You’ve planned your wedding for a long time now. But have you ever thought of the day after? Long after your wedding day is over, you’ll be reminded of each detail, each moment through your photographs. The better they are, the more you love them, the stronger your memories will be.

Yet having great wedding photos doesn’t “just happen”. Anyone can shoot. But is an average photo truly going to capture the feelings of your day? If you want great photography, it means selecting the right photographer and giving the time necessary to create every image. Are you planning these 5 things into your wedding day?

Stress is a natural part of the wedding day. You’ll be under pressure from the moment you get up in the morning until you head out the door in your limosoine, whisked away to the honeymoon suite. Weddings are all about choices. If you’ve thought of every last detail, planned every moment accordingly, and are comfortable with your choices, the easier it will be to relax. This is the one day that’s all about you; yet you have all kinds of people surrounding you. Put other people in charge. Your best man can keep phone numbers for vendors and bridal party members close by, and be in charge of rounding everyong up for special events. Your mom can make last minute decisions on placement of flowers. You sister can run last minute errands for the things you’ve forgotten. Focus on relaxing and enjoying your special day. The only one who will know about tiny problems is you.

Be Willing To Give In Order To Receive
In order to have beautiful, posed portraits of you, your new husband, and family and friends, you’ll have to dedicate the time to have them created. Do you want to see each other before the ceremony? Are you willing to have your guests enjoy cocktail hour without you? Make sure your photographer understands what you are willing to do. And the final results you would like to achieve.

Talk About Your Expectations
A photographer isn’t a mind reader. If you don’t tell her what photographs you are looking for, and what means the most to you, she may not capture what want. If you’ve seen the “perfect” photograph in your friend’s album, share that image with your photographer. Talk about what you like … and what you don’t like. Let her know of special guests and groupings you would like captured. Discuss timing for events and what you will do throughout the day.

Understand Lighting
The trees. The background. The views. Its why you’ve chosen your location. Yet your expectations may not be possible if you don’t time your event accordingly. A 7 pm wedding ceremony in December means pitch black night skies, and dark backgrounds in all of your photographs. Talk with the wedding coordinator at your event center and ask for details about the timing of your event. They work dozens of weddings every year and can show you how each area will look at different times of the day. Then talk with your photographer about capturing what’s important to you. To get what you truly desire, there is always a way. You may just have to be flexible with your expectations.

Have Fun
When your big day arrives, everything should be set in place and solidified. Which means very little can be changed, even if its not exactly what you anticipated. Things happen. Things change. But one thing won’t – your love for each other. Put all your plans aside, accept things as they happen, and have fun on your special day. This is the one day that’s all yours, so make the most of it. Go with the flow. Enjoy every moment for what it has to offer. Smile more. Hug lots. And remember this is your day to shine.