November 5, 2020

5 Steps to Amazing Family Formals and Group Pictures on your Wedding Day

When you picture your wedding day, what do you see? Do you think about group pictures? Flowers?

Do you envision all of the people gathered around you? Maybe you see yourself in a white, flowy dress or in a tuxedo, flowers and a lovely church, and a photographer snapping pictures.

Either way, your dream day is just that: your dream day. You hope beyond hope that you’ll be able to make it happen. And you want to be able to remember it. Photos have become essential parts of weddings. They serve as beautiful reminders of one of the most important days of your life.

But how do you ensure you get fantastic family or group pictures? Learn more below!

1. Inform The Photographer of Sticky Family Dynamics

Photographers are artists behind the lens. They often judge the lighting, the poses, and the background, trying to compose the best shot. Often, they will try to direct or make suggestions while shooting. While this can result in some fantastic photos, it can also lead to some awkward situations.

By giving your photographer a heads-up of any parents that are divorced or any other complications you may save everyone sticky situations.

2. Determine Who Will be In The Family Wedding Group Pictures

Every wedding is a bit different because every family/group is different.

When planning your wedding, decide who you want to be in your formal family/group portraits. Do you want a more extensive shoot involving your entire family? Or will a more intimate one on one photos suffice? If possible, give your photographer a list of desired groupings ahead of time. This will both save time and make the process easier.

The list can look like this:

Us & Both sets of Parents
Bride-Groom & Mom & Dad
Us & Uncle
Us & Flower girls

3. Plan Out The Time

Weddings can get very hectic with all the festivities and celebrations. Because of this, getting very specific group photos can be the hardest part of the day.  When should you have the pictures done? It’s easier to get everyone together before the ceremony, so we recommend doing it then, maybe after your first look.

If you’re not doing a first look it’s most common to get the Family formals done right after the ceremony – before everyone scatters. However – keep in mind that you will most likely have to miss out on a large part of your cocktail hour if you’re busy doing photos at the same time.

Also, be sure to TELL everyone who you want to be in photos when and where they are expected to show up so that they know what’s expected of them!

4. Remember It’s Your Day

It’s your special day, and your photographer ultimately wants to take photos that will make you look back on it and smile.

If you want a photo posed in a certain way, go ahead and do it! You don’t need the bride’s side of the family on her side and the groom’s on his if you don’t want it that way. There are no inflexible rules for wedding photography. The only requirement is that the photos mean something to you. They are your photos and you can do what YOU want!