So you’re getting married and you want to make sure you have allll the memorable moments captured for when you want to look back on your special day! Some people might tell you to make a shot list of every single photo you just have to have. And while this post is about what shots to make sure you get, it isn’t actually a shot list! Like many photographers, I don’t work off a “list”. In fact, that could really hinder my creativity and would get in the way of you enjoying the experience. However, there are unique photos that your photographer may not know that you want and it’s important to share those details with them!
I’ll start with the photos that we will definitely be getting no matter what – family formals, bride and groom, bridal party (group + individuals), and photos throughout the ceremony/reception. These are the “must-haves” that every photographer knows you want. The classic photos that are so important. But there are other photos that could be super special for you that you should let us know!
There’s only so much time for family formals and bridal party photos but there are probably other groups of friends and family that you would like in photos as well! You can send a few extra group photo lists that can be taken either before the ceremony (if the friends are in the bridal party) or at the reception. For example, a lot of my brides are Aggies and they want a photo with all of their Aggie friends! Some were in sororities and want a photo with their sorority sisters. Or maybe they had a small Bible study group and they want a picture of the group together! These are just a few examples of some of the groups you may want to make sure to grab a photo with.
Most photographers take detail shots of the rings, invitation suites, shoes, etc. These are pretty standard. However, there are probably details that are unique to your special day! A necklace from your grandmother, a Bible thats been in your family for generations, notes you and your soon-to-be husband wrote each other, or your veil with lace from your mothers dress. My brides love thoughtful details and I want to make sure I capture all of them! Take note of the details you’ve taken the time to include in your day and make sure you put them all together for when you give your photographer the details at the beginning of your wedding day.
There are some reactions that are just too important to miss. Your groom’s face when he sees you in your dress for the first time. Your dad’s face as he walks you down the aisle. Your family and friends during the toast. Your bridesmaids when they see you in your dress getting ready. Some of the sweetest moments are these reactions because the emotions are so pure! There are tears, laughter, and many beaming smiles. These emotions are one of my favorite things to share with my brides in their final galleries!
You probably have a reception full of special details, traditions, and activities that are unique to you and your groom! Every reception I go to is different in some way and every bride wants the focus to be on something different for the pictures. Many of my brides love dancing with their friends and family to celebrate and these moments are super special. Some love food and have an amazing meal prepared that they want to get photos of people enjoying. Whatever special details you have planned for your reception – let your photographer know! That way we can make sure to capture those special moments.
Lastly – if you have some extra time during the day, see if your photographer can take a few bridal portraits for you. If you didn’t have a full bridal session this is a great way to have bridal portraits to cherish. If you did have a bridal session, then you can still take a few more! It’s always nice to have photos of you on your actual wedding day because the excitement is so easy to see in the pictures. It only takes a few minutes and classic bridals are photos you will be so thankful you took the time for!
There are so many sweet moments that your photographer will capture for you on your wedding day. But, you have spent time working on incorporating thoughtful details and planning out meaningful experiences for your family and friends, and we want to make sure we capture all of those things! I love that my brides put so much thought into their wedding days and it’s my job to capture all of it. When I photograph a wedding, I don’t work off of a “shot list” but I do make sure to capture all of the classic must-have photos, have my second shooter take more creative photos, and make sure I have a list of these additional groupings, details, and moments that are unique to each bride!
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