Taking time for family photos on your wedding day is extremely important, some people find going through the long list of family and close friends tiresome and irritating but i can promise you that these are the photos you will cherish for decades to come. There are lots of reasons why I personally feel family photos are really important on a wedding day. The first being it gives you a keep sake with the nearest and dearest to you that will last forever. Picture yourself 30 years from now talking to your grandchildren about your wedding and potentially even showing them you wedding photos. You’re telling a story about a family member that you actually have a decent photo with because you took the time to take one! The next biggest thing in my eyes is family photos show those closest to you they are valued. Your wedding day, I hate to say will fly by, the day goes so much quicker than you think it will which unfortunately means you wont get to spend as much time with everyone as you would hope. SO what i have seen time and time again is when a couple takes the time to have someone scheduled in apart of the family photos they feel so so so valued. I’ve seen aunts , grandparents, cousins and coworkers alike beam with pride and joy that they got to take a photo with the guest of honour. Take my word for it. Family photos don’t have to be a drag, if they are well organized and strategically planned out they can be extremely easy and efficient! Here are some times on how to do the seamlessly!
Tip #1 — Tell Everyone Early. tell everyone twice.
People have the worst memory and people have the worst listening skills when it comes to big events so telling people frequently is your best defence. Send out an email or whatever other form of communication you are using on your wedding day to let everyone who is in family photos know they are in said family photos. When people are told ahead of time, most of the time they kind of remember they are in them- which is where the tell them twice comes in. Family Photos are always best done directly after the ceremony - purely because you have a captive audience to give instructions to. So this is where we tell them twice . Have your officiant tell everyone that family photos are about to happen at X location and for those who have been told they are family photos to head on over. OVER communicate to reduce hunting people down.
Tip #2—have a wrangler.
This is almost not a tip but a non negotiable when it comes to seamless family photos. Have both the bride/groom find the most assertive person they know on each of their respective sides be a wrangler. This person needs to know your people and needs to have a voice. I will do my best making sure that I help direct who goes where but at the end of the day I can only read names off your list where as a wrangler knows who Aunt Jane is and what your sister’s husband who has wondered off looks like. Give them a copy of the list and make sure to take a photo with them too!
tip # 2 — choose a location close by.
When it comes to choosing a place to do these photos choose somewhere close by. The further people travel (even by foot) the longer they take and the more people with get lost and you’ll be hunting them down. Choose a neutral spot close to your ceremony site that is shaded. An easy shooting location makes for easy photos.