a wedding photographer that fits their style.
Emily’s style is romantic and refined. She captures the true essence of her subjects, whether it’s the bride and groom on their big day, or the bridal party getting ready before the ceremony.
If you’re looking for a wedding photographer who will capture your day perfectly, then Emily Christisen is the ideal choice. We know her creative flair and attention to detail will create beautiful images that you will treasure forever. Be sure to take a look at her portfolio. You won’t be disappointed!