Fact: Wedding days can be stressful. Fact: They don’t have to be if you’re prepared. As your wedding photographer, it’s important to us that your day is beautiful and as stress-free as possible. Having a relaxed day means you can enjoy the day you’ve worked so hard to create. After years of experience, I’ve noticed that one of the busiest parts of wedding days tends to be family formals. Today’s blog is all about a few quick tips to make wedding family portraits less stressful for you and your fiancé (and your families!).
1) Designate someone who knows your families to help. Sometimes this is a family member, bridal party member or a planner, if they know everyone well enough. Their main role is to help us gather those in pictures and know which name goes with who on your list.
2) Make your list detailed for your photographer. This makes sure that we can run through the list quickly and efficiently.
3) Keep formal portraits to those closest to you – we can always get the others during the reception! We recommend aiming for 8-10 family formals. Smaller breakdowns can either occur during this time frame or the reception. This honestly depends on how well everyone listens!
4) Try to find somewhere to send the rest of your guests (Hello cocktail hour!). If you don’t, they’re going to be hanging out, watching, in the background or generally just being distracting. It also makes it SO much easier for everyone to focus on the photographer and not be looking at their random friends.
5) Encourage other family members to let the photographer be the sole camera. Although Uncle Joe may want a family portrait, remind them that you’ll get your images and be able to share them. In today’s digital age, it’s even easier to do that than ever before. When other family members or friends try to grab the same shot, those in the portrait get distracted too.
Family formals don’t have to be stressful if you plan ahead. Be sure to ask your photographers for more tips and pass along the list you’ve created! I’m here to help!
Michelle Harris is a professional wedding photographer and nationally sought after wedding industry educator that focuses on creating amazing experiences and relationships with the artistically focused clients and students.
A mother of two gorgeous little girls and married to the man of her dreams, Michelle lives in Fredericksburg, Virginia, but travels the world for her clients and speaking engagements.