Happy Friday, y’all! Today’s post has been a LONG time coming… mostly because I was looking for a post just like this one when I was shopping for a certain piece of technology!
I’ve always been a Fitbit fan, but after experiencing some issues with my most recent one a few months ago, I started to look into Apple Watches for activity tracking and for how it could help me stay organized on wedding days! I have heard of other photographers having great luck with using Apple Watches, but I wanted to read specifically what this would look like on a wedding day! I ended up buying a Series 3 watch, and I have to say… I love it so much more than I expected!
Today, I wanted to take a deep dive into how I use my watch to keep myself organized on wedding days and beyond! I so hope you find this helpful!
Before I got an Apple Watch, it didn’t occur to me that you would be able to customize your watch face. Fast forward… I love that you can custom design watch faces and have created two of my own— one that I use for daily life/fitness work & another that I reserve for wedding days! I have them color-coded, so I always know what I’m looking at! I love that you can easily swipe between faces right from your wrist too!
For Apple Watch users, my favorite face is the Modular face because it has the option to show a preview of what’s coming up on your calendar and has easy face access to my favorite apps! See below for what I use on the regular:
Daily Apps: Dark Sky, Calendar, Activity Rings, Workout & Messages
Wedding Apps: Reminders, Calendar, Dark Sky, Messages, Sunrise/Sunset
You’ll see the ways I customize my watch faces here! On the left, you’ll see my pink/daily watch face and my blue/wedding day work face. On the right, you can see the full breakdown of the apps that I use on my wedding day/work face. The middle is how everything looks on my wrist. I love having everything, just a glance or a tap away!
Before a wedding day, I ask couples if there are any specific details that they would like me to pay special attention to. They typically loop me into the details they want me to pay special attention to in their questionnaires or pre-wedding emails. If there IS anything that they want me to focus on (Example from a recent wedding: A bride’s father made their guest bench and other reception details!), I create a list for them in the “Reminders” app on my phone and add the specific photos to the list. As I work through the day, I’m able to check items off of this list, right from my wrist. I love that I always have confirmation at the end of the night that I captured these smaller details for my couples!
Please note: I still use good old-fashioned paper and pen to track family portraits!
Before a wedding day, I manually input a couple’s timeline into my calendar. Yes, this is pretty tedious, but it is SO worth it. Once I have a timeline finalized, I go in and add each event to my calendar with start/end times. Again, tedious, but it is so nice to have a little buzz on your wrist 10 minutes before something is set to happen, and I love that I can confirm start times throughout the day without pulling out my phone or paper timeline. I use Google calendar to manage my personal and professional life, and I also use Google to manage my day-of timelines. Becuse there isn’t a Google calendar watch widget, I’ve linked Google with my Apple calendar. It may be an extra step, but what can I say? I like having everything in one place! Once it is in my Google calendar, it typically will get pushed right over to my iPhone Calendar app. If it doesn’t, a quick tap on the Calendar app from my phone usually does the trick to get everything synced up!
I wanted to show you how everything looks on the input end AND when it is on my wrist. I know that center portion looks like A LOT, but I only see one line at a time on my watch! Before every wedding day, I plug the timeline into my Google Calendar. This is what I use to manage everything in my life, so even though there isn’t a Google calendar watch widget, I enter everything into Google which has been set up to sync with my Apple Calendar app. Once my Google Calendar syncs with Apple, it pops up in the very center of my watch! On the left, you’ll see what I see on my wrist throughout a wedding day. On the right, you’ll see what I see when I tap on the calendar app. If I have any specific timeline notes, I can see those here.
I love being able to see the weather and sunset times at a glance! Sunrise/sunset is so helpful for those wedding days where you are quickly losing light. I sound like a broken record, but it is so helpful to be able to quickly glance down at your wrist for the exact piece of information you were looking for!
For weather, I use Dark Sky! While the Apple Watch version may be a little slower to load, I can see basically everything I need to make a decision (hourly forecasts, upcoming changes, precipitation levels, etc.). Again, so nice to have this all on my wrist, as I don’t love pulling my phone out in front of wedding parties or guests.
This is a little sneak preview of what I see on my wrist when I tap the weather icon! I use the Dark Sky app widget. It is my FAVORITE weather app, and I love having it right on my wrist when the weather may be quickly changing!
With the exception of calls and rideshare notifications, I have all of my push notifications turned off on my phone. Yes, this includes texts too! I used to turn text notifications back on when I was working a wedding, but I’ve stopped doing that because I just didn’t love the distraction from group texts or personal texts that could wait until I was done with work. Now, I keep the text icon on my watch screen with push notifications turned off. I’ll see a little number on the icon when I do have messages and can preview/read the text messages without pulling out my phone. It is so nice to be able to quickly look down at my wrist to see if my second shooter has texted me for something they may need! I love that I can quickly reply with talk to text too, just in case my hands are full and I need to give my second photographer an update.
This one isn’t a wedding day necessity, but it’s fun! It must be the Fitbit lover in me… I love counting how many steps I took during a wedding! At the end of the year, I also love to add up how many steps I did total! Not sure why… it makes me happy though! I love the activity tracking component of my watch, and I’m always surprised to see how active I am on wedding days! During the week, I also love using my watch to track workouts, walks & other fitness stats.
How do YOU use your Apple Watch on a wedding day?! I would love to know in the comments!
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