OK, I'm not saying my processional photos are the best in the world by any means, but I've done enough of them now to know a few things and I thought I'd write some down for prospective clients ( even if you don't book me for your wedding photography they may come in useful! ).
Here are my tips...
1.Hire a professional photographer! If your ceremony is outside, in lovely light and you like seeing everything in the background pin sharp ( including that car park in the distance ), then your cousin's iphone or point and shoot *might* cut it. And yes, I know the latest iPhone can do shallow depth of field, but that is software only and they are only showing you best case scenarios. It won't work for the majority of weddings. You need someone with a camera that can handle dark churches without using a flash that really knows how to shoot moving subjects where there are a lot of distractions for your camera's autofocus. You may think, "my cousin Bob who is coming to the wedding has a big camera, I'll ask him to do it!" Well...having a DSLR doesn't mean it's a good enough camera for this sort of work, an entry level DSLR with a kit lens won't get you the shots you see from a pro photographers gear. And if your cousin Bob has never shot a wedding before, they may not know which settings to use to best capture that sort of moment.
2.Find out where the vicar/priest or whoever is officiating is going to be as you enter the venue. Or get your photographer to ask them. Will they be walking in front of you down the aisle? If so, maybe slow down a bit to give your photographer a chance to get a shot of you without the vicar front and centre
3.Take your time. It's not a sprint. If you amble down the aisle you give your photographer a much better chance of capturing what is one of the most important moments of the day. This is especially true in small venues. This is something you will hopefully only be doing once in your life, so take your time and make the most of it. Which leads onto the next point...
4.Try and really enjoy this moment and smile, you will look great and your photos will look great. The frightened rabbit look never looks great. And if you do take your time, you are less likely to trip up and make it onto a youtube video.
5.Go wireless. Ask whoever is officiating to ban all mobiles/ipads during the ceremony. You don't want a photo of you walking up or down the aisle with an ipad covering your face. This is assuming, of course, that you went along with point 1. If you didn't, then good luck with those grainy out of focus phone pics:)