Preparing for Your Bridal Portraits Five Quick Tips to Have a Successful Bridal Session

Today, many brides are opting to have a bridal portrait session with their wedding photographer before the big day. These sessions are a great chance to slip into your wedding dress and capture some extra portraits. Bridal portrait sessions are meant to be fun and in order to keep them stress-free, here’s a few tips for your bridal session!

bridal portraits by Jessica Smith Photography in Fairhope AL

5 Tips for Your Bridal Portraits

Tip #1: Schedule your session for after your final fitting.

Once you’ve got an idea as to when your final fitting for your wedding dress will be done, send me an email. We want to get you on the calendar between whenever your dress will arrive back to the shop and your wedding day. Plus, knowing that your gown will be completely altered and ready to wear means there’s no stress in wondering when your dress will be done! 

Jessica Smith Photography captures Alabama bridal portraitsTip#2: Choose a location that you love.

For some brides, this might be the venue they’re getting married at. For others, it may be somewhere you’d love to have portraits at but may not make logistical sense on your wedding day. We’ve got some beautiful venues around us here. Take a look at The Grand Hotel, Little Point Clear, the Pillars, Lucia Bleu Cottages and Bella Sera Gardens for some inspiration locally!

tips for Southern Bridal portraits by Jessica Smith Photography

Tip #3: Use your session as a trial for hair and makeup.

Still not totally sure what you want to do with your hair or makeup for your wedding day? Try out the look you’re thinking about for your bridal portraits! If you’re doing anything out of the ordinary, it’s also a great chance to feel comfortable wearing more makeup than normal or a different hairstyle.

five tips for a successful bridal portrait session with Jessica Smith Photography

Tip #4: Bring someone with you!

Whether it’s your mom, sister, best friend, or mother-in-law, having someone with you to help with your dress, jewelry, veil, and just general support can be a wonderful way to keep your session stress-free. Try to keep the number of people low (like when you shopped for your dress!) so it isn’t overwhelming. 

Tip #5: Have fun!

These portraits are a chance to just enjoy being a bride. Take some time to have a glass of champagne! Enjoy your makeup and hair trial, and be excited to wear your wedding dress another time!! Wedding planning can be stressful. So, look at these portraits as a chance to do something for yourself before the big day. 

portraits of the bride with Jessica Smith Photography

Bridal portrait sessions are a great way to celebrate being the bride! I love photographing brides in their gowns before the big day. There’s something so special about those moments. Not to mention, these portraits are always a great chance to be artistic and have some fun with the bride! Plus, we don’t have to rush to your wedding day to get a ton of bridal portraits. We can enjoy some time capturing other portraits – or letting you have some time to breathe. If you’re ready to book your bridal portrait session, send me a message here

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meet jessica


I am Jessica Smith. I am a wedding and portrait photographer based in Spanish Fort, Alabama. Born and raised in Alabama, I have lived on the Gulf Coast for the most of my life. After adventures with my husband’s job in the Coast Guard, we decided it was time to follow our hearts and settle down back on the Eastern Shore of Mobile Bay. Being from Fairhope, my southern heritage is apparent from the time you meet me. My southern “twang” and my love of Alabama football are the giveaways. I am a wife and a mother to three gorgeous sons. I also love to garden and promoting wellness in the world.  

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