In today’s age of technology, cell phones are equipped with cameras that can snap a picture and post it online within seconds. Everyone has them and they have become a part of our everyday lives. But like everything in life, there should be balance. There are times when snapping a quick photo or taking a video is great; however, there are also times when keeping our cell phones in our pocket is also a great idea.

One of the most popular trends in the wedding photography industry is having an “unplugged” wedding. Couples who choose to have an unplugged wedding want their closest friends and family to enjoy their special day without being tethered to their cell phones. Steven Cotton Photography is a Bay Area based wedding photography studio and encourages wedding guests to consider the following three tips on cell phones at weddings.

Lisa & Khang’s Wedding – September 7th, 2019 – Guglielmo Winery, Morgan Hill, CA

Keeping Your Cell Phone in Your Pocket Allows You to Be “Present” And Enjoy The Day

One of the most important cases for keeping your cell phone in your pocket at weddings is that it allows you to be fully present. If you have ever been to a restaurant – it is common to see many groups of patrons enjoying their dinner but constantly checking their phones. While there may be important conversations to be had on your cell phone, the most important one is sitting right across from you. Being fully present during dinner at a restaurant or at a wedding shows that you value the moment you are in more than what can be posted to social media or anything that is happening elsewhere.

Wedding Couples Have Paid Good Money for Their Wedding Photographer

Another thing to consider is that the wedding couple has invested good money in Photographers that are there to capture the wedding. While you may have the urge to snap a bunch of pictures to share on social media, chances are that these images will not make it in the couple’s wedding album! In some cases, having your cell phone out may even get in the way of the Wedding Photographer’s shot and can also take away from the time that the couple has reserved for their wedding portraits. If the wedding couple is on a tight schedule or running behind, just a few minutes here-and-there to take pictures with guests can limit the time that they have for their posed portraits.

A great way to think of this is by considering the other wedding vendors. For example, if the wedding couple hired a catering company, it may not be appropriate to pack your own dinner and eat this at your table. It would also be inappropriate to bring your own portable music player or supply your table with your own floral arrangement if the wedding couple has hired a DJ and Florist. The same goes for the Wedding Photographers.

Don’t Worry, You Can Still Get Pictures with The Wedding Couple

Finally, wedding guests should also consider that there will be a few opportunities to get your picture taken with the wedding couple. If you are a part of the wedding couple’s immediate family, they will have several groupings of posed family portraits that they have pre-arranged with the Wedding Photographer. These groups typically include the couple’s close friends, bridal party, and family members.

At most weddings, the couple may have also set aside time to make table visits. This is a brief opportunity for the couple to come to each table to thank you for coming and to take a quick photo by the Wedding Photographer. If you happen to miss any of these opportunities, I recommend asking the Wedding Photographer if they mind taking a picture of you with the wedding couple. Most Wedding Photographers love doing these types of images. And a great time to request them is when there is a gap in the wedding timeline – like open dancing.

If you are planning on attending an upcoming wedding, I encourage you to consider being “unplugged.” It will allow you to be fully present, you will not interfere with the Wedding Photographers, and you will still have opportunities to take pictures with the wedding couple.