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The wedding timeline

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bride and groom

ideal timeline guide | sample first look timeline

PREPERATION

BRIDE PREPARATION (ALWAYS COVERED BY LEAD SHOOTER, UNLESS BRIDE/GROOM PLAN OTHERWISE)

start

 

06:00 AM
07:00 AM
09:00 AM
09:15 AM
09:30 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:45 AM

finish

 

08:00 AM
09:00 AM
09:15 AM
09:30 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:45 AM
11:00 AM

description

 

BRIDESMAIDS MAKEUP/HAIR/PREP
BRIDE MAKEUP/HAIR/PREP
BRIDE + BRIDESMAIDS ROBE SHOTS
BRIDESMAIDS STEP INTO DRESSES
BRIDE STEPS INTO DRESS (BRIDESMAIDS HELP)
BRIDE OPENS GROOM’S GIFT & LETTER
BRIDE SOLO PORTRAITS
BRIDE + BRIDESMAIDS ROOM PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Bridesmaids prep is a great time for fun candid/journalistic imagery of the girls getting ready and having a good time.
30 – 60 Minutes capturing all of the details, last 15 – 20 minutes shooting the bride’s hair/makeup images.
Robe shots with bride + bridesmaids all dolled up. Requires everyone ready with hair/makeup in robes.
Bridesmaids get fully prepped so they can help the bride get into her dress, and then take photos after.
Bridesmaids or family helps the bride to get into dress, photography generally starts after stepping into the dress.
Bride takes a moment to open the groom’s gift and letter. This can also be done in the robe after hair/makeup.
Solo portraits of the Bride focusing on her, the dress, details, hair and makeup.
Bride + Bridesmaids fun portraits in the room, jumping on bed, hanging out drinking champagne, etc.

GROOM PREPARATION (IF GROOM PREP IS HAPPENING AT SAME TIME AS THE BRIDE, 2ND SHOOTER COVERS THE GROOM)

start

 

08:30 AM
09:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM

finish

 

09:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:15 AM
11:00 AM

description

 

GROOM DETAIL PHOTOS
GROOM + GROOMSMEN PREP
GROOM OPENS BRIDE’S GIFT & LETTER
GROOM SOLO PORTRAITS
GROOM + GROOMSMEN PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Images of the groom’s shoes, suit, cufflinks, watch, and other details before getting ready.
Candid/journalistic imagery of the groom and groomsmen getting ready and having a good time.
Groom takes a moment to open the bride’s gift and letter. Generally done once dressed.
Solo portraits of the Groom focusing on him, his suit and details like cufflinks, watch, socks/shoes, etc.
Groom + Groomsmen take fun/candid portraits. Ideally out of the room at the bar toasting, or a nice area on property.

PRE CEREMONY PORTRAITS

start

 

11:00 AM
11:15 AM
11:30 AM
12:30 PM
01:45 PM
02:45 PM

finish

 

11:15 AM
11:30 AM
12:30 PM
01:45 PM
02:45 PM
03:15 PM

description

 

POSITION GROOM THEN BRIDE FOR FIRST LOOK
FIRST LOOK
COUPLES PORTRAITS
WEDDING PARTY GROUP & INDIVIDUAL SHOTS
FAMILY FORMALS
BRIDE/GROOM SEPARATE & FRESHEN UP

photography notes

 

Plan 10 – 15 minutes to get the couple into position. Actual first look is fairly short, usually around 5 minutes.
Allow the bride/groom time to talk and enjoy the moment. When completed, we start their couples portrait session.
Early photos session focused on capturing must have shots around the property.
Wedding party together, then just the girls, then just the boys. Individual shots w/ bride and groom if there is time.
Simple family portrait sessions can be 30 minutes, family portraits with all variations can last up to 1 hour. Have the formals list person guide and prep everyone for each image.
Separate the bride/groom, let them prep and allow the anticipation build again prior to the ceremony.

CEREMONY

start

 

03:30 PM
03:40 PM
04:20 PM
04:30 PM

finish

 

03:40 PM
04:20 PM
04:30 PM
04:45 PM

description

 

PROCESSIONAL
CEREMONY
RECESSIONAL
CLEAR GUESTS TO COCKTAIL HOUR

photography notes

 

Remember to remind everyone in the processional to look up and smile, don’t just walk and look at the ground.
For all activities, allow audience visibility. I.E. keep hands open for the ring exchange, pour sand facing the audience, etc. Hold important moments, like the first kiss for 2-3 seconds.
Great moment to be excited, half fun coming down the isle, pump your fists/flowers, at the end of the isle go for a dip or kiss, etc.
Allow 15 minutes for guests to be cleared before planning to start portraits, otherwise coming out too soon will end up in a “receiving line.”

POST CEREMONY PORTRAITS

start

 

04:45 PM
05:30 PM
06:00 PM

finish

 

05:30 PM
05:45 PM
06:30 PM

description

 

EXTENDED FAMILY PORTRAITS (ALTER)
WEDDING PARTY FORMALS (ALTER)
SUNSET COUPLES PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Family+extended family formal session, guided by person assigned to the formals list. Photographer will organize them into photos, just need everyone present and ready.
Wedding party formals shots on the alter before the alter gets broken down. Generally a shot of entire wedding party, just the girls and just the boys.
Golden hour (sunset) is the best time for the perfect light and pictures. The golden hour couples session is generally when the best “dramatic/landscape” imagery will be created.

COCKTAIL HOUR + RECEPTION

start

 

05:00 PM
06:30 PM
07:00 PM
07:15 PM
07:30 PM
08:00 PM
09:00 PM
09:15 PM
09:30 PM
10:00 PM
10:15 PM
12:00 AM

finish

 

06:30 PM
06:45 PM
07:15 PM
07:30 PM
08:00 PM
09:00 PM
09:15 PM
10:00 PM
10:00 PM
10:15 PM
12:00 AM
12:20 AM

description

 

COCKTAIL HOUR
GUESTS ENTER RECEPTION
FAMILY + WEDDING PARTY + COUPLE GRAND ENTRANCE
FIRST DANCE + FAMILY DANCES
TOASTS (DINNER SERVED)
RECEPTION PROGRAM CONTINUES
GARTER/BOUQUET TOSS
OPEN DANCING, BRIDE & GROOM JOIN
NIGHT TIME PORTRAIT SESSION
CAKE CUTTING, BRIDE AND GROOM TOAST
OPEN DANCING + DESSERT BAR OPENS + LATE NIGHT SNACKS
GRAND SPARKLER/FLOWER/CONFETTI EXIT

photography notes

 

The 2nd Shooter will cover the cocktail hour details and candids, then move to the ballroom to capture reception details.
Bride and groom return from their sunset portraits and line up. Photographers prepare lighting and gear for the grand entrance and reception.
The best shots captured once they get closer to the dance floor with guests surrounding, everyone should dance and celebrate all the way through the entrance, not just at the door.
Ideally start the first dance in the center of the dance floor for a dramatic wide image. Remember, the longer the dance, the better the expressions we can capture.
Ideally those giving toasts should stand close to the bride/groom’s table in order to capture the speaker and bride/groom within a single frame.
Photographers continue to shoot journalistically through the evening.
Photographer will setup best throw direction. Sometimes in darker environments, it’s great to do a “fake throw” just for the photo opportunity.
A large group shot with all of the guests, bride and groom + families/wedding party front and center is one of the best ways to get the dance floor started. 
Setup the first shot before pulling bride/groom. Make sure bride/groom are OK to leave. Considering the reception program, session can be 10 up to 30 minutes.
Bride/Groom cut cake. Again confirm with photographer for the best direction/placement. This is a great moment to go from cake into toasts as guests watch.
Continue with journalistic and artistic shots of everyone dancing. 2nd Shooter to capture dessert/snack bar details.
Allow 10 to 15 minutes to setup for the grand exit. Exit itself only takes a few minutes. Again pause at the end of the exit for a dip/kiss/etc. with everyone standing behind the couple.
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bride and groom

ideal timeline guide | sample traditional timeline (no first look)

PREPERATION

BRIDE PREPARATION (ALWAYS COVERED BY LEAD SHOOTER, UNLESS BRIDE/GROOM PLAN OTHERWISE)

start

 

06:00 AM
07:00 AM
09:00 AM
09:15 AM
09:30 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:45 AM

finish

 

08:00 AM
09:00 AM
09:15 AM
09:30 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:45 AM
11:00 AM

description

 

BRIDESMAIDS MAKEUP/HAIR/PREP
BRIDE MAKEUP/HAIR/PREP
BRIDE + BRIDESMAIDS ROBE SHOTS
BRIDESMAIDS STEP INTO DRESSES
BRIDE STEPS INTO DRESS (BRIDESMAIDS HELP)
BRIDE OPENS GROOM’S GIFT & LETTER
BRIDE SOLO PORTRAITS
BRIDE + BRIDESMAIDS ROOM PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Bridesmaids prep is a great time for fun candid/journalistic imagery of the girls getting ready and having a good time.
30 – 60 Minutes capturing all of the details, last 15 – 20 minutes shooting the bride’s hair/makeup images.
Robe shots with bride + bridesmaids all dolled up. Requires everyone ready with hair/makeup in robes.
Bridesmaids get fully prepped so they can help the bride get into her dress, and then take photos after.
Bridesmaids or family helps the bride to get into dress, photography generally starts after stepping into the dress.
Bride takes a moment to open the groom’s gift and letter. This can also be done in the robe after hair/makeup.
Solo portraits of the Bride focusing on her, the dress, details, hair and makeup.
Bride + Bridesmaids fun portraits in the room, jumping on bed, hanging out drinking champagne, etc.

GROOM PREPARATION (IF GROOM PREP IS HAPPENING AT SAME TIME AS THE BRIDE, 2ND SHOOTER COVERS THE GROOM)

start

 

08:30 AM
09:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM

finish

 

09:00 AM
10:00 AM
10:15 AM
10:15 AM
11:00 AM

description

 

GROOM DETAIL PHOTOS
GROOM + GROOMSMEN PREP
GROOM OPENS BRIDE’S GIFT & LETTER
GROOM SOLO PORTRAITS
GROOM + GROOMSMEN PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Images of the groom’s shoes, suit, cufflinks, watch, and other details before getting ready.
Candid/journalistic imagery of the groom and groomsmen getting ready and having a good time.
Groom takes a moment to open the bride’s gift and letter. Generally done once dressed.
Solo portraits of the Groom focusing on him, his suit and details like cufflinks, watch, socks/shoes, etc.
Groom + Groomsmen take fun/candid portraits. Ideally out of the room at the bar toasting, or a nice area on property.

PRE CEREMONY PORTRAITS

BRIDE + BRIDAL PARTY + FAMILY PORTRAITS (ALWAYS COVERED BY LEAD SHOOTER, UNLESS BRIDE/GROOM PLAN OTHERWISE)

start

 

11:15 AM
12:00 PM
12:45 PM

finish

 

11:45 AM
12:45 PM
03:15 PM

description

 

BRIDE + BRIDESMAIDS PORTRAITS ON PROPERTY
BRIDE + BRIDE’S FAMILY PORTRAITS
BRIDE RETURNS TO SUITE TO PREPARE FOR CEREMONY

photography notes

 

Portraits in location where groom won’t see. Portraits of the girls as a groom and portraits with bride and each girl individually.
Portraits in location where groom won’t see. Portraits of bride and family, individual portraits with parents, siblings, etc.
2nd Shooter to capture details of the ceremony site, then can return to shoot second angle with the Lead shooter, or can go with the bride while Lead shoots the Groom’s side.

GROOM + GROOMSMEN + FAMILY PORTRAITS (CAN OCCUR AT THE SAME TIME IN A DIFFERENT LOCATION COVERED BY THE 2ND SHOOTER, OCCURS HERE AT SEPARATE TIME SO LEAD SHOOTER CAN PHOTOGRAPH)

start

 

01:00 PM
02:00 PM
03:00 PM

finish

 

01:45 PM
02:45 PM
03:15 PM

description

 

GROOM + GROOMSMEN PORTRAITS ON PROPERTY
GROOM + GROOM’S FAMILY PORTRAITS
GROOM PREPARES FOR THE CEREMONY

photography notes

 

Portraits in location where bride won’t see. Portraits of the Groom and Groomsmen together, and portraits with the Groom and each Groomsmen individually.
Portraits in location where bride won’t see. Portraits of the Groom and family, individual portraits with the Groom with parents, siblings, etc.
Lead and Second Shooter prepare for ceremony processional.

CEREMONY

start

 

03:30 PM
03:40 PM
04:20 PM
04:30 PM

finish

 

03:40 PM
04:20 PM
04:30 PM
04:45 PM

description

 

PROCESSIONAL
CEREMONY
RECESSIONAL
CLEAR GUESTS TO COCKTAIL HOUR

photography notes

 

Remember to remind everyone in the processional to look up and smile, don’t just walk and look at the ground.
For all activities, allow audience visibility. I.E. keep hands open for the ring exchange, pour sand facing the audience, etc. Hold important moments, like the first kiss for 2-3 seconds.
Great moment to be excited, half fun coming down the isle, pump your fists/flowers, at the end of the isle go for a dip or kiss, etc.
Allow 15 minutes for guests to be cleared before planning to start portraits, otherwise coming out too soon will end up in a “receiving line.”

POST CEREMONY PORTRAITS

start

 

04:45 PM
05:30 PM
06:00 PM

finish

 

05:30 PM
05:45 PM
06:30 PM

description

 

EXTENDED FAMILY PORTRAITS (ALTER)
WEDDING PARTY FORMALS (ALTER)
SUNSET COUPLES PORTRAITS

photography notes

 

Family+extended family formal session, guided by person assigned to the formals list. Photographer will organize them into photos, just need everyone present and ready.
Wedding party formals shots on the alter before the alter gets broken down. Generally a shot of entire wedding party, just the girls and just the boys.
Golden hour (sunset) is the best time for the perfect light and pictures. The golden hour couples session is generally when the best “dramatic/landscape” imagery will be created.

COCKTAIL HOUR + RECEPTION

start

 

05:00 PM
06:30 PM
07:00 PM
07:15 PM
07:30 PM
08:00 PM
09:00 PM
09:15 PM
09:30 PM
10:00 PM
10:15 PM
12:00 AM

finish

 

06:30 PM
06:45 PM
07:15 PM
07:30 PM
08:00 PM
09:00 PM
09:15 PM
10:00 PM
10:00 PM
10:15 PM
12:00 AM
12:20 AM

description

 

COCKTAIL HOUR
GUESTS ENTER RECEPTION
FAMILY + WEDDING PARTY + COUPLE GRAND ENTRANCE
FIRST DANCE + FAMILY DANCES
TOASTS (DINNER SERVED)
RECEPTION PROGRAM CONTINUES
GARTER/BOUQUET TOSS
OPEN DANCING, BRIDE & GROOM JOIN
NIGHT TIME PORTRAIT SESSION
CAKE CUTTING, BRIDE AND GROOM TOAST
OPEN DANCING + DESSERT BAR OPENS + LATE NIGHT SNACKS
GRAND SPARKLER/FLOWER/CONFETTI EXIT

photography notes

 

The 2nd Shooter will cover the cocktail hour details and candids, then move to the ballroom to capture reception details.
Bride and groom return from their sunset portraits and line up. Photographers prepare lighting and gear for the grand entrance and reception.
The best shots captured once they get closer to the dance floor with guests surrounding, everyone should dance and celebrate all the way through the entrance, not just at the door.
Ideally start the first dance in the center of the dance floor for a dramatic wide image. Remember, the longer the dance, the better the expressions we can capture.
Ideally those giving toasts should stand close to the bride/groom’s table in order to capture the speaker and bride/groom within a single frame.
Photographers continue to shoot journalistically through the evening.
Photographer will setup best throw direction. Sometimes in darker environments, it’s great to do a “fake throw” just for the photo opportunity.
A large group shot with all of the guests, bride and groom + families/wedding party front and center is one of the best ways to get the dance floor started. 
Setup the first shot before pulling bride/groom. Make sure bride/groom are OK to leave. Considering the reception program, session can be 10 up to 30 minutes.
Bride/Groom cut cake. Again confirm with photographer for the best direction/placement. This is a great moment to go from cake into toasts as guests watch.
Continue with journalistic and artistic shots of everyone dancing. 2nd Shooter to capture dessert/snack bar details.
Allow 10 to 15 minutes to setup for the grand exit. Exit itself only takes a few minutes. Again pause at the end of the exit for a dip/kiss/etc. with everyone standing behind the couple.

LET’S TALK

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