Rainy Wedding Day Tips for Photographers


May 15, 2023

So there’s rain in the forecast on the wedding day? First…don’t freak out. It’s Colorado after all. Just give it five minutes and the weather will change! And everybody knows rain on a wedding day is good luck! 

In all seriousness, we’ve had tons of experience photographing weddings in the rain. We want to assure you that it will NOT ruin the day! There are simply some things you should know and ways to prepare to be sure the day unfolds just as your clients imagined it would! 

BRITS TIPS: After it rains, the colors are insanely BRIGHT and VIBRANT! Overcast skies can diffuse the light and allow the colors to really pop. All is certainly not lost when you’re dealing with a rainy day! 

Rain on Wedding Day at Sweet Heart Winery | Britni Girard Photography - Bride and Groom enjoy post rain portraits with vibrant colors in field

The good news is, we’ve mastered the art of creativity when it comes to unexpected wedding-day weather. So here are some of our go-to tips to be fully prepared for a rainy day wedding! 

Show Up Early

You’re definitely going to need to build in some extra time to scout out portrait locations for both indoor and outdoor options. That rain will likely come and go throughout the day, so don’t just assume you’ll be 100% indoors! You’ll want to grab those outdoor shots whenever you can! 

Rain on Wedding Day at Sweet Heart Winery | Britni Girard Photography - Tips for Photographers for rain on a wedding day - Shoot Wedding Party under Covered Porch

Find a Covered Porch

All you really need is a porch to make some magic. As I mentioned, just because it’s raining doesn’t mean there isn’t great light surrounding a wrap-around porch or canopy. Look around for some options that have an overhang to keep everyone dry.

Get a Good Weather App

The generic weather app that comes with your phone likely won’t cut it. You want to be sure to get one with a doppler you can trust. Yes…today you’re going to add meteorologist to your list of special skills! Feel free to do some research, but here’s an app we love. 

WUNDERGROUND – This app uses sensors in very specific area’s to track the exact weather in that location. It’s great for seeing the doppler and what to expect.

Rain on Wedding Day at Spruce Mountain in Larkspur | Britni Girard Photography - Tips for Photographers for rain on a wedding day - Get a Good Weather App like Wunderground

Clear Umbrellas

Seriously, the best investment for rainy day weddings is to have some clear umbrellas on hand! They still allow light to shine through while protecting your bride’s curly updo. If it’s just a light drizzle, we’ve even had Jeremy hold the umbrella over the couple and I just edit him out later. (It’s not the easiest option, but I promise it goes a long way with your couples when you go the extra mile).

Here are the Clear Umbrellas we recommend because they are wider and don’t cover your face.

Look for Trees and Bring Some Towels

Finger’s crossed that your location has some tall trees nearby. These are great to have your couple stand under for portraits, as long as there’s no lightning and it’s just a drizzle. Having your couple stand close to the edge will still get great light on their faces and protect them from the elements. If you find yourself under a tree after it’s been raining for a bit, you’ll want to have a towel on hand for any big drops that fall from the leaves!  

Protect Your Gear

When your couple is safe under a tree or porch, it’s likely you could still be standing in the rain. So for us, Jeremy will simply hold an umbrella over me while I keep snapping away, keeping my camera dry! A simple cover that fits over your camera is also a great idea, but we often find this is more of a hindrance than a help.

Embrace the Indoors

Take advantage of your time inside while you hide from the rain! There are still great portrait opportunities if you put on your creative hat! No need to pace back and forth waiting for the weather to change – you can still keep everyone’s mind off the rain and have some fun inside!

Don’t Forget Your Flash

I know you don’t want to hear this, but there’s a strong possibility that at least some of your portraits might be happening indoors. In a dark barn. 

Be ready to create that glowy backlight with a well-positioned off camera flash! And even if the rain stops and the skies could stay dark, it’s best to be prepared to get a little help from that flash, even outside. Check out our handy gear checklist so you can be sure you never forget a thing! 

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    Have a Flexible Timeline

    When creating your wedding day timeline, always assume things will take longer than planned. One way we combat possible delays due to weather is to sprinkle (no pun intended) portrait time throughout the day rather than all at once. This way, when Colorado weather decides to go crazy, you have back-up options to ensure your couple will still have amazing photos when the clouds finally clear.  

    So what does that look like for us? We have portraits scheduled right after the first look, following the ceremony, at golden hour, and sometimes even under the stars!

    Make the Most of Your Down Time

    If the ceremony start time is delayed, consider taking the photos originally scheduled for later in the day, such as reception details. Don’t be afraid to move things around as needed! If you’d like some ideas on how we plan things out, check out our wedding day timeline! 


    AND FINALLY…Don’t be Afraid to Communicate with Your Couple

    If rain is in the forecast, I can promise you your bride is well aware, and it’s possible she’s heartbroken that her dream wedding will now take place indoors! But we’ve also had couples ready to dance in the rain! 

    Checking in with your couple before the big day is important for two reasons: 

    First, to make sure they have a rain plan worked out with their venue and so you can have an idea of what to expect rain or shine. 

    Second, to give them encouragement about their Plan B! You can reassure them that it’s still going to be an amazing day. They’re going to marry their best friend, no matter what the weather does!

    With a little planning, you’ll be able to tackle a rainy wedding day with no problem! And your clients will love you for being calm, cool, and confident in what could otherwise feel like a super stressful situation! 

    And remember to laugh it off, dance in the rain, and wait for the rainbow!

    We’d love to connect with you more!

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