How To Make The Most Of Your Formal Wedding Photos / Vlog

Ideas & Advice For Couples

Tips for making the most of your formal wedding portrait photos

Here is my very first Vlog! Gulp! These are my basic tips for your formal wedding photos (stay tuned for outtakes)!

I’m braving putting my mug out there (definitely not used to being this side of the camera) as I want to achieve two things:

  1. If you are considering booking your wedding photography with me, then I hope that my new series of Vlogs will help you get a sense of who I am and how I work. A bit like meeting me – you can see if I’m right for you, perhaps more easily than reading about me on my website.
  2. I would like to guide you through some of the essentials when thinking about your wedding photography. Hopefully, you’ll have a clearer understanding of how to weave photography into your big day and find out a bit more about what goes into producing your photographs.

In order to get the best photos from your wedding, you must plan and work closely with your wedding photographer. Be sure to discuss every element of your big day so you and your photographer can figure out how best to capture the shots that will be of lifelong value.

Kent life wedding

In my first video, I start with a few essential tips for making the most of your formal wedding photos, the posed ones that usually take place after the ceremony. Although some consider the formals rather awkward and unnatural, others feel they’d like the opportunity to have all their loved ones in a single photo, looking good and feeling happy. In any case, these are amongst the most requested shots, surprisingly even from couples who favour reportage/candid photography.

Whilst these are not usually renowned as the most creative of wedding photos, here’s why I suggest you do consider incorporating a few portraits of family and friends into your big day:

  • Everyone is together
  • Everyone has made a reasonable effort to look their best
  • Everyone is usually in a pretty happy mood
  • Everyone loves a record of family history

Here are my top tips for making these formal wedding photos work (you can totally just watch the Vlog now if reading isn’t your thing):

  • Plan – Sit down with your photographer prior to the wedding and make a shot list. Add names to this list if it will help speed up the process on the day. For practical purposes, keep this list to a minimum by widening the categories of each group shot (e.g. all the bride’s friends as opposed to uni friends, drinking pals and mummy mates, etc.)
  • Time – Allow roughly 5 minutes per group shot so that there is enough time for guests to be rallied and put into position. Factor in elements such as travel and meal times to ensure you allow enough time for these pictures to be taken.
  • Location – Decide whether these photos will happen at your ceremony or reception venue based on timings and accessibility for the guests in each group shot. Make sure people know not to rush off to the reception if you choose to have your photos at the church. Consider how best to keep guests comfortable during this time (e.g. drinks/food/entertainment).
  • Help – Designate someone, usually a groomsman or bridesmaid, to assist in gathering people in the next group shot. This saves time and creates a calmer, smoother flow to the process.
  • Clarify – Communication with your photographer is key. Write down your timings, locations and group shots list so that both you and your wedding photographer have clear expectations. Oh, and make sure you have a contingency plan and an agreed understanding of what to do should the weather be against you or your guest list suddenly changes.

These are just a few of the considerations I will discuss with you at our pre-wedding meeting. I want to make sure everything we plan is personal to you and your wedding!

Watch out for my next Vlog soon! If you have any questions or topics which you’d like me to cover in a Vlog or Blog post, please leave a comment.


Signature Sticker_large PNGHi!

I’m Kate Hennessy, a Kent Wedding Photographer travelling all over the South East (and beyond!) to capture people’s big day!

If you’d like to make an enquiry about booking your wedding photography with me, please send me an email with your date to see if I am available! Look forward to hearing all about your wedding!


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