A Wedding day timeline is such an important tool for your event. I am fairly unconventional in my methods, however a timeline is one organization tool I find very appealing. It doesn’t have to be inflexible, or boring either! We all know planning a wedding (or any large event) can be soooo cumbersome and it’s really easy to over complicate things, especially when it comes to time management. I take great pride in helping my couples plan and execute an efficient wedding day timeline that allows us to go with the flow and spaces things efficiently. The photographer is often one of the first wedding vendors booked, I feel it is our job to educate and inform the couple (you!) on time management. How much time is needed to photograph each event is often overlooked until the very last minute, I aim to help you know ahead of time! So let’s start with…
Months & years went into thinking about, planning & finding the perfect dress or outfit, selecting colors, deciding on flowers, rings, shoes, and don’t forget the invitations & decor! These little details can get overlooked as the day progresses and they are essential parts of telling your wedding day story, which is why I choose to photograph details as soon as I arrive. It can take a little over an hour to style and photograph each vignette, the invitation suite, ring shots, the dress and shoes. Not sure what an invitation suite is? Or where to start? Pinterest to the rescue! Ha.
I photograph subtle gestures during this time, I will guide the bride to the best light to capture the finishing makeup touches, putting on jewelry, perfume, her veil, etc. Don’t worry, I won’t forget the groom, as long as he is getting ready near by either myself or my second photographer will swing through and grab detail shots of his shoes, accessories, and guide him through some subtle gestures, such as buttoning his cuff, putting on his tie, adjusting his vest, or tying his shoes.
If the bride and groom wish to see each other before the ceremony, we schedule in time for a first look (Click for more info on why I like first looks). I like to keep it romantic, simple & real, typically the bride and groom wish to be alone for the intimacy of the moment. These usually take 20-45 minutes.
I prefer to photograph 3-4 “poses” and prompts of the bridal party to keep the shots organized and efficient. Depending on the bridal party size timing may vary, I typically schedule an hour. I make sure to capture at least 1 classic look at the camera pose for Mom & Dad and 2 unique or prompted poses, as well as an individual portrait of the bride and each bridesmaid and the groom with each groomsmen or however your wedding party is set up.
Formal Group & Family Formals:
Family formals are very important, I usually don’t skimp on the planning that goes into them. Emotions are high, and tensions can rise if family members are left out of the formal portrait process. No one wants to deal with that, so I urge my brides to create a detailed list of formal groupings including names and the order to be photographed.
The length of your ceremony can vary from 15 minutes to an hour. I position myself in several different locations to capture unique perspectives.
Sunset portraits are my absolute favorite, and some form of this light is a non-negotiable in my mind – the first two photos in this set are from blue hour – right as the sun has already set. Honestly, there is no other time in the day that you get the ethereal, warm, whimsical lighting like you do just before the sun dips behind the mountains or horizon.
Allow 2-4 hours for whatever reception festivities you have planned – I love some of the more traditional aspects of a reception but really find myself pulled towards the less predictable. You do you though, boo, it really is a personal preference thing when it comes to your wedding day – and no decision is a wrong one, just be true to who you and your partner are!
If this all seems just a little too overwhelming, don’t fret! There are some amazing coordinators in the Wedding Market in Tennessee that can help you out. As a full time Memphis wedding photographer, I assure you I have some BOMB recommendations!
I’d love to chat about your wedding timeline and any vendor recommendations. 😉 I’m an email away!
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