Join our community of Solution Seekers!

Wedding Planning and Budget Basics

Wedding Photography Tips From an Industry Insider

Trustworthy advice on finding that special someone to capture your big day.

By Sarah Stebbins
Married couple kissing on the stepsSarma Ozols1 of 4

How can couples ensure their photographers get all the right shots? Does it help to provide a detailed list?
I have strong feelings about “the list.” For formal photos, I supply a general form with a rundown of the group shots I will take and we can modify that based on the clients’ wishes, family dynamics, etc. This is the only list I want to work from. While I encourage couples to tell me what’s important to them, when they give me a sheet spelling out everything they want photographed—the bride with Aunt Martha, the bouquet on the farm table—I’m not seeing the wedding day anymore. Instead, I’m looking at a piece of paper worrying about checking things off. If clients have someone special they want photographed outside of their immediate family and wedding party, I ask that they flag me down when they’re with that person. As for the rest, if you’ve hired a reputable photographer, and you can see yourself in his or her work, chances are you’re going to be happy with the results. And we will probably photograph the bouquet on the farm table anyway.

Do you recommend taking formal photos before or after the ceremony?
I respect when couples want to have that experience of seeing each other for the first time at the ceremony. But if they’re open to it, I love to get the formal shots done beforehand. We often set it up so the bride and groom meet first and have this wonderful, intimate moment that we document. Then everyone else shows up and we do the group photos. The whole shoot usually takes 45 minutes to an hour. It’s great because once the ceremony is over, there’s nothing left to do except have fun. When we do pictures post-ceremony, people sometimes get impatient because they’re sacrificing social time and the bride and groom end up missing the entire cocktail hour.

 
Read More About:Weddings

Related Content

Saltwater taffy in a Paper Source container

Unique Real Weddings

Find wedding ideas and draw inspiration from brides and grooms who have already tied the knot.

What do you think about this article? Share your own solutions and ideas

View Earlier Comments
Advertisement

Quick Tip

Letterpress calendar

Avoid planning your wedding near the floral-heavy holidays of Mother’s Day and Valentine’s Day. Otherwise you’ll have to deal with supply-and-demand issues, which could jack up prices.