For many visiting Paris there are endless activities and sights to see and if you are visiting as a newly engagement or couple in love, then one of the many Paris photo tours might also be on your list. I talk about love a lot on French Wedding Style, but today I have the pleasure of introducing Olivier Lalin from WeddingLight Paris, who not only loves photography but from reading below also is completely in love with his city Paris.
Olivier shares with us his advice on Paris and his insider knowledge of Paris photo tours and how to make sure you get the best out of the experience. All illustrated with Kevin and Jamie from Washington’s, pre wedding portrait session with Olivier on the streets of Paris.
Olivier: “We all know Paris is one of the most glamorous and romantic cities in the world. Fittingly enough, Paris is even known as the “City of Love” and honestly who could deny that? It truly is a city made for lovers! Think about those adorable cobbled-stoned streets, the long Seine river was made to stroll down hand in hand, its many cafés that are so cozy and intimate and the charming neighborhoods that are just picture-perfect and exactly as you’ve seen them in movies.
Then there is the grandness of the Champs Elysee, the magic of the Eiffel Tower (especially when it’s all lit up at night) and the many lovely gardens like the Jardin du Lexembourg. Love is simply everywhere.
Regardless if this is your first time or not, if you’ve just gotten engaged and are coming to Paris then this time it’s something special. All those beautiful moments with your cherie (this is what we call our partner’s in French) should be captured. This trip will now be part of “your story” and having photographs will help keep those memories alive the way they should so that you may always have Paris — together.
Paris photo tours are a great way to preserve these special moments and see the sights at the same time. Photographers offer many different types and lengths of portrait sessions for couples who have just gotten engaged. However, I think the best option would be to have a three hour tour.
Often clients feel it can be done in as little as one hour. Yes, it is possible to do a portrait session in one hour.But, it does take more then a snap and a click to take a great shot. A three hour tour would give you enough time to relax, get comfortable with having your picture taken and really see and experience all the loveliest and iconic spots that the City of Love has to offer.
Think about this: you could begin the afternoon in Île Saint-Louis, a pleasant little island in the middle of the Seine river, cross along the wonderful picturesque bridges and head over to the classy neighborhoods of St. Germain des Près, followed by shots on one of the oldest bridge in Paris at Pont Neuf and end the day in the gorgeous Tuileries Gardens.
Or perhaps you and your cherie would like your tour to be more glamorous. You could begin at the magnificent bridge at Pont Alexandre III with its gold trimmings and elaborate statues, then head over to the fabulous Place de la Concorde and Rue de la paix, the lovely Place Vendôme and the magnificent National Opera. Paris is filled with many lovely spots and attractions and I would love to help you and your cherie experience all the greatness our wonderful city.
If you do decided to have a photo tour with a photographer, here is a little advice to prepare you and your cherie when out on the town. This year has been, how should I say, a bit capricious. But although we are at the mercy of nature’s whim, it doesn’t mean you can’t go out and enjoy the beauty of Paris. Rain or shine, Paris will always been attractive.
As Gil, the main character in “Midnight in Paris,” happily comments, “Paris is more beautiful in the rain.” However, an umbrella is always good to keep on hand. Something simple and small that can fit in your handbag and pull out if the sky decides to drizzle. France has a tradition of handmade umbrellas and for something a bit extravagant they are certainly worth seeking out. If the rain gets a bit too heavy, that doesn’t mean the afternoon is ruined. On the contrary, it’s just an excuse for another great photo opportunity at a nearby café for a little break with a coffee and a pain au chocolate.
Another tip that is very important, I believe, would be to take the opportunity to dress up. In a city that is all about romance, being elegant and chic is essential and quite fun. For a bride-to-be, I would suggest something classic and simple. High heels are wonderful, but it’s always good to have a pair of walking shoes in your handbag for walking in between shots. Also, some lip gloss or lipstick and a hairbrush are nice to have for any touch ups you may need during the shoot. Now for the groom-to-be, I strongly suggest a suit with a tie (or bow-tow!). Men in suits always look great in photos.
For the ladies, I know that I suggested that you take a few items with you, but leave your big suitcases and important documents, like your passport and credit cards in your hotel or apartment. There is no reason to bring them and it’s one thing less to carry on your tour.
For couples looking for something a little bit different, props are always a great way to express you and your cherie’s personality. Props can be anything, for example a hat or a pair of sunglasses if it is a sunny day to something more imaginative. Personally, I like to keep couple shoots simple, focusing more on the couple themselves. But it’s always great when clients come to me with ideas. Don’t be afraid to ask questions to your photographer. The shoot is about you, so being comfortable is key.
The last bit of advice and probably the most important would be to just have FUN! You’re in Paris, the City of Love, with your fiancé. You have hired a photographer to bring you to the best places, to document this fabulous moment in your lives, so just relax. Let your photographer to the work and for those of you who are camera shy, try not to think about the camera. Just be you because in the end that is what you want to see and remember, not those posed mannequin-looking shots.
You want something that has depth and feeling. Trust your photographer to help you get comfortable. It is their job to make you laugh and loosen up. In the end, you’ll find out that you had a great time and you’ll have some great pictures to show for it all!”
What wonderful advice from Olivier and have fun planning your Paris trip!