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Wedding timeline

Wedding Day Timeline

There are many magazines and blogs that share sample timelines for a typical wedding day. They're often shown based on a 6 hour wedding or 8 hour wedding. These timelines don't take into account your priorities or preferences. They're great for general planning purposes but you should work with your preferred vendors to prioritize what's most important to you and allocate time to the areas of the day that mean the most to you.

How much time do I need for photography?

On your wedding day, you will probably want photos of everything! From candid shots of wedding accessories such as shoes and rings, to genuine and natural portraits, and pictures of the wedding venue. However, it’s important to remember that taking these photographs takes time so you should do a little planning of the important memories you want captured. I work with my couples to create a timeline that ensures all the important details are photographed. Here are a few tips for allowing enough time for everything you want photographed.

Rings, Bling, and Pretty Little Things

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Even though I specialize in candid and emotional photos of people, I want to capture all the accessories and details of your day. If you paid for it, I shoot it!

In order to get beautiful shots of the wedding rings laying on the table, the bride’s dress hanging before you put it on, or the bridal bouquet, you need to plan for it. It’s best to have these photos taken early before the mayhem begins. Have these items ready and waiting for your photographer to arrive. I generally spend 15-20 minutes on these details.


If you’d like to have photos taken as you get makeup done, and get dressed, I would suggest giving your photographer at least an hour to get these photos. These will be some of the most emotional images, highlighting the anticipation of what’s to come. This is also the most common time when things run behind schedule. You want to be sure you have time to capture it so it’s best to add more time than you think you’ll need. Add an additional 30 minutes to capture the guys, not including travel time between locations.

Romantic Portraits

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It’s best to for the bride and groom to have their romantic portraits taken right after they have prepped and gotten dressed. Not only is this a great time because the bride’s makeup and hair is fresh, but this guarantees that a variety of portraits are created. The cocktail hour does not allow much time for family portraits, bridal party photos and romantic portraits. The couple is often rushed and surround by people, which makes it hard to relax and be intimate. Once the reception begins it will be hard to pull you or your spouse away to get additional portraits. Whether before or after the ceremony, you should allow at least 30 minutes to capture romantic portraits of you and your new spouse.

Reception And Venue Details

Most brides spend a lot of time picking out the perfect reception décor only to never see it first hand. The best way to capture its beauty is before the guests enter. This means you have to allow enough time to complete family portraits, wedding party portraits and your romantic couple portraits, if you’re not doing a first look before the guests are allowed into the reception. Having a second photographer is the best way to do this without extending cocktail hour beyond an hour. If time allows, I will bring you into the space to photograph your reaction and some quick portraits.

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