Wedding Photography Timeline Planning


Most of the timing decisions that need to be made are independent of me. In fact, it is almost impossible for me to give general timing advice because I am not aware all the surrounding details, locations & travel time, etc. I can provide guidance for the 2 major photo opportunities that you must schedule adequate time for.

Note: Any time estimates listed include shooting only. Be sure to accommodate for travel between locations.  



  • Typically done directly after the ceremony at the same location, but can be done before the ceremony with a First Look.
  • The time needed to do Family Formals varies significantly. On average I spend 30-45 minutes doing about 12-15 different groups. If you have a larger family with 20-30 different groupings I would schedule up to one hour.
  • Communication and organization is critical in making the family formals go as smoothly as possible.
  • Prepare a detailed list of groups, starting with the largest and taking away people to make smaller groups. Please do not leave this for the day of the wedding. There is no "normal" set of family photos; every wedding is different.
  • Please remember to check with both sets of parents for any additional desired groupings.
  • Communicate to each family member ahead of time where and when they will be taking photos. If this is done after the ceremony tell them that it is important to not leave the area to get a drink, socialize or use the bathroom if not absolutely necessary. 
  • It is very important to assign someone to gather family members at the appropriate time as a reminder, especially if you do not have a wedding planner. Inevitably, people can wander and someone important can go missing, slowing down the entire process.

2: Bridal Party + Couple portraits

  • Can be done before the Ceremony with a First Look, in-between the Ceremony and Reception.
  • Schedule at least 60 minutes of shooting time for Bridal Party and Couple portraits. Add additional time if your bridal party is larger than average. 
  • Feel free to add time for a longer Couple Portrait session if you love being in front of the camera. I reccomend adding up to 2 hours.
  • If you are having your Ceremony and Reception at the same location, I do recommend a First Look. This way the Family Formals, Bridal Party and Couple Portraits aren't rushed, and you won't miss your entire cocktail hour.
Bridal Party