4 Quick Tips for Shooting the Wedding Dress

shooting dress photography

Out of the images you shoot during the wedding day, the brides dress is one of the most important to capture. Whether there is an emotional story behind it, or there is a unique reason she chose it, this is the dress she wanted to wear and have photographed on her big day. That’s why mastering the wedding dress photography is a must. 

Shooting Dress Photography

Here at ShootDotEdit, as a part of our online photo editing servicewe have the privilege of working with professional wedding photographers worldwide and see their unique photography styles. Sometimes, thinking of new ways to capture certain parts of the wedding day can be challenging, including the wedding dress. To help you find inspiration, and create images the bride will love, here are 4 wedding photography tips for how to photograph a wedding dress. 

1. Use an Elegant Hanger

Although the bride will likely have a nice hanger for her dress, bring along your own hanger that will photograph with the dress to match your style. Most of the time, a classic wooden hanger can create a more elegant look for the bride’s dress. Before she gets dressed, change the hanger to capture the dress images.

wedding dress wooden backdrop

Image by ShootDotEdit Wedding Pro, Jessica Claire

Also, if you decide to provide the bride with a gift, have the hanger customized with her name and wedding date. You can also match the hanger to the color of the brides accessories so it creates a stylish look for the photography of wedding dress.

Quick Tip

Be careful as you change the dress from its original hanger to the elegant hanger, and when you carry it to another location. The bride is counting on you to make her day special, so avoid the dress touching the ground or stepping on it.

Related: The 30 Most Important Shots to Take at the Wedding Ceremony – get the list here!


2. Capture Unique Shots

After you capture a few safe shots of the bride’s dress, try out a few new angles and ideas. The location of the wedding is part of the story, so find ways to place the dress that highlights where the couple chose to celebrate their special day.

If you are outdoors, find locations that include the environment or interesting architectural features. Try hanging the dress from a tree branch or in front of a unique background and allow it to hang naturally. (If it’s too windy, have your second shooter or assistant help you keep it still without including them in the photo).

While shooting the dress in an interesting location, switch up the angles so you can capture the scenery in the background. When you capture unique shots of the wedding dress, you contribute to the story of the wedding day.

Quick Tip

Be sure to capture the back of wedding dress photography for your bride. This means you include every part of it and highlight it in your wedding dress photography and your bride has the images to cherish for years to come.

Related: Which lighting techniques should you use during the bridal prep for details?

3. Incorporate a Few Other Details

Just as she likely would for a regular occasion, the bride may have other accessories she will wear during the wedding day. These accessories can be earrings, a bracelet, a belt, or a broach (many of the shots you would take during the getting ready portion of the day). To create unique images for the bride, include these accessories with the dress when possible.

If the bride has a necklace, you can place it over the hanger with the dress. If she has a belt, place it on the dress as you hang it. You can also incorporate her shoes into the shot. Hang the dress to the left or right of the image, and on an elevated surface (like an end table), place the shoes to showcase both details. Incorporating details with the dress can create exciting images for the bride, and can remind her of the reasons behind the items she chose for that day.

4. Gain Inspiration from Wedding Blogs

Because you want to deliver unique and dynamic wedding dresses pictures to your bride, take the time to look for additional ideas you can use for the dress images. Often times, viewing other wedding photography blogs or magazines can help you see what other photographers are doing with the wedding dress shot. There may be a few ways to shoot the dress that you never thought about before, and viewing these resources can give you the inspiration to take images this way.

When you look at other wedding blogs to see what else you can do, you may inspire yourself to do something completely different. Remember, constantly improving your skills as a photographer can help you grow and continue to create stand out images.

Related: How can using off-camera flash help elevate the images you take for the bride while she gets ready? Find out here!

Bonus: Set Standards for the Shoot

Before the wedding day, educate the bride about the getting-ready shots. Let her know that before you arrive on the wedding day, the room should be clean. This is where a detailed timeline comes in handy, so the bride knows when you will be there and you can shoot freely without distractions. If you do not prepare your bride before the shoot, you risk having to waste time on things other than shooting creative photos of the wedding dress.

When you master shooting dress photography for the bride, she can cherish the images for years to come. Discover the most essential images to capture during the entire wedding day when you download our photography playbook, filled with 127 must-have shots! Click the banner below to download your copy and use it at your next shoot.

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