No wedding would be complete without a top-notch wedding photographer – the person responsible for making your special day last forever.
Our Wedding Photography Awards are here to celebrate just that. Take a look at this year’s selection of the most special wedding photos across 12 exciting categories, captured by our incredible wedding photographers, and handpicked by our panel of industry experts. We received 340 submissions in total – that’s 900 individual photos across all the categories. So a huge congratulations to all those photographers who have been shortlisted!
Go through the list and discover the story behind each photo and why we chose them.
And if any catch your eye, why not reach out to them on their Bridebook profiles to snap them up for your own wedding? After all, there’s no denying that the best wedding inspiration can come from dreamy photos of fellow brides and grooms who have already tied the knot.
Kicking off with the best first look photos. Seeing the bride in her wedding dress for the first time is always an emotional moment for all those involved, and one that’s so special to capture. It’s all about the emotions and reactions, from anticipation to joy to pride to love. We were blown away by the amazing submissions we received – here are our favourites.
The story behind this photo: “Becca and her bridesmaids were getting ready at the magnificent Royal College of Physicians in Edinburgh. Her mum helped her into her dress and I thought of arranging the first look with her bridesmaids – the looks on their faces, it was worth it!”
Why we chose this photo as our overall winner: For us, this photo perfectly captures everything a first look is meant to be. It is all about the beauty and magic of the big reveal, and the emotions and reactions of those in the room when the bride makes her entrance. We adore the line-up of emotions on each of the bridesmaid’s faces, from shock to delight to pride to awe. The composition adds to the effect, with the bride posing in the foreground with her arms spread out and her back to the camera, while the bridesmaids stand together side by side, their hands clasped in front of them. The luminous, golden lighting creates a warm and light-hearted atmosphere, which wonderfully captures the joy of those in the room. It is a photo which is both artful and natural, combining posed perfection with heart-warming humanity.
Read on for our list of honourable mentions, whose submissions simply blew us away!
The story behind this photo: “This photo is from the wedding of Poppy and Josh, who got married at Beaconside House in North Devon in 2021. The gorgeous bride, Poppy, bought her stunning dress from Champagne and Charlotte Bridal and had been waiting until the day to show to her adoring bridal party who raised the roof for the moment!”
Why we shortlisted this photo: The expressions of joy on each of the bridesmaids’ faces are beautiful to see. We particularly love the gesture of the little girl covering her face, while the other children watch to see what her reaction will be.
The story behind this photo: “This was the first time the bridesmaids had seen the bride in her dress. They had no idea what style of dress she was going for and took bets on what she would have gone for. Needless to say none of them guessed right! They are a very close knit group of friends and definitely #bridetribe goals!”
Why we shortlisted this photo: We love the energy and vibrancy in this photo – it is super fun, colourful, vibrant and full of joyful laughter. The reactions of the four bridesmaids are priceless, and really show the story of their attempts at guessing the style of their friend’s dress.
Photo © Jessica Hayman Photography | See their Bridebook profile
The story behind this photo: “This dad was making light of the day (joking all morning), until he saw his daughter. He couldn’t stop sobbing, making us all cry (yes, the photographer too!).”
Why we shortlisted this photo: The choice to shoot in greyscale adds to the intensity of the scene and gives weight to the composition. It perfectly captures that breathtaking moment when the dad sees his daughter before the wedding ceremony and is overcome with emotion.
The story behind this photo: “When the bride’s dad saw his daughter for the first time on her wedding day he was so overcome that emotion just took over. We love the look between mum and daughter while dad is struggling to hold it together.”
Why we shortlisted this photo: The monochrome tones here perfectly capture the intensity and drama of this emotional moment. We love to see the bride’s visible gasp as she shares a look with her mum, who is herself overcome with emotion as she holds her husband close.
The story behind this photo: “We always love an emotional dad! I love how the bride squad really add to the energy and emotion in this shot.”
Why we shortlisted this photo: The composition here, with the bride standing in the foreground to the side, while the dad and bridesmaids stand facing her, is very artful, and adds to the emotionality of the photo. We love to see the varying expressions on each of their faces – from the intensity of the dad’s tearful pride, to the bridesmaids’ smiles of delight.
The story behind this photo: “I met Jane and Tom when they agreed to do their engagement session in the only snow storm we’ve had in 2 years! So their wedding day was going to be fun. Well it was fun but also full of happy tears, starting with this wonderful moment between Jane and her dad at the first look. She looked amazing and that veil was incredible!”
Why we shortlisted this photo: This photo captures such a special moment. The dad’s expression of admiration and love for his daughter is beautiful, while the gesture of wiping the happy tears from his face adds to the emotionality of the composition.
The story behind this photo: “Dad and Rebecca were both so nervous to see each other for the first look just before the ceremony and the emotions showed the incredible bond they hold – even the venue staff shed tears over the beautiful father and daughter moment they shared.”
Why we shortlisted this photo: We love how this photo captures the dad’s outpouring of emotion at such a climactic moment. Having him in focus in the centre, with her in the foreground but out of focus, adds to the effect, and puts all the attention on his reaction.
The story behind this photo: “Jill’s reaction when seeing Kunal for the first time in church was absolutely priceless!”
Why we shortlisted this photo: We love this unique interpretation of a first look. With the groom in the foreground but out of focus, the attention is on the bride’s reaction of excitement as her husband to be turns around to meet her eyes – a truly magical moment.
The story behind this photo: “I had just spotted the shoes coming down the stairs, and it seemed to tell the story of that moment”.
Why we shortlisted this photo: This is an artful, striking composition, that uniquely captures the moment just before the first look. It is the anticipation of the big reveal that really shines in this photo, with the bride’s family waiting downstairs as the bride takes her last steps towards them.
The story behind this photo: “The groom was so excited to see his bride walk down the aisle. I love his expression.”
Why we shortlisted this photo: We love the groom’s expression too! We also love to see how her eyes meet his, while the father of the bride looks down at his daughter with a smile.
The story behind this photo: “I love capturing these moments and the emotion from the bridesmaids was so touching. A beautiful moment.”
Why we shortlisted this photo: This is a classic, emotional first look moment. Capturing the bride’s reaction through her reflection in the mirror adds a lovely layer of extra depth.
There you have our favourite first look photos of 2022! If you loved our line-up, stay tuned for the next in the series: the best first dance photos, captured straight from the dancefloor!