What is the best way to ensure that the memories of your wedding day live on for generations? Through wedding photos.
A photo will capture that smile, that tear of joy, those beautiful flowers, ensuring that the best day of your life is eternalized.
A wedding photography checklist will make it easy for the newlyweds and their photographer to work collaboratively, ensuring that those special moments are captured and translated into memories that will last a long a long time.
To come up with the perfect list, you need to ask yourself the following questions:
- How many wedding photos do you need?
- What family photos should be taken at a wedding? And,
- What photos do you need at your wedding?
To answer the question on what photos you need at your wedding, we will provide you with a shot list of must-have wedding photos.
But first, let us answer the first two questions.
How many wedding photos do you need?
This will depend on the photographer you hire and, of course, your preference. There is no set standard for the number of photos a photographer should provide. But on average, you can expect around 400-800 photos from a professional photographer if they are covering an 8-hour event. If you want more, you can consider hiring two or more photographers.
What family photos should be taken at a wedding?
It is easy to get wound up over which family members to include in the family photos, especially if there is limited time. So apart from the obvious ones, that is your parents, siblings, and grandparents, who else should make the cut?
Consider the very important people in your life, then work your way backward. This can include people who raised you or helped you during a tough time or those family members you are very close friends with. These are the ones to have in the family pictures.
From Getting Ready To Heading Home – All The Photos You Need To Capture on Your Wedding Day
1. Getting Ready
The time you spend in your bridal attire is important and can make some very interesting photos. Here are a few must-have pictures when getting ready:
- Bride and bridesmaids in their robes or other getting ready outfits
- Makeup application process. You can have the photographer start right before the final touches
- Bridesmaids getting ready together
- Bridesmaids as they are helping the bride get into her wedding dress
- Final zipping or buttoning up of the dress
- Groomsmen helping groom get ready
- Groom and groomsmen putting on tie or boutonniere
Shots of details are just as important as those of people. If you spent a lot of money on flowers, you would also like them captured in your pictures, right? So here are details you should never miss in your photos:
- Up-close pictures of the wedding dress when displayed on the hanger. It should be captured from various angles, both front, and back
- Capture the details such as lace and embellishments on the wedding dress
- Bridal accessories such as the veil, shoes, etc
- Bride and groom putting on jewelry
- Don’t forget the wedding rings
- Floral arrangements and the bouquet
- Wedding invitation cards
- Wedding gifts
- The décor
These are the moments after everybody is done getting ready. Must-have shots to take during this time include:
- Guests arriving and socializing
- Picture of the bride alone from various angles.
- The groom in his full attire
- First look – expression when the groom sees the bride and vice versa. When they hug or kiss, or laugh
- Bride with her dad
- The groom while he receives sage advice from the dad.
- The groom and his groomsmen leaving for the ceremony
A wedding shooting list comes in handy a lot during the ceremony. There are so many special moments to capture during the ceremony. Your list should not miss:
- A shot of the venue
- Ushers helping guests find their seats
- Entrance of the bridal party
- The groom waiting for the bride at the altar
- The bridal party waiting for the bride at the altar
- The ring bearer or flower girl
- The bride walking down the aisle
- The reaction of the groom when he sees his bride (especially if there was no first look)
- Bride and groom standing at the altar
- Exchange of vows
- Exchange of rings
- The first kiss as a married couple
- The couple signing the register
- The bridal party recession
5. Group Portraits
The time between the ceremony and the reception is the best for formal pictures, such as group portraits. You can include every pairing you can think of, i.e.
- The couple and the entire bridal party
- The bride with her bridesmaids
- The groom with his men
- The bride or groom with each of their parents
- The couple with their immediate family members
- Bride and groom with the best couple
- The groom with his best man
- The bride with her maid of honor
The list for group portraits is endless. There are so many combinations. Be creative and mix it up.
This is when you can capture all the fun. So, what are some of the must-have photos for the reception?
- Closeup photos of the cake and centerpieces
- The bride and groom’s arrival
- The gift table
- Toasts and the couple’s reaction to them
- Cutting of the cake
- Pictures of the guests
- Food being served
- The couple’s first dance
- Bride and groom dancing with their parents
- Guests dancing and having fun
- Bouquet toss and catch
- Garter toss and catch
- Any special event or games planned
- The exit with bubbles and confetti
Remember that this photo shot list is not set in stone. You can add or remove shots depending on your preferences. It is your wedding, after all. But make sure to also consult with your photographer.
Your photographer should understand and deliver exactly what you want. So, hire one you are confident in and one who gets your vision. That said, don’t forget to have fun at your wedding.
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