Let’s start by stating that we all have hugely different levels of modesty. One individual might have no trouble shedding all clothing in front of a room full of people, while another might start to feel highly anxious about the thought of baring their midriff. And one of the more sensitive areas that we address, as wedding photographers, are the photos of when the bride puts on her wedding dress. So let’s talk about that.
Many of us have different images in our heads from these moments: six bridesmaids and a mother surrounding the bride while her arms stretch through the top of an enormous dress. Brides have usually seen these images, and while, for some of them, no anxiety enters into their head at the thought of being photographed in their underwear while putting on a dress, let’s assume for a moment that you are a more modest bride. If we have not addressed the particulars of this moment beforehand, there will inevitably come a time when you turn to the photographer to find out what he or she expects from this scenario. It might be adding to your anxiety just thinking about it.
So let’s talk about your options beforehand so you can go into this scenario armed with some knowledge. You can absolutely make “getting into the dress” photos happen with your modesty intact. Your photographer (or your photographer’s assistant) can clear a space that has great light where he or she would like you to stand when you’re ready. Then, the photographer can either wait outside the room, or you can step into your dress in another room (depending on whether you want your bridesmaids around). Pull your dress up to cover your front, then simply hold it there while you call your photographer back in or you walk to your designated light-filled location. He or she can adjust where you’re standing if necessary, then they can get absolutely beautiful pictures of your mom or your sister or someone special to you zipping or lacing up the back of your dress for you. You won’t be missing out on your “moment” but you won’t have to stress at all about exposing more than you want to.
If modesty is not your bag, you can absolutely let your photographer stay in the room and they will get photos of all the dress-getting-on-craziness that might ensue. But don’t feel like this is a requirement, by any means. Your comfort always, always, always takes top priority. It’s our job to make great photos while accommodating you.