Top Tips for Quick and Easy Family and Group Portraits On Your Wedding Day.
Updated: Oct 21, 2022
Here are my 7 top tips for making sure that your group portraits are as easy and stress-free as possible!
We all want your wedding day to be full of laughter, happiness and time spent with your nearest and dearest. This is why you really need those group portraits to run smoothly.
The longer it takes to organise each shot, the less time you have to spend enjoying the champagne reception! Trust me, your cheeks will be hurting by the time your group shots are over, so use my top tips below to help things run quickly and efficiently.
Make a list
This may seem like an obvious one, but you'd be surprised a how many couples get to the wedding day and either have no list, or they made a list and left it in the hotel room!
Start making your list as soon as you have your RSVPs back. You can take a look at who will be at your wedding and start to separate those into groups of close family, friends etc, etc...
As an example (substitute bride/groom where applicable), you could use the following template:
Entire Wedding Party
Bride, Groom & Children
Bride, Groom & Bridal Party
Bride & Bridal Party
Bride, Groom & Groomsmen
Groom & Groomsmen
Bride, Groom, Bridal Party & Groomsmen
Bride, Groom & Parents
Bride, Groom & Grandparents
Bride, Groom, Children, Parents & Grandparents
Bride & Bride's Parents
Groom & Groom's Parents
Bride, Groom & Siblings
Bride & Siblings
Groom & Siblings
Bride, Groom & Cousins
Bride, Groom & Close Friends
As you can see from this short list, the combinations are endless. Sorting these groups ahead of time will save you precious minutes on your wedding day!
Get some shots out of the way
If you are getting ready at the same location as some of the guests on your shot list, then it is a fantastic time-saver to get some of these shots done ahead of the ceremony. You can easily get photos with your bridal party, groomsmen and parents. Just make sure you are ready in plenty of time before the wedding gets underway.
Let the guests know
A great way to ensure that uncle Bob doesn't wander off to take a nap after the ceremony is to let everyone know if they're on the list!
My advice is to print this list on small pieces of paper with a polite note to let everyone know when group shots will be, and place them on every other chair in the ceremony room. You could also try to text or email the list along with a polite reminder to stick around after the ceremony to everyone who will be involved a few days before the wedding.
Get some help
It is always a great idea to have someone who knows the guests to help organise the group photos. You can assign this job to the maid of honour, best man, usher or a family member. Having someone who can easily spot the correct guests for each shot, helps everything run smoothly.
Concentrate on the photos
With the usual time for group photos being straight after your ceremony, it is only natural that your guests will want to come and congratulate you, buy you a drink and give you both a big hug! While this is obviously a very important part of your wedding day, there will be plenty of time after your group photos for celebrations. The easier it is for us to get through the group shots, the sooner you can get back to your guests. If you concentrate on these group shots, they will be done and dusted much quicker!
Make sure your photographer is aware of family situations
We all know that families are complicated. So to make sure that your photographer doesn't make anyone feel uncomfortable, it is important that you make them aware of any complications ahead of time. We don't want to call Mum's new boyfriend "Dad" or shout for a Grandparent who's no longer with us. To make sure everyone has a great time, it is in everybody's best interest to let your photographer be aware of any issues there may be.
Have we missed something?
As tempting as it may be to interrupt the original list with shots of friends or family members you may have forgotten, it is always best to leave these additional photos till the list is complete. If everyone is on the same page, the shots on the list get done very quickly and there will be plenty of time to get the add-ons once we are finished.
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