Best time of Day to Plan Your Elopement




Elopements || What is the Best Time of Day for Our Ceremony?

The easiest answer is, hire the right photographer and it doesn’t matter what time of day you plan your elopement in Omaha. However, I recognize that you might be more concerned with the actual day and it’s events rather than just the memories of it. Which is why I have put together this list to help midwestern couples decide on the best time of day to plan for their elopement.

Elopements are becoming more and more popular and with good reason. Weddings are expensive and exhausting. Couples are foregoing the more traditional routes for something more intimate and romantic. It used to be that telling people you were going to elope gathered a negative vision income and grandma’s head of some irresponsible couple running off to Vegas. Now, when I say elopements you may think of couples committing to each other on beautiful beaches and mountains. It may even conjure up images of honeymoons and weddings combining for one epic, adventurous, vacation.

Elopements are my favorite stories to tell, they are passionate and timeless. So when you are planning an elopement, how do you decide on what time of day is best? What kind of lighting is going to tell your story the way you deserve it to be told?


Different Times of Day and the Lighting it Provides


Types of Light:

Morning Light 

(we are talking sunrise here) Beautiful soft yellow-gold light. Shadows will be lessened and you get the added bonus of nature working magic around you. Woodland creatures and other types of animals tend to be more active in the morning so you might have a horse or deer that likes to crash elopements. Fog on the water is also a magical morning thing that I have been lucky enough to capture a few times. If you are into that other worldly sensation then I highly suggest getting your but up before the sun and get ready for sunrise nuptials. Invigorating elopement!

Evening Light 

(Just before sunset) Lush orange/gold, it flecks everything at this time of day. You will have more open shade, just like in the morning. This means softer shadows here too. This time of day is very energizing to me. It breaths life into each moment, each story. Make sure you know what time sun will set and have your ceremony staged and ready to go about 45-60 minutes before. Things get really magical about 20-30 minutes before the sun dips below the horizon. You will be looking at each other with golden halos surrounding you, seeing your bride or groom with a godly glow. This type of light is perfect on a hill or in a forest here in Omaha for your elopement.

Harsh lighting 

This is everything in between. More contrast, deeper shadows, brighter saturation. If you are planning a midday elopement keep in mind the location your getting married in. I’ve photographed plenty of midday weddings under the hot Texas summer sun and it’s NO FUN! Your groom is stuck in a layered suit and sweating by the buckets. Then sun can be like daggers in your eyes as well.



Factors to Consider



A major decision factor for elopements. Have you already fallen in love with the photographer that you will be using? Take a good look at their portfolio, do they have a style that encompasses all types of lighting situations or do they really only shine in one type of light? Pay close attention, some photographers can do it all, some can only do one thing. If you are set on this particular photographer you may already have your answer if you just ask them what they prefer. I personally think there is something special about elopements in the early AM but I still love to photograph them any time of day.


Elopements that take place on the beach are better off during a time of day when the sun isn’t so harsh because the sand and water can magnify the light. Maybe you can see the sun rise or set behind a particular mountain that you are eloping near, if it’s important to see that sunrise/set then you have your answer. Your chosen venue may also have restrictions as to when you are allowed to be there. So, when it comes to your elopement, ask all of the questions!

Time of Year:

If you are getting married in the snow, perhaps its best to wait for softer lighting. Snow acts like a giant reflector bouncing up light from all angles. If you are getting married in the Fall or Spring, midday might be a bit warmer and more more comfortable.


Did you elope? Do you have any advice for anyone thinking about elopements? Post it in the comments below!

If you would like Velvet Sage Photography to tell your story please contact me and let’s chat!

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