PLANNING YOUR WEDDING DAY PHOTOGRAPHY

 

Hey guys!  i’ve put together a little “cheat sheet” that will make your life easier while planning your wedding day.  Use this sheet as reference when you are asking yourselves how much time you need to dedicate to your wedding day photography, as well as what time you should start getting ready for the big celebration.  These are purely recommendations, and since every wedding day is different should be taken as such.  So take a look and please feel free to contact ME for any questions. 

 

Getting Ready (1 hour):

From Laurie & Mark's Wedding 

From Laurie & Mark's Wedding 

As a storyteller, I see this part as the beginning of your big day.  You can think of it as the first chapter of your wedding day story.  Thinking about your partner while you both prepare for the ceremony, surrounded by your closest friends and family, this is when the anticipation builds up to the max.  Your mother doing up your dress just like when you were a little girl, your father is there to tuck the back of your tie underneath your shirt collar.  The small, in between moments that organically present themselves will be the memories of excitement like no other.

We recommend starting the wedding day coverage 1 hour before the bride gets into her dress.  That allows us to spend enough time and really capture the essence of that part of the day.  As every wedding is different, we don’t have a formula we apply to each one.  Instead of forcing ourselves on what’s happening, we much rather let the day unfold, and focus on looking for strong moments that will resonate with you forever.  

Both photographers' start time is always the same.  While Shlomi is typically photographing the girls getting ready, Jocelyn will be hanging with the guys. 

Bride/ Groom Portraits (15 minutes):

After you get all fancy and ready to go, we like to take 15 minutes to only photograph YOU.  Minutes before you see your partner all done up, your facial expressions and body language are worth documenting.  Undecided between nervous and excited, a few portraits to remember that sliver of time go a long way.   

First Look (15 minutes):

If you are having a late afternoon ceremony, a first look moment can be romantic and intimate, as well as beneficial to the photography schedule.  Although we plan to do it, the actual first look is 100% candid.  We will choose a location together that works best aesthetically and light wise, and let you guys do your thing.  That said if you want to go the traditional route and see each other for the first time walking down the aisle that’s great!  Regardless of when and how you do it, seeing your partner for the first time on your wedding day is one of the more exciting parts of the day if not the most exciting one!  

Family Photos (45 minutes):

From Jodi & Jimmy's Wedding

From Jodi & Jimmy's Wedding

From Adam & Jacquie's Wedding

From Adam & Jacquie's Wedding

From Nour & Tarick's Wedding

From Nour & Tarick's Wedding

Without any doubt, this is one of the most important parts of the day (when it comes to photography).  As I like to say, these are the photos that will most likely end up framed in your parents’ living room.  And that is a big deal.

The family formal photos can be a bit complicated as there are so many people involved.  To make things easier, here are a few tips to help make this part of the day go as smoothly as possible:

  • Focus on immediate family members and significant others.  If there are more groups to photograph, we can always dedicate a time to photograph them during the    reception.  This way we maximize the time we have in our hands and keep ourselves in schedule. 
  • Assign a designated person to coordinate and organize the groups.  Choose someone who knows the family members and is assertive enough to get everybody in one spot and keep them there!  As photographers, it is hard for us to work with a list of names as we do not know the families and cannot connect a name to a face. 
  • Encourage guests not to take photos so that the group’s focus and eye contact is on the professional.  Generally speaking, we prefer that other than the family members that need to be photographed, no guests will be called to the family photos shooting location. 
  • Make sure you leave enough time in case someone is running late!  Again, the more people to coordinate, the more complicated the task is.  Time buffers are your best friends on your wedding day! 

Bridal Party Photos (30-45 minutes):

This is a great opportunity to loosen up and have some fun with the dear friends you chose to spend the day with!  Jocelyn and I really enjoy mixing things up when shooting bridal parties.  She will photograph the girls while I shoot the guys and vice versa.   Choose a location that is versatile and has a lot to offer in terms of photo opportunities, and preferably close enough in order to minimize the time spent on traveling.  If you do choose to travel somewhere for bridal party photos we are totally down!  Just make sure you account for the traveling time in your schedule! 

Couple Portraits (1.5 hours):

JUST THE TWO OF YOU.

Isn’t it what this whole day is about?  Portraits of you two can be romantic, playful, goofy, or all of the above!  This is your time to take a break from the wedding day's craziness and focus on each other.  All you need to do is be yourself with your best friend.  We will take care of the rest! 

When planning the day, we always try to schedule the couple portrait as close to sunset as we can.  As the sun gets low in the sky, the light is much more romantic and flattering!  Ideal time to shoot! 

Ceremony:

The ceremony is all strictly documentary style.  We do absolutely nothing to interfere with the way things happen. 

Dinner:

While dinner is served, we focus on speeches, toasts or any other activity that is taking place during that time.  Out of respect, we do not photograph guests eating.  It is also a great time for us to take a break from a long day of shooting and recharge our batteries with a delicious meal!  We ask to sit in the same space in order to be able to hear and see the event space.  In case something happens we can get up and start shooting away. 

Dance Party:

If the getting ready is the first chapter of your wedding story, we believe that the dance floor is the last.  Both Jocelyn and I absolutely LOVE the dance floor, and the people rocking it.  We get right in there and that can been seen through the photos! 

 

 

We hope this was helpful!  Please remember that recommended shooting times do not account for schedule delays.  Please allow for extra time in your final itinerary!