You have waited months, maybe even years for your big day to finally be here. And now it is here!! You have had your first look, your bridal party pictures, you are feeling good, but now…the family pictures on your wedding day. Who do you get pictures with? In what order do I do them? Where is Uncle George? Wait do we have everyone? Family pictures tend to be the most stressful part of the wedding day, but I promise you, there is an easier way! Just follow these tips!
I work together closely with my couples to compile a list of who they want included in their family portraits. Once we make the list, I create groups of who will be included. I always start big and work my way down to individuals. This way once people finish, they can go and enjoy the rest of the day. This makes sure that no one is missing! My second photographer, or someone else, keeps track of who is getting their pictures taken and who is on deck, that it goes by quick and painless. A family member should be close by to help find Uncle George or whoever is needed next. That way the bride and groom don’t have to go looking and making sure that everyone is there!
Bride and Groom with parents
Bride and Groom with immediate family
Bride and Groom with grandparents
Bride and Groom with siblings
Bride and Groom with aunts/uncles with family
Bride and Groom with Officiant
After creating the list of who you want included in your family pictures, make sure you talk over any divorces, family members who have passed, or if there are any family members that shouldn’t be next to each other. I understand if your parents are divorced and don’t want to be included in the same picture. Or what do you do if dad has remarried but mom hasn’t. Don’t worry, I have you covered. Just talk through all of this with your wedding photographer, that way we know what to all include. Make sure to tell us if Uncle George and Aunt Judy can’t stand each other, that way we will make sure that they don’t stand next to each other in the photos! If the groom won’t have any grandparents at the wedding because they have passed on or if there are any other deceased family members, let your photographers know!
Send the list to family that is included in your pictures, once you and your photographer create the list and timeline for your wedding day, . Or at least tell them what time and where the photos will take place. Maybe even tell your cousin who always runs late that the pictures are actually a half and hour earlier so that you know she will be there on time. Making sure that everyone is on time and knows exactly what order they are needed, will leave no discrepancy and allows for this time to go smoother.
Look, I totally get it! This is the perfect opportunity to get a picture with every single person you invited to the wedding, but trust me when I say, you don’t need include everyone in your family photos. And trust me when I say, not everyone wants to be included. Narrow your list down to who is really important! Family photos do not need to take very long at all, and shouldn’t include every single person who was invited to your wedding. Focus on the people and groups of people that you see all the time or that are at every single holiday and get together you ever have.
I always put my couples experience before anything else. This is one of the happiest and most important days in your life. To me, the most important thing is that you have the best day possible and fully experience all the joy and love that comes with it. So my advice and my hope for you on your wedding day, is that whenever you feel yourself stressing or worrying about some aspect of the day, try to bring the focus back to what is truly important: You are marrying your best friend, your better half, the person who is going to help you live your best life. So as long as that is still happening, does everything need to go exactly according to plan? No, and truthfully, not matter how much planning you do, it won’t. Something is bound to not go exactly the way you thought it would. I hope that you do not let these little things impact your happiness on one of the most joyous days of your life.
I promise to be there with you all day, reassuring you, everything is okay, in fact everything is great. Because you found your partner for life.
Overall, plan as much as you can beforehand. But when the inevitable happens, you can feel confident that it will be okay. You hired a professional that has dealt with it all and will find a way to get the photographs that are important to you no matter what.
July 10, 2019
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