Wedding family portraits have the potential to be PURE, UNADULTERATED CHAOS. One person doesn’t know they were supposed to be in a photo, so it has to be retaken. One group arrives 30 minutes late because they couldn’t find the venue. Another person doesn’t show up for the big group shot, two people leave to look for them, the original person wanders in, the two others are still missing, so one more goes to look. CHAOS!
Good news, though – family portraits can actually go really smoothly if they’re planned correctly. And planning is easy when you have an asia dore blog on standby!
Make family portraits painless in 5 easy steps:
1. Send your photographer your photo combination requests (with names!)
This information is INCREDIBLY useful for your photographer – it allows them to organize the process efficiently and call out names quickly. It’s also a good idea to let them know of any circumstances that might make for awkward or tense vibes – circumstances like divorce, recent deaths, family members who don’t speak to each other, etc – and let them know how you’d like the portraits handled in light of these circumstances.
2. Schedule them before the ceremony
Scheduling beforehand is the best choice. Why? First of all, everyone will look clean and fresh (because tears during the ceremony can and will happen). It’s also tough to track people down once they’re distracted by the food, fun, and friends at the reception. And can you blame them?! It’s much easier to snag everyone early on than pull them away from a fun reception.
3. Reserve enough time
You can estimate photos will take about 3 minutes per group – and remember it’s better to have too much time than too little!
4. Make sure everyone knows where to be and what time to be there
Once you’ve got your timeline set, a quick text, email, or phone call will do. Make sure everyone who’s in the photos knows where to meet (usually a central/obvious location at the venue). There’s also nothing wrong with telling everyone to be there 15 minutes before they actually need to be there (your secret is safe with me!).
5. Ask a bridal party member or friend to help
If there’s someone on your guest list who knows your family by name (and isn’t in the photos themselves), ask if they’ll help out during family portraits. It’s really helpful for your photographer to have someone nearby to point out family members, to help get the larger groups organized, and to find someone if they wander off.