Unplugged weddings are becoming more and more common, and as a photographer, that makes me super happy! If you’re not familiar with what an unplugged wedding is, it’s essentially a wedding where electronic devices are not allowed. Now some of you might be thinking, why does this even need to be a thing? Well, unfortunately, some people feel the need to snap their own photos on their phones or tablets during the ceremony and if their device gets in the way of the photographer, it can ruin the photo.
I’m sure many of you have seen them on social media before, a photograph from a wedding photographer where a guest leans out into the aisle to take a picture of the big kiss and the guest ends up blocking the photographers shot, or grabbing the auto focus of the camera and thus the photographer misses the shot. One of the most helpless feelings as a wedding photographer is seeing that happen in front of you at an absolutely crucial moment during the ceremony and not being able to do anything to stop it. The biggest moment of the day can be ruined by a guest who didn’t even realize what they were doing.
Not only will the bride and groom never be able to recreate that moment for a photograph, but the photo the guest took will never compare to what could have been created by the photographer. It’s a lose-lose situation for the couple.
So how can you make sure that nobody pulls out their devices during your wedding? I’ve seen it done a couple of ways. I’ve seen couples put up fun/cute signs at the entrance of the venue saying that they’re having an unplugged ceremony and to put your phones, cameras and tablets away. I’ve also seen couples have the officiant or a bridal party member make an announcement before the wedding asking that guests refrain from taking photos and videos on their phones or tablets. Both have worked very well in my past experience.
A small short announcement or sign can be the difference in a photograph you’ll have for the rest of your life and a photograph you’ll be upset about for the rest of your life. If you’re unsure about having an unplugged ceremony, trust me when I say it’s better to be safe than sorry. You won’t take away from your guests experience and you’ll certainly get better photos than a phone picture!
And to all the wedding guests out there, I have some advice. Be present at your friend or family members wedding. This is a special moment in the couples life, they invited you there so you can witness it in person, not through a screen. They’ve hired someone to take photos or videos, and I’m sure you’ll be able to relive the moment through photos online in the future. Enjoy the beautiful moment between the couple and I promise you that you’ll remember it just the same as if you took a photo of it.
You can download my FREE Unplugged Wedding Sign to use at your own wedding here.
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