romantic wedding couple
Elizabeth Fogarty

Finding the right photographer is arguably one of the most significant aspects of hiring your vendor team. You want a photographer whose work resonates with your style, along with images you’ll want to share on social media and treasure in albums for many years to come. And modern couples may also be looking for a pro who is proficient in the latest wedding photography trends, from photo styles and backdrops to equipment and more.

So what are today’s couples looking for when it comes to capturing the details of their special day? Experts shared the biggest wedding photography trends to watch in 2019.

bride and father walking down the aisle black and white
Melissa Oholendt Photography

A Return to Tradition

For years, the “first look” has dominated wedding photography trends, giving couples a private opportunity to see other another for the first time on the big day. This also gave photographers’ added time to capture portraits of the couple, families, and the wedding party before the ceremony officially commenced. However, this year Melissa Oholendt of Melissa Oholendt Photography in Saint Paul, Minnesota said she’s noticed more couples taking a classic approach to their first look moment, and not without good reason. “I'm seeing a resurgence in wanting to keep that first look for the ceremony aisle, which means more and more couples are okay forsaking cocktail hour time for photos in the name of keeping that sweet traditional moment,” Oholendt said.

romantic wedding first dance
Melissa Oholendt Photography

Emotional Captures

Wedding photography shared on social media platforms like Pinterest and Instagram was once filled with larger-than-life captures, but according to Melissa Oholendt that’s taking a subtle shift. “I am seeing more photographers sharing touching or impactful moments versus epically staged portraits, such as mountaintops and wide expanse of valleys,” said Melissa. “I think we'll always see those epic portraits, but I love that photographers are also sharing the photos that live on forever for our couples in terms of moments.”

couple on rooftop
Elizabeth Fogarty

Next-Day Sneak Peeks

Gone are the days when couples had to wait weeks or even months to catch the first glimpse of their official photos. Instead, fine art wedding photographer Elizabeth Fogarty in Germantown, Maryland said some clients are now requesting a handful of images delivered the next day to share with their online community—a major wedding photography trend.

“Couples love to share next-day sneak peeks on their social media, so some are looking for photographers who offer next day turnaround images,” Elizabeth Fogarty said. “We work super hard to provide next day images to our clients so they can post on Facebook and Instagram as an announcement.”

floral wedding cake
Elizabeth Fogarty

Share-Worthy Details

According to Elizabeth Fogarty, 2019 couples are more carefully curating their wedding details with both photography and guest experience in mind. Planning the details isn’t merely an afterthought, but serves as an opportunity to showcase a couple’s personal style. “From the invitation to the cake, everything about the guest experiences matters. Velvet invitations? Check! Custom welcome gifts with local snacks? Check! Floral walls to take selfies in front of? Check! Everyone has gone to a wedding and knows what works and what does not,” Fogarty said.

wedding moss photo backdrop
Elizabeth Fogarty

Picture-Perfect Backdrops

It’s no secret wedding guests often post images and videos to social media in real time, and Elizabeth Fogarty has noticed one wedding photography trend: Couples are intentionally creating picture-perfect moments made for Instagram. “You have to do it for the ‘gram! Your guests got all dressed up for you so we are seeing our couples have a flower wall or another backdrop where guests can take pictures or selfies in front of, Fogarty said. “It's usually placed in the cocktail hour so they can pose with a drink in their hand and capture what an amazing time they are having at your wedding.”

Pair that ‘gram-ready backdrop with the perfect hashtag and any couple’s wedding photos are guaranteed to be a hit both online and off.