How to create your wedding day timeline

Wedding season is approaching fast! The emails are already rolling in so I figured I would create a post to help all of my brides and grooms plan their wedding day photo timeline. The timeline that you will give the photo and video team will differ from the timeline that you will give your other vendors. The photographers only need to know everything happening from the time they arrive until they leave and we need to know the exact time and locations for all of the photos, you can leave out the cocktail hour and reception, as it is all happening in the same place. The first thing to think about when putting together a timeline for your photographer is, are you having a first look? For those who do not know what a “first look” is, see this blog post first!  Ok, now that you know what a first look is, please read on for my recommendations.

Getting ready photos, 1 hour. Please have hair and makeup finished by the time the phototographers arrive, we only need a touch up photo. The lead shooter will photograph the bride preparing while the second shooter will photograph the groom. Please let us know the address for each shooter.

First look and bridal party photos,  1 – 1.5 hours. If your bridal party is small and you do not have a lot of locations to cover then 1 hour is enough. We will help to set up the first look, ensuring that the grooms back is turned and the bride walks up behind, of course it is your wedding you can do it any way you like!

Family photos, 30 minutes. If your family is especially large then you may want to budget 45 minutes. Please tell everyone to be there 15 minutes early. I can recommend a location to do your family photos, usually outside or on a staircase works well. For large groups I like to have some seated and some standing like this and this photo.

Rest time, before the ceremony 30 minutes. This is time to use the rest room, powder your nose etc. You may want to put on your veil now if you did not use it for photos, please let us know so we can make sure to capture the veil being put on!)

Ceremony, usually 30 minutes when done at the same venue as the reception. If it is another location then please factor in travel time.

Cocktail hour, usually 1 hour. If you did not do a first look and do not have a break then we may be doing all of the bridal party and family photos during this time. You may want to speak to your venue about extending the cocktail hour if that is the case.

Reception, we will photograph every event during the ceremony so you do not need to write us a list. However if you feel more comfortable writing one please feel free. The typical events we photograph are, the entrance, toasts, speeches, first dance, parent dances, guests dancing, guests mingling, food, cake, desert, cake cutting.

*We will come to you at the beginning of salad course to ask you if you would like to visit each table with us to do table photos, this is a good way to ensure that you have a nice photo with every guest at the wedding. We can also do them without you if you like.