How to be a Bridesmaid and a Photographer

Back in July I took on the task of being a bridesmaid AND a photographer for one of my best friend’s wedding. I know, I know. How do you manage to do two things at once?! My answer: lots of support! Was I slightly crazy to take on such a feat? Yes! Was it worth it? Completely!

This is my fourth time being a bridesmaid (I’m not quite as bad as 27 dresses, YET) and the first 3 times, each of my friends really regretted not having me as their photographer. They all wanted me to be their bridesmaid, but at the end of the day, the really wished I could have photographed their special day too!

After 3 weddings, I decided to shake things up! I had seen other photographers juggle the duel roles and decided to take on the challenge as well! Also, during each wedding I had a terrible time not photographing anything and had “camera withdrawal.” Yes, I believe that’s an actual problem for photographers! 😉

If you’re about to be in my shoes, and contemplating whether or not to take on the challenge, read my tips and decide for yourself! 🙂

Have a support group: I could not have ever accomplished being a bridesmaid and photographer if it weren’t for my amazing support group! My family and Justin helped me out so much on the day of the wedding and leading up to it! I even left my bridesmaid dress on the way to my hair appointment, and my dad drove over at 6 in the morning to bring it to me! Amanda, Alexi, and Justin were there on the wedding day and helped encourage me assisted me too! I couldn’t have done it without these guys! 🙂

Shoot the details beforehand: Before the wedding, I asked my friend to gather her details so I could shoot them the day before her wedding. That way, when all of the bridesmaids were getting ready, I could just hang out, be a supportive friend, and snap a few getting ready shots!

Have a strong second/co-shooter: Danielle was such an incredible asset to me on the wedding day! She was such a strong support and was able to get shots during the ceremony when I could not! I made sure to communicate with her on the shots I needed and she helped so much! If you’re ever in this position, be sure to get a co-shooter with similar style to yours too! I’m so thankful for all of the help Danielle gave me that day! 🙂

Don’t play hairstylist: I knew that fixing my hair and makeup on my friend’s wedding day was going to be the last thing I needed to worry about! I contacted my friend and stylist, Rachel of ELLE Style Studio and she took care of me! It was such a great way to start the morning! She helped me be calm and stay positive! Plus, she made me feel like a million bucks, so when I arrived at the Bridal suite, I could just focus on my friend!

Be professional: At the end of the day, remember you’re a professional. It’s important to be present, but remember to serve your friend like a Bride/client as well! Some people might not take you seriously (since you’re running around in a bridesmaid dress), but be assertive and command authority. You’re there to take care of you clients and make sure they get the best pictures they can. Do your job and do it well! 🙂

I hope these tips help! If you have any other questions, please let me know! I’d love to help in any way I can! 🙂

Here’s a behind-the-scene shot of me from Ashley and Brian’s wedding day from Danielle!
university of richmond cannon memorial chapel wedding photos

I’M  Ashley

a Richmond, Virginia WEDDING & PORTRAIT Photographer

I’m Virginia Ashley, but my friends just call me Ashley! I’m a wedding photographer based in Richmond, Virginia. Even though I live in RVA, I travel all over for photography, which is awesome because I LOVE to travel! I’ve been as far as California and have my passport burning a hole in my pocket!

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