Everyone loves having family photos with the bride and groom but no one like taking those photos.
Am I right or am I right?!
Planning wedding day family photos is a crucial piece of pre-wedding homework. My goal as a wedding photographer is to amaze guests at my speed and efficiency when powering through the obligatory family photo section of the day without losing quality or groupings. How does this happen? Communication, communication, communication . . . and a wee bit of photographer bossiness. 😉 P
- Communicate with your family. When you work ahead of time planning wedding day family photos and communicating which ones are important, wedding day miscommunications can be eliminated! Ask your fiance, parents, and in-laws what photos they’d like taken and what groupings are priorities.
- Communicate with your photographer. I’ll remind you about a month before your wedding, of course, but once you send me your list of wedding day family photo groupings I will be able to order the list for maximum efficiency. Plus, once it’s out of your head and onto my paper it’s one less thing for you to remember on your wedding day!
- Communicate with your VIPs. Make sure everyone who is on that list knows they’re on the photo list so no one runs off right after the ceremony for a last-minute gift or to implement a wedding-day prank! When your family knows that photos are happening and when photos are happening, we can eliminate waiting around for a wandering Uncle!
Wedding day family photos don’t have to be a tediously long process and I definitely turn into a Very Bossy Photographer for wedding day family photos so that we can get on to the part-tay as fast as possible! As you’re planning your list, know that each grouping on your list will add about two minutes onto the family photo session. (On average, of course: more people in the shot will increase that average, and fewer people will decrease the time required!)
If you have a large family (or a tight timeline), designate a family photo helper from inside the family — someone who knows names and faces and can help corral the right people for the right shot!
No two families will ever be the same and no two wedding day family photo lists will be identical. But maybe this template list will help you plan?
Template for Planning Wedding Day Family Photos
(Remember: every family is different so make your own wedding day family photo list based on what family will attend and what family you want to have photographed!)
Groom’s Extended Family
Bride and Groom with each set of his grandparents
Bride and Groom with four Grandparents, Parents, and Siblings
Groom’s Immediate Family
Bride and Groom with his parents
Bride and Groom with his parents and two siblings
Groom and his two siblings
Groom and Mom
Groom and Dad
Bride’s Extended Family
Bride and Groom with each set of her grandparents
Bride and Groom with her Grandparents, Parents, and Siblings
Bride’s Immediate Family
Bride and Groom with her parents and three siblings + one brother-in-law + nephew
Bride and Groom and her three siblings + brother-in-law
Bride and Groom with her parents
Bride and Mom
Bride and Dad