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Thursday, August 04, 2011

Genius wedding idea: Photos before the ceremony

Would you rather see your groom before the ceremony or wait until you walked down the aisle? This bride and groom managed to take pre-ceremony photos without actually seeing each other: behind a door. Clever! Can you imagine how much their hearts must be racing?!

P.S. The cutest photo of a groom seeing his bride.

(Photo by Gina Leigh, via PBFingers)

126 comments:

JenLynn said...

I'm a bit more traditional, I would rather wait until I walk down the aisle before seeing one another on the big day.

Kate said...

I saw my groom before the aisle! Surprisingly I was so nervous walking up to him to do our first look. I am glad I did it because everything else was a breeze with him by my side!

Michelle Vinson said...

How sweet! We didn't see eachother and the only photo I requested that my photographer get was Scott's face when I first walked down the aisle and not of me. He looks so handsome in the photo and it is now hanging on our wall in the family room :)

Jennifer King said...

: ) Photos like this always make me so happy. I'm planning a wedding right now and spend A LOT of time on wedding blogs. Some of my favorite photos are the first look ones. I've heard from so many people who did first looks who said it was the best decision because it calmed most of the nerves and they didn't lose any of the spark that came when seeing each other down the aisle. I can't wait for ours!

Alicia said...

Lovee this! Julie's blog (PB Fingers) is the best!

Allison said...

oh! this gives me goosebumps! what an amazing shot. i'm not sure if i'd want to spoil the surprise of seeing him (and vice versa) at the altar, but i also love the idea of spending a short time together before the wedding - it would probably help calm my nerves! :)

Fabiana ~ Ciao Newport Beach said...

What a sweet photo! I love it. We choose to wait until I walked down the aisle. It's a breathtaking moment for the bridegroom.

ciao

Wendy said...

Walking down the aisle, it's more romantic. Brilliant photo!

Heather {The Lovely Cupboard} said...

My husband and I did a "first sight" meeting before the ceremony in the chapel. It was so intimate and special...I'll never forget that time. He cried, I cried, and by the time the wedding started we were just excited!

el {what you fancy} said...

I think I'd rather wait... and like in 27 Dresses, my favourite part of a wedding is seeing the groom's face when he first sees his bride coming down the aisle :)
~el

Cara said...

awwwww!
Lilac and Grey

Emily Marie said...

This is so sweet! (And, I agree, a genius wedding idea). I am traditional so I don't think I'd see my fiance before the wedding - but I'd for sure try to pull off a pic like this!

Melissa said...

Breathtaking picture!

Kate said...

this is adorable! such a cute idea!
www.styleisalwaysfashionable.blogspot.com

Collections said...

That's such an adorable idea!

Fashionable Collections

J Leigh said...

I absolutely love this idea! I must get a shot like this for our wedding!

Can I please copy this pic to a blog post on my site??

http://againstautoimmune.blogspot.com/

Sarah Crosby said...

We did the behind the door thing and it was SO fun. We didnt want to see each other before but just being able to hold his hand for a few seconds calmed my nerves.

Joanna Platt said...

This photo warms my heart and also gives me butterflies thinking about what they must be feeling. The nerves, the excitement, pure love and hopefulness. As a newlywed myself, I can only imagine how my heart would be racing in that moment and how much feeling you could exchange in that touch. Thanks for sharing--this makes me send warm, loving thoughts towards my husband.

Erica Christine said...

When I was younger I thought it was really romantic to wait until the ceremony to see each other, but now that I'm engaged and trying to plan the timing of the pictures, ceremony and reception it seems like it'll work out best for everyone to do pictures before the ceremony since we'll be having our ceremony and reception in the same location. Oh, and we just booked our location today, I'm SO excited! It's starting to feel real!!

I also know how much of a blubbering mess I turn into when overcome with emotion, so for the sake of everyone who will be at our ceremony I think it would be better for me to see my future groom before walking down the aisle. ;)

The couple in that photo look so giddy with excitement!

Diana Mieczan said...

Awww..that is such a sweet idea and totally adorable photo. It melts my heart:) Happy Thursday, Joanna

Closet Cravings said...

I've seen that pre-wedding before (though I don't remember where). I wish I had taken photos like this when I got married. So cute. =)
Need it? Want it? Crave it? Satisfy Your Cravings For Celebrity Style and All Things Stylish and Sweet

Stephanie said...

My husband and I were traditional, didn't see each other til the ceremony. And see he couldn't see a picture of my dress, he wouldn't let me see a picture of his tux either, so we were both surprised! I do really like this idea though, that picture is soooo sweet!!

oh.just.jess said...

love this!

we're planning on having our photographer capture our first look before the ceremony. i thought it would be a sweet touch to have that moment just for ourselves ;) (also help me calm my nerves!)

ohjustjess.blogspot.com

Adele said...

My husband and I decided to see each other before the wedding. Our photographer was there out of our sight for the first minute (if that) to capture a little bit of the moment.

I'm so glad we decided to see each other. I'd rather get the nervousness out before walking down the aisle. It was also nice being able to chat and compliment each other on our wedding outfits, since neither of us knew what the other's would look like.

littlebell said...

When we first got engaged, I was certain that I wanted to do photos before the ceremony, in the interest of time. But once I had my dress, I completely changed my mind. I definitely want to wait until the aisle, and since we're outside and I have a looong walk across the yard before going down the aisle, I'm going to make him turn his back.

I think this is the best idea for a wedding photo, though—already sent to my photographer!!

melissa said...

Such a sweet picture!

As a wedding photographer, I do love when the bride+groom do the "first look" before the ceremony (they both meet in spot of their own before we get going with the formal pictures and/or ceremony). There's so much else going on all day, this moment feels like taking a deep breath and exhaling slowly before we get rolling. Sometimes this is the only alone-time the bride+groom have until late in the evening!

Fun fact: in every wedding I've shot, the groom cried (in that sweetest, most sincere way) during the "first look".

Naghmeh said...

oh wow that photo made me all emotional. She looks so cute too and you can see she just wants to pull the groom in!
thanks for sharing :) xx

The Rigolosos said...

I do love this! That first look with my man, just the two of us, was one of the best moments yet.

Daydreamer said...

This is so beautiful. I actually think this idea is more romantic than the traditional waiting for the bride to walk down the aisle. I love this picture!

Joanna Goddard said...

can you imagine the butterflies in your stomach??? i love this photo :)

Orchid Grey said...

My fiance and I are walking each other down the aisle, I would love to do something like this before we see each other for the first time. 17 days and I'm a married girl!

Joanna Goddard said...

we did a first look and i really loved getting to see alex alone (well, with the photographer) before the ceremony and getting to whisper to each other and smooch a little :) i think i would have fainted if i'd had to wait until walking down the aisle, i would have been too nervous! :)

Joanna Goddard said...

orchid grey, soooo soon!!! congratulations!!!

Roxanne said...

We did a "reveal" before the ceremony. It was so much fun to have that little moment. It also allowed me to be more "present" sort of, walking down the aisle, being able to concentrate on all the smiling faces of our loved ones!
And the pictures we have of that moment are amazing.

Beach Coast Style said...

So sweet! I love this!

OperaWife said...

THAT'S ME AND MY HUSBAND in the linked pictures! How random and awesome! That was my FAVORITE moment of our wedding day, and that part of the video continues to make me cry. THANK YOU for linking to that. You just made my day.

Sage Crown Parker said...

what a sweet photo!
i love this photo idea, i recently made the same photo but at villa where the bride is standing on the top floor of the villa and the groom is looking up, link here
http://viweddingphotos.blogspot.com/2011/06/beach-villa-wedding-on-st-john.html

being a wedding photographer i always try to talk people into seeing each other before so i can make more photos of them together:)
xoxo

Zoƫ said...

What a sweet moment--I love this. Thanks for sharing, Joanna!

dreamday said...

i always have to hold back tears at this part of the wedding ceremony. even if the bride and groom have seen each other pre-ceremony it still is a magical moment when their eyes meet... the energy is so intense. pure happiness. so glad you shared this photo(such a unique, fun idea)joanna, adore your blog! and so happy for you orchid grey!!! :)

megan said...

oh, this is so sweet.

401 said...

This is the sweetest thing ever.

Kayla said...

How adorable! I'll have to snag this idea. I'm definitely more tradtional in this case.

Anonymous said...

wow, i love this photo! what a fantastic idea.

paige said...

I definitely do not want us to see each other before we say "I Do." Along with being suprised about the sex of your baby...it's one of those great times in life where I think the torture of waiting actually pays off in a big, big way! I'm getting butterflies just thinking about it :)

Isabella Kiss said...

that photo is amazing. what a great idea. I am definitelty all for waiting until the walk down the aisle, but this is a really cute idea that captures the couple's anticipation very well.

inspirationfiles said...

Aw, what a lovely photo! My husband and I saw each other before the ceremony (and I felt much calmer that way), but I love this mix of modern and traditional. Also, I LOVE Julie's blog!

Holly said...

My hubs and I decided we needed to see each other before. It was the only moment we had alone together (but with the photog) all day! Our photographer got my favorite shots of the day at that moment becausee it was just us, and our faces show the raw emotions we felt. It was a beautiful moment for us!

MEGGY said...

This made me smile really big. Such a beautiful couple soon to embark on the journey of marriage ;)

Rosalynn of Chic Boutique Tour said...

That is so clever and cute! If you like weddings you may want to check out our video cover the release of the latest issue of Unveiled Magazine at StudioWed.

http://youtu.be/257h6-X77sM

Eliza Jane said...

I love this photo! I would totally wait until I was walking down the isle for us to see each other.

the lil bee said...

WE did this EXACT photo at our wedding! And then I handed Paul a letter I'd written him from the other side of the door, and there's a picture of him reading it and smiling. One of my favorite photos of ours, ever.

Ashley said...

What a cute idea. I like that a lot.

I was thinking that it would be nice to meet before the ceremony for a few reasons... Nerves aren't as high when your walking down the aisle, you get a lot of couple pictures without making guest wait after the ceremony to start the reception, and no running eyes, noses, etc from crying during the ceremony. =)

american girl said...

this photo is absolutely beautiful. personally, I can't decide if I prefer a first look session to see the groom, or if I'd rather wait until I'm walking down the aisle.

but seeing as I'm not anywhere close to getting married, it's not really a pressing issue at the moment. :]

Maura said...

Oh, I love Julie from PBFingers. Her blog is AWESOME. Great photo.

kelsey said...

Hi Joanna,
I wasn't so sure about the whole 'before-the-ceremony' thing (and thought, "no way!" for my own wedding) but my little brother caught an incredible moment with one of his clients. here: http://stonecrandall.com/#1645313/Rachael-Mike-wedding (it's the little set of 4 photos). I love the look of anticipation on the groom's face!

cheers!
Kelsey

Anonymous said...

A good friend of mine did this on her wedding day. Her picture was pricless. I have to show you, so sweet...

margaret said...

I would truly encourage every bride and groom to consider having pictures done before the ceremony. I worked for a wedding photographer for 18 years, he insisted on doing formal photos before the ceremony.
Over and over again I heard brides say it was the best part of the day....and he got those great surprise shots!

Kaira said...

Very Sweet. My husband and I decided to eliminate stress and take the photos beforehand which I think worked out wonderfully. But this photo is absolutely precious!

wildchild said...

so sweet :) i wanna wait till i'm walking down the aisle, but a photo like this is a great idea!

Sara Szatmary said...

This door photo makes my heart melt. I definitely don't want to see my groom before; however, I think first look photos are super cute and a great idea.

Mama in the City said...

I think it is old fashion to make a big deal about seeing the bride before walking down the aisle. In fact, I think the first meeting is equally as special before or waiting. A photographer can still capture the amazement and emotions aisle or no aisle.

Karaugh said...

My friends Laura and Joel did this right before their wedding ceremony two years ago. We had just popped a bottle of champagne when he came to hold her hand and tell her how excited he was. It was so sweet.

Combined with the bubbles and the excitement of the moment, I think we ALL felt butterflies. Funny how you feel those flutters when even your being knows it's true love.

Kelly said...

I did this at my wedding and I loved it! To me it felt much more private and special to see each other BEFORE the ceremony, with only the photographer there.

Angela Hemming said...

We chose to walk down the "aisle" together, and took all our portraits before the ceremony. That way, our guests didn't have to wait hours between the ceremony and the reception while we got photos done. After the ceremony, it was straight into the party. It was great!

http://vimeo.com/16668897

Chelsea said...

I am just so torn about this. I looked at your "first look" photos and they make me want to do it. They are so gorgeous and it looks so special. I just feel that tradition of walking down the aisle for the first look tugging at me.

Kacie @ A Collection of Passions said...

I'm a photographer and "First Look" photos are a pretty big trend right now and some of my very favorite photos to shoot.

Kacie
http://www.acollectionofpassions.blogspot.com/

Grace Wright said...

I know of a couple who had a "first look" except that they were wearing blindfolds (so it wasn't really a " first look" at all, I guess). It was very sweet. That way, they got to talk and have that moment before but still have the magical walking down the aisle surprise. Plus, the two of them in blindfolds made for some adorable pictures :).

robynbeatrix said...

Aw, my husband and I have the same photo! the moment our hands touched we both started crying. It made the moment we saw eachother as I was walking down the aisle that much more special.

Jessie said...

I love this idea. I never had a 'real' wedding and kind of wish I could throw one to do these kinds of things. :)

Stephanie said...

What a great moment captured! So sweet.

SheSaidGSaid said...

I am all about my future grooms "look." When I walk down the aisle I want to see the emotions flood his face and get the awe factor. I think this picture is brilliant. Just the touching of hands before the big ceremony could provide the connection you need but still let the surprise come later.

Libby said...

i am getting married next August and I definitely want to have a first look with my fiance. i think it will be a good hour of time alone that we can spend together before the madness begins! my photographer just posted a super sweet first glance picture between a bride and groom and it gave me such goosebumps! i love seeing emotion in a guy!

Libby on the Label

Sarah said...

omg i LOVE this. absolutely genius and now i'm all weepy hahah

Sara B said...

I saw this photo from PB Fingers the other day! I love her! And this picture makes my heart melt, it gives me butterflies just looking at it. I think I will wait till he walks down the aisle, though I get why people do first looks as well.

Abby Noel said...

Such a sweet idea! There's definitely a lot of excitement and emotion to be captured before actually seeing each other.

Kirsten @ Triple Max Tons said...

My husband and I waited to see each other, and it is probably one of the more anxious/exciting times of the day! I will never forget how I felt when I saw John standing up at the altar...I wouldn't trade that for a pre-photo sesh ever.

PS I am hosting a Sally Hershberger "Beachy Waves" giveaway/tutorial ...you should check it out!

mary shouvlin said...

this photo is the sweetest! love it

Leslie said...

My husband and I did "first look" photos before our wedding ceremony. I wasn't sure about it, but our photographers did an amazing job at creating this really intimate moment where I walked up to my soon-to-be-husband in a giant field of wildflowers. His back was to me as I walked out to meet him, so when he finally turned around, he was very surprised. It was really special for the two of us to have that moment before sharing our ceremony with friends and family. I still smile when thinking about it!

Glenda said...

I love this idea and love the picture!

Taylor {The Proposal Enthusiast} said...

I definitely don't want to see the groom before I walk down the aisle. I know I could get some really good pictures of us but I'm just too traditional. I have loved all the pictures like this I have been seeing around on Pinterest. This I will definitely do!

thinkpriddy said...

so sweet! i dream of this :)

ohnomyboots said...

Wow- anyone else notice just how last year (on the adorable, crying groom post) Joanna's post received 6 comments and now, at 3.5 hours in, we're at 80? Cup of Jo has blown up!!!

~Laura said...

That photo is so cute!!
I saw my hubby before the ceremony to take pictures. We did a nice reveal and was so glad we did. This way we were able to take it all in.

Ashlee Dearie said...

I'm absolutely in love with this shot! It's so sweet! I think I'd rather wait to see the groom. To me, I'd feel like it's add just another level excitment to an already special day! <3

Mollie D said...

We had planned on seeing eachother but when the time came, he couldn't do it! Every picture I'm just slightly behind him- he basically only saw my silhouette- it was so cute and the pictures turned out great! I hated that he was going to see me, but we didn't have time for pics later so I was so happy. I saw him, but he didn't see me!

Brigette Olmos-Arreola said...

such a sweet idea!


flemingfiles.blogspot.com

Chessa! said...

this is a great idea. we opted to see each other:)

Filip Demuinck said...

Top picture, very special.

Greetings,
Filip

Stephanie said...

Oh my gosh what a cute idea! My husband and I didn't see each other before the ceremony but this definitely would have been something we'd do if we would have thought about it!!

Ashley said...

My husband and I did our photos before the ceremony and I recommend doing this to all the brides I talk to!

A lot of people who see our photos have to have that concept explained {they look at them and say "Well why are you BEHIND him?"} But once explained they can see the anticipation in his face. I love them!

My photographer was nice enough to put some of the photos up on her blog here:
http://genevievenislyblog.com/2011/06/13/wedding-at-the-joseph-saxton-gallery-of-photography-and-the-canton-club-at-the-joseph-saxton-gallery-of-photography-and-the-canton-club/

P.S. My word verification captcha thing is "precheez" I think that's the term for what you do right before taking a photo, right?

sherri lynn said...

I've seen this done before a few times. I also recently saw this cute picture of a bride & groom before their wedding:

http://timgosnell.com/2011/weddings/amanda-jacob-preview/

Holding hands next to each but with their eyes closed - priceless!

fleur_delicious said...

aw, how sweet! Well, we went to the courthouse, so there goes the surprise! I loved our day, though: my husband came home around noon, we walked to a cafe and picked up espresso and blts for lunch, then got dressed up in the bathroom together and off we went!

Caitlin said...

My husband and I saw each other before the ceremony and I am so thankful we made that decision. I know some people are a bit more traditional, but I was all nerves the morning of and seeing him and spending the hour before the ceremony together made everything better. I worried that the walk down the aisle would be less emotional, but the photos of us seeing each other at the ceremony show how moving it still was...Moving but with less mnerves=awesome. I still remember exactly what it felt like as I approached him on the porch for that first look and his reaction was so wonderful and sweet. I love this photo!

Meagen said...

My dearest lifelong friend married in May and she and her groom didn't want to see each other before the wedding either.... they did the same thing! We were all crying at the sweet sentiment of the scene :) I am in love with this idea!!

Here's the link to the photographer's blog (AWESOME photographer!!)... scroll down a little bit to see the 'doorway photos'.

http://jennieandrewsphotography.squarespace.com/journal/2011/7/13/jenna-and-bradley.html

Ally said...

Adorable. Sweet as pie!
http://allykayler.blogspot.com

claire-elisa said...

Oh my, this nearly made me cry. Photos are amazing things, so much emotion, love, in this pic, especially his face, how beautiful. What a lovely image for me to start the day.

Gina Leigh said...

Julie and Ryan were the sweetest couple you can possibly imagine! This moment was incredibly special. I'm so happy to see it on A Cup of Jo!

XOXO
Gina Leigh

naomi: said...

This is such a fantastic idea, I will probably try it when my big day comes :)

Charity said...

oh wow that's beautiful...i think that's a fantastic idea!
http://incurablelibertine.tumblr.com/

Jw said...

Darling, what a cute idea. :)

Louise said...

Calmed us both right down to see one another for a short visit before the ceremony. We were still thrilled every step of the way, but didn't have to share with everyone those first looks in the eyes.
And the photo you sent made ME cry!

p S h A o R t A o said...

Whenever I do get married, I would probably do a first look during the shoot. But I think this kind of stuff is stunning. I just spent the last ten or so minutes looking for this album by this AMAZING photographer. You can find her (Leslee Mitchell) on facebook.

Here is one of the most amazing photos before this couple got married without even seeing each other. http://bit.ly/ps1vDU

Here is is a photo of the groom's face when he saw her for the first time. He actually had his head up and away from her until she got closer. They were together for ten years!! http://bit.ly/pFSVRv

Isn't that soooo romantic!?!

Love Camie said...

I am absolutely keeping this idea for my own wedding! The cutest thing...ever.


Love,
Camie

http://lovecamie.blogspot.com/

Heels and Sunkissed Curls said...

Aww! I love this! I would love to come up with other ways to take pre-wedding pics without seeing each other, so fun :)

Chelsea
http://www.heelsandsunkissedcurls.com/

Amy said...

my husband and i chose to share that first moment we saw each other privately (with the photographer tucked a silent distance from us to document it). this is the very first picture immediately after the photographer told my husband to open his eyes: http://actualizingamy.blogspot.com/2010/08/speaking-of-wedded-bliss.html

taking them beforehand took a lot of pressure off the walking down the aisle part, allowed for some really genuine, giddy and intimate smiles in our photos, and helped lessen the photo taking time between the ceremony and reception.

we loved it and i always recommend it to my engaged friends.

Somewhere In Between said...

I really have no idea what I would I would pick for my wedding day. I love the idea of not seeing each other before and taking a picture like above. The idea of seeing my man before holds it own appeal too. I suppose it will be a choice between us.

Math Activities said...

Nice picture!!!

Anonymous said...

I got married 3 weeks ago and we waited to see each other (that's common in the UK, where I'm from) but not in my husband's culture so all his family thought it was a bit odd!

It was GREAT! I was so excited beforehand but not nervous. When I saw him, I practically ran up to him. He was - surprisingly - very emotional & later said he was glad he waited to see me. When he saw me he said I was beautiful and kissed me and he got told off hehe :) Before we were officially pronounced man and wife he tried to kiss me again but he was told he had to be patient :)

Sarah said...

Sorry this comment is delayed. Just saw this! My husband and I did this on our wedding day. We were between a door like this, but we didn't even hold hands, we only said "I love you." The pictures of that moment are some of my favorite from the day!

clarity enhanced diamonds said...

Love your photos. They are really very elegant and well placed.

Cassy said...

What a great idea!! I LOVE this photo. So clever. Thanks for sharing.

xo
www.suite4e.com

Sara said...

Oh, I love this SO much! Just one more thing I want to add to my future wedding wish list.

toridawn said...

We did all our photos before the ceremony...we'd just been to a wedding where the bride and groom took TWO HOURS to show up to the reception...and there was no food or even wine or cocktails served until they got there! (I think I drank a gallon of water...)

So that the first time my husband saw me in my wedding gown was when I walked down the aisle, we coordinated a private little moment before pictures in the church...we asked everyone to leave, he stood at the front and I walked down the aisle. We were able to have a private moment, say a prayer and relish the peaceful feel of the moment.

Then we took pictures and everything else was "go, go, go!" all day.

Best decision we made for the logistics of the day, but also for the moment we were able to share before the madness of the event!

c. marie said...

I was honored to be the photographer for my best friend's wedding, and she also had this brilliant idea (although, as you can see, she got a bit nervous!):
http://www.flickr.com/photos/cmsleaps/5656094250/in/set-72157626579480498

Amanda Mae said...

I just recently took a photo like this at a wedding I shot a couple months ago.

However, I will ABSOLUTELY see my husband before I walk down the aisle. I'm pretty non-traditional, but honestly, I just don't see the appeal of wedding. I think it would make me less nervous, and complicate things less to just see him earlier in the day.

Wedding Favors said...

nice pics !!! Bride is looking so beautiful, She has killer smile :)

ateqah said...

here is another one i just stumbled upon: http://brandonwerth.com/blog/?p=740

Unknown said...

Here's another: http://pinterest.com/pin/87272179/

buildingatlantis said...

I would wait to see the groom until the ceremony not because of any wedding day superstitions, but just to delay the joy of seeing each other until we're both dolled up and anticipating the ceremony. I LOVE the idea of this shoot (both as a potential brideand a photographer.) What a way to make a connection and have some support during the whole day and still preserve the surprise of seeing each other until the big moment. Awesome!

buildingatlantis.wordpress.com

Jess said...

this picture is sooo sweet! I love his idea. Thanks for sharing.

www.laceandfadedjeans.com

Wedding Venues Adelaide Hills said...

I love the idea! Really very clever! That just looks so sweet. I would want to see my groom before walking down the aisle, I would love to see him close straight to my eyes sincerely with all the love. While my lips are silently smiling uttering the words in my head "we're really getting married". Ah! How sweet!:)

Guljar said...

Happy anniversary.I love your Anniversary Gifts very much.Thanks again for nice article.

peter said...

even im waiting for this right moment in my life.. you are so lucky:)
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Altax said...

So sweet!!! Great idea...

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Whole Sale Toner said...

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online florist said...

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