How to create a wedding photography plan | Next Chapter Photography

How to create a wedding photography plan

Congratulations on your engagement to your favourite! You’ve mostly likely picked your venue and maybe still considering your wedding photographer (check out these tips on ‘Choosing your perfect wedding photographer’). Before locking down your timeline for the day you should consider creating a wedding photography plan or at least an idea of what photos you definitely would like captured on the day and talk these through with a photographer.

Here’s the top 5 things to think about for your wedding photography plan. Subscribe to our newsletter to keep up to date with posts, inspiration and offers and receive your guide on ‘The Best Time to take Wedding Photos’.

#1 Wedding Preparation Photography

The mother of the bride hugs her daughter, a moment caught during the wedding preparation photography Capturing the preparation on the day, the getting ready, the details, the ‘backstage’ isn’t always something people choose to do. However, this is a part of the story of your day, not only is it a good time to capture the details of the day that you’ve so carefully considered including the dress, the suit, the rings, it’s the time of day where the anticipation is building, where you’re having a beverage with your besties, where you take a breath, when your parents see you for the first time, when you open that gift from the one you’re about to marry. You may even choose to have a ‘first look’, read more about that here.

Wedding preparation photography can be of both parties and can be covered by one photographer, time and location permitting or otherwise two. I’m more than happy to help you work this one out so get in contact here for a chat.

 #2 Wedding Ceremony Photography

Little Bay Chapel Wedding is stunning for wedding ceremony photography however, a flash is required. Depending on where you are having your wedding ceremony, the photography may be restricted i.e. for some religious ceremonies.Will there be restrictions around when the photographer can shoot, from how close and will it be possible to use flash if required? Make sure to have this discussion with your venue and the person that will marry you and be sure to pass this information on to your photographer. You may also wish to consider an ‘unplugged wedding’ meaning restricting and potentially prohibiting your guests use of cameras or phones during the ceremony at least There are many reasons for this including flash interference and simply you not wanting to end up with photos of yours guests with a phone, ipad or camera covering their face. You want them to enjoy the day and for their reactions to be captured. Let’s face it, you hired a professional for a reason. Read more on ‘Why you should consider and unplugged wedding’ here.

#3 Wedding Family Portraits

Wedding Family Portraits can be done easily and quickly, the entire guest shot is always fun!Often my clients want the memories captured from their day to be natural, unposed or candid photography however, sometimes family members would like the official wedding family portraits. They probably won’t be the most memorable part of your day or the most spectacular photos, however, with a shot list and time in your wedding photography plan you can get through them quickly and smoothly, the easiest time being immediately after the ceremony whilst everyone is all in one place. I also advise clients to have a ‘helper’ someone that knows the key people in your life to help call on them as I work through the list. I’ve pulled together a checklist of the photos you may wish to cover for you to download here.

#4 Wedding Party Location Portraits

Wedding party portraits can be great funTaking time out with your favourite as a newly married couple may be the only time you get together to be alone on your day (note: photographer’s are invisible and therefore, don’t count). Understandably you want to share as much of your day with your friends and family as possible however, if you do want some ‘you time’ and relaxed ‘just married’ portraits it’s a good idea to do it immediately after the ceremony (and after the wedding family portraits if you do them). I have heard recently of some couples doing their location portraits before the ceremony so they don’t have time away from their guests, of course this is only ok if you don’t mind seeing each other before saying ‘I do’.

How long should you allow for wedding party portraits? One hour is a good time to allow if it’s just the two of you, perhaps an hour and a half if you’re bringing the wedding party (bridesmaids, groomsmen etc). This really depends on you and the outcome you are expecting, if you have to travel to the location, and the other priorities in your day. I am always happy to help advise on this one and how it can fit into your wedding photography plan.

#5 Wedding Reception Photography

Wedding reception photography can be one that's often missed, however, it's the time, due to lighting where a professional is definitely required if you don't want to miss a moment

Wedding receptions are the time to kick back and relax, fill your belly, have a drink, dance to your favourite tunes. It is also the time of speeches, sometimes lots of speeches; the good, the bad and the hilarious, the time for sharing stories and showing appreciation and love for and from the most important people in your life, it’s also time for cutting the cake, a first dance, more dancing, an exit. Yup, receptions have a habit of running away with the time but one of the biggest questions is, should I have a photographer there for all or part of the night? Well, this really depends on how much of the above you plan to have on your night, how much you want to capture those moments, those reactions, that embarrassing dancing. You may choose to hire a photographer until the end of the formalities before everyone lets loose, some prefer not to have this on camera, I say why not, you choose what to do with the evidence in the end, why miss a moment?


If you’d like to talk more about your wedding photography plan please get in contact.