Venue location is probably the most important decision you’d have to make during your wedding planning stage. However, once you start looking around there are literally hundreds of awesome venues just near your area. So, how to choose the perfect wedding venue location rather than just relying on ‘hope’ or ‘feel’? How do you differentiate the ‘good’ to the ‘amazing’ venue that you are going to remember for the rest of your life? As a wedding photographer here in Atlanta let me give you my very best advices on choosing your perfect wedding venue.
Pay attention to the lighting at the ceremony space
No matter your wedding is daytime or nighttime, outdoor or indoor, the wedding venue (specifically the ceremony area) must be well lit. If it’s an indoor area with no windows then make sure your photographer can handle this type of situation. Otherwise, make sure you check how well the ceremony area is lit from natural lights. Pay attention to the lights coming out from the windows and any kind of artificial lights (etc light bulbs) in the area.
Remember, most ceremony (especially Catholic churches) don’t allow flash photography inside the ceremony area. Therefore, if the area has poor natural light the photographer will have no choice but to increase the light sensitivity of their cameras (aka ISO) to compensate the lesser light. I don’t want to scare you, but this will somewhat degrades the quality of your wedding photos.
Also, when you are checking out your wedding venue location, make sure you go at the time similar to your wedding ceremony timeframe. That way you’ll have a much better idea of how the direction of light and the quality of light affects your ceremony during your big day.
The quality of the Plan B location
You should (actually I should say you must, but everything has exceptions) have a plan B for your wedding day! The quality of the plan B location greatly affects your decision to choose the perfect wedding venue location. If your wedding is outdoor and bad weather occurs. You need to know the alternative location is as good as your original space. Ask yourself do you have a plan B? To make things clearer let me break up the following scenario:
Perfect weather with outdoor ceremony – Yay! No plan B needed.
Raining with outdoor ceremony – Uh-Oh. What’s your plan B?
Perfect weather with indoor ceremony – Yay! May be change it to outdoor?
Raining with indoor ceremony – Phew that was close.
Size of the reception area
I’m not sure if this surprises you. But the size of the reception area greatly affects the reception photos from a photographer’s perspective. I’m not saying the photos will look bad and you should get the largest reception space possible. But from experience I tend to find that a wider open space (such as reception inside a large barn house or a large area open space) works really well for photos.
Think about wedding album
As I always mentioned, choose a venue that you want to tells your story. Do you want your wedding album filled with different amazing locations? Or do you prefer more pictures of families and guests? Do you want more dramatic environment portraits with your husband or a small compact area where all the guests filled the dance floor? This is totally up to you and I’d highly suggest talking to your photographer!
My name is Gary Lun and I’m an Atlanta wedding photographer that specializes in wedding and engagement photography. I locate in metro Atlanta but I do travel nationally and oversea! I am always looking for fun and friendly couples to capture their big day!
Email: [email protected]