It’s important to check with the bride as to what time she would like you to arrive in the morning to take photos of the bridal preparation. Some brides will only want photos of them after they’ve had their hair and make-up done, while others may want you to document the whole process.
Either way, ensure that you give yourself plenty of time to take photos; as a rule of thumb, arriving two hours before she’s about to leave for the ceremony should be enough time to grab enough pictures. Bagging the shots you need is of course a priority, though it’s also important that you don’t interfere or get in the way too much while the bride and bridesmaids are getting ready, as this could delay them and cause unnecessary distress. Besides, some of the best shots you can capture at this point of the day are fly-on-the-wall-style shots that simply require you to stand back and capture the moments as they occur, which means that you can keep distractions to a minimum.
If the groom is getting ready at the same location as the bride, make sure you allow some time to take some shots of him and his groomsmen getting ready. If the groom is at a different location, you’ll need to factor in travelling time as well, or alternatively you could always look to hire a second photographer to take shots of the groom while you focus on the bridal prep.
Just like the shots of the bride, be sure to take plenty of photos of the groom interacting with his groomsmen as they get ready. Also, remember to take detail shots of accessories the groom might have, such as a pocket watch.