Unplugged Wedding Ceremonies

In today’s world almost everyone has a smartphone, in fact in New Zealand over 70% of mobile users own one. Technology has completely changed people’s behaviour. Now smartphones allow content to be created, consumed and shared everyone on the internet at the touch of a button.

So what does this smartphone era mean for wedding ceremonies? And what are unplugged wedding ceremonies?

Smartphones are an amazing way of easily capturing special moments and events. So it’s not surprising that in recent years the number of people using smartphones to photograph and video weddings has increased dramatically. Thanks to the experiences of other couples, more couples now plan unplugged wedding ceremonies because they retain control over their wedding.

Here are some implications to consider:

1. Professional Photographer

Try to imagine this – the photographer is standing at the altar taking photos of the couple in the foreground, and the guests in the background. However multiple guests are holding up their smartphones taking photos also!. It’s pretty safe to say when you told the photographer you wanted photos with the guests in the background, that you didn’t want to see smartphones instead of faces! It’s certainly a lot easier for your photographer to move along the aisle if guests aren’t in the way taking their own photos.

2. Sharing your wedding first

Consider photos or a video of your wedding ceremony shared by your guests on social media, before you share the “official” versions. Don’t let Facebook ruin your wedding. It’s important to tell guests if you don’t want them to share photos of your wedding ceremony. Alternatively you can ask guests to wait a week until you can get your photos up first.

3. Being in the moment 

Do you want your guests to be watching your wedding with their own eyes or through the screen of their smartphones? Guests with smartphones or cameras are going to be distracted through the wedding ceremony unlocking phones, opening apps, changing settings and filters…

Unplugged wedding ceremonies ideas

If you have decided to have an unplugged wedding ceremony it’s a good idea to let your guests know – both in advance and on your wedding day. Consider adding a note on your wedding invitation or wedding website (if you have one). On the day you can add a note to the wedding ceremony programme and ask your celebrant to remind guests prior to starting the wedding ceremony.

Unplugged Wedding Ceremonies considerations

If you want your friends to get photos of the wedding ceremony you can instruct the wedding celebrant to advise guests before the ceremony starts “you have 30 seconds to go crazy taking photos of the couple and then all smartphones and cameras are put away”. Another way is to tell guests they can photograph the magical first kiss (the wedding celebrant can announce when it’s time to get smartphones out). The wedding celebrant can also advise your guests that you both will be available for plenty of photos with guests after the ceremony. This way guests get some great photos and then sit down, relax and enjoy your beautiful wedding ceremony.

I have certainly noticed a big increase in the number of couples that opt for unplugged wedding ceremonies. Of course the great thing is that you make the rules and decide what you want and don’t want for your wedding ceremony. Smartphones and cameras will ALWAYS play an important part in capturing amazing wedding day memories. Just make sure you have considered and are happy with what photos are taken and when they are shared.

Get in touch with me and let’s talk about designing your special wedding ceremony.

Glenys xx


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