Family portraits are very important to a lot of our brides and grooms. It’s a nice way to look back at who came to help you celebrate your big day. It’s also a big win because everyone is looking awesome all dressed up!
The only downside of family portraits is that they can be a point of stress on the wedding day. So, we thought we would offer a few tips to make the family portraits at your wedding as stress-free as possible!
- Talk with your photographer about your timeline. We typically recommend 30 minutes for basic family photos. If we talk with a bride and groom that has a lot of extended families they want to be photographed, we typically need to put more time in their timeline for this. Everyone is different!
- Discuss family portraits with your husband-to-be before the big day. You might or might not be on the same page about who you want in these photos. It’s a good idea to think this through before the day of the wedding and talk with your photographer about what you want. One of you might want your second and third cousins while the other might just want the immediate family. Every family is very different, but some of the groupings we see most often are:
- Bride & Groom with Bride’s immediate family (including sibling photos)
- Bride & Groom with Bride’s parents (this includes breakouts of the bride with dad, bride with mom, bride with mom and dad, etc.)
- Bride & Groom with Bride’s grandparents
- Bride & Groom with Groom’s immediate family
- Bride & Groom with Groom’s parents
- Bride & Groom with Groom’s grandparents
- Share any special circumstances. Things like mom and dad are divorced and we do not want them in the same picture, Grandma has trouble standing and will need a chair for photos, etc. We want to know if you are incredibly close to your step-dad and want individual pictures with just him. All of those details are so nice to know as photographers so we can come prepared and be efficient with the time. We want to be sensitive and supportive in the way we pose your family, but we need the information to do this.
- Assign a photo wrangler! This is so important. There are several times when we are missing just one or two people and it holds up the timeline for a good 15-20 minutes. Trust us, you do not want that! Make sure your wrangler has an actual list of all of the groupings you want and who will be in each of these (we typically have this as well). Try to make this someone that knows almost everyone on the list so they can easily get them together. You want these photos to run smoothly and not have to be finished at a later time in the day.
- Give your family a schedule. Give them a specific time and place to show up for pictures. Tell them at least 10 minutes BEFORE the family portraits are scheduled to begin so everyone is on time.
The family portraits from your wedding day are going to be treasured by not only you but also the other members of your family. We hope these tips help you in creating a stress-free experience for yourself and your family!
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