Wedding Tips: Plan for your wedding photography

Planning a Michigan wedding is a giant project. Every detail is meticulously planned and you want it all to come together perfectly in your pictures the way you’re envisioning. Here’s some of the best advice I can give you to help with that. Plan for your photography.

The key to being able to get everything you are imagining out of your wedding day really revolves around your photographer, timing and communication. Your photographer is responsible for a good part of the wedding day. Not only are they photographing every detail and moment, but they have to get you you through the day and to each venue on time.

It may sound harsh but around here, we don’t run late – we eliminate. Yes a little harsh I know, but true. Your wedding is a huge production requiring every member of your team to work together to precisely pull off the day you’re envisioning. Hair and makeup running late could cause us to miss some portrait time before the ceremony having to squeeze it in afterwards. Adding this extra time in could make your portrait time run late, which in turn can make your arrival run late, then your guests are hungry, dinner is getting cold… Do you see how it can snowball from there?

To stop that ball from rolling, I wanted to provide you with some tips to get the most out of your wedding photography. Keep reading for some guidance on planning your photography for a stress free day.

Work with your photographer to set the timeline. I initiate this process with all of my couples because a thoughtfully planned timeline for your wedding day will reduce stress of everyone involved. You, your wedding party, family members, guests and vendors will all appreciate it. This will let you to enjoy every little moment of the day you so carefully planned and allow your photographer to capture your day the way you hired them to.

Make a list of items you want included in your photographs and pack them beforehand. Some things include: an extra invitation, hanger, jewelry, garter, etc. If there’s any particular reason you chose any of these items let your photographer know. Each and every wedding day is so unique and there could be details that you’ve included that may not immediately stand out to us. Communicating these items to your photographer ahead of time helps ensures that no detail is missed.

Have your flowers delivered to the location you are getting ready at. Having them on hand during the prep provides a cohesive look your wedding pictures and ultimately helps tie everything together in your album. Again be sure to let your photographer know if there’s any special details. Your bouquet will be photographed throughout the day, but if there are any special tributes let them know!

Did you give your bridesmaids and groomsmen any gifts? Include those on your list too.

Michigan Wedding Photographer
Michigan Wedding PhotographerLadies, hair and makeup always takes longer than planned. Always. It’s no one’s fault. It just happens. Let’s face it. We get chatty, need bathroom or champagne breaks, a quick snag to fix, a million little things can happen. But if you plan for it, you’ll be ensured a stress free day and won’t be rushing to get out the door. Michigan Wedding PhotographerPurchase any alcohol and snacks for after the ceremony ahead of time. {Ahem} Best Man and Maid of Honor… When we have to stop to pick up these libations, it cuts into our portrait time. While we’re at it, don’t forget the food! It’s a good idea to get a tray of subs too. Everyone will appreciate a little nourishment after the day’s excitement and drinking on an empty stomach is never a good idea. Michigan Wedding PhotographerIs that large family photograph with all of your aunts, cousins, grandparents, sisters, brothers, etc on your must have list? That’s great! Please designate someone to help us, preferably someone who knows who all the family members are.  I have no problem including 35 of your closest family members in one picture, but if we have to round them all up too, that’s going to take more time away from your photos! Having someone help us out will make this process much less stressful. Michigan Wedding PhotographerThe size of your wedding party does matter. Don’t get me wrong, I love big wedding parties. They are fun! We had 26 in ours. 🙂 But larger wedding parties also means more time is required to not only photograph them, but round them all up too. Communicating your photography timeline with your VIPs will allow them to know exactly when they are needed for portraits. Michigan Wedding PhotographerPlanning a special entrance, dance, exit etc? Let us know. I always run down the night with your DJ upon our arrival, sometimes those little details can be left out. Communicating them will help make sure lights are properly placed and already anticipating what’s next to capture the best possible angle. Michigan Wedding PhotographerWant sunset pictures? We have to take you outside precisely at sunset. It only lasts for a few minutes. We hate pulling people away from their dinner, but it’s a moment we have to seize. If you want to eat that dinner you so carefully chose without interruption, then we have to plan accordingly.

We love details and I think that the empty room shot helps tell the story of your day. Months, maybe years of planning all those little details coming together at once. Bonus points if you schedule it so you get to see it before your guest arrive too. I really recommend getting to your reception and taking a peek at the room before the guests are inside… really absorb that the day is here, you’re finally married, you worked so hard to pull all of this together, and now you’re hosting a fabulous party in this gorgeous space to celebrate with your favorite people! Extra bonus points if I get to take pictures of your reaction 🙂

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