Formal family photos
Planning your day,  Wedding photography

How to plan your formal wedding photos

You’ve just tied the knot, walked out from your ceremony through a flurry of confetti and now you are ready for the formal photos of your family and friends. With a little planning, this is a fun time to get together with your family and have some great group pictures and formal family photos.

Formal wedding photos

Before the wedding day, we will ask you for a list of the formal photos that you would like. Here’s an example list:
► Bride, groom, bride’s parents
► Bride, groom, groom’s immediate family
► Bride, groom, groom’s parents
► Bride, groom, both sets of parents
► Bride, groom, both immediate families
► Bride, groom, siblings
► Bride, groom, all grandparents
► Bride and groom with extended families
► Bride, groom, maid of honor, best man
► Bride, groom, flower girl, ring bearer
We always want this list of formal photos ahead of time. Trust us, there will not be time for you to write it on the day, and you will end up forgetting someone important! By having the list early, we can give you an idea of how long it will take for the photos, and we can plan an efficient order to take them in. We start with the bigger groups first and slowly whittle people down. It’s always easiest to take people away from the group, rather than trying to find and add them.

Formal wedding photos

Generally, each group photo will take 3 mins. The list above would take about 30 minutes. You’ll need to factor in more time if you have young children in the photos or less able family and friends who take a little extra time to get into the group. If you are having drinks and canapés it’s also best to wait until the photos are finished before serving these, unless you want them in the photos. Children end up with food round their mouth and the adults spend time trying to find somewhere to put them down that isn’t going to be in the photo!

formal wedding photos

We usually borrow the best man or an usher to call the right people together for each photo, we can then concentrate on lining everybody up. Some times its the Maid of Honour with the loudest voice, in which case we will use her!! We will help get each group in place and then ask everyone to look towards the camera and smile. We’ll take a few pictures of each group, then when we whittle your photos down when can pick the ones where people have their eyes open and are looking the right way. It’s very difficult if other family or friends are trying to take photos at the same time as us. You won’t have everyone in the group looking the same way. We’ll ask the usher to ask everyone to wait until we are finished, then they are welcome to take their own photos.
And don’t forget to factor in some extra time if you want anything more creative, like a heart picture.

Formal wedding photos

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