Many of our brides and grooms have a similar question during consultations so today we thought we would take a little time to address it for those that may be wondering. How many hours should we schedule a photographer for during our wedding? We do not have a specific package that obligates our guests to choose more than they are going to need or less than they want. We do this because we want you to be able to choose the amount of time that suits your needs best. Every couple has different needs and puts priorities on different things during their day. We have a general timeline we send out to our guests that breaks down each portion of the day and they choose if they would like to add time to a specific segment or remove one entirely. It looks something like this.
Details, Preparations, and Special Moments
This portion of the day is spent getting detail shots of the venue, still shots of the cake and dress, the bridal party getting ready as well as the grooms party. We also like to give some time in here for special moments with family members of the wedding party with the bride or groom. Once the ceremony commences things tend to move fast so it is preferred during this time to get those shots in while there is time. This portion of the timeline will normally take 2-3 hours. If our bride and groom want a first look this would also be the time slots when we do that!! This is not only SUPER SWEET to photograph, but it actually saves so much time for after the ceremony so we don’t feel rushed capturing those awesome sunset photos!
Rest & Retouch
This is what you might call giving the bride and groom a break to relax from all the festivities. It is optimally used if a part of the day is running behind. Sorry grooms but you get picked on here, sometimes the men run late, or we have even seen the minister be behind in getting to the ceremony portion! Either way it helps to have some buffer for all the unexpected “what ifs” that almost always happen during the wedding day that can make everything get behind. This portion of the timeline we normally allocate 1 hour to maximum. (We will take this time to shoot ceremony decor that was not setup previously and guests as they arrive)
Ceremony, Bride & Groom, Parties
This is both of our favorite part of the wedding. Here is where we get to capture the happy couple making their special commitments to each other. Regardless of the style or culture, this is so much fun for us. Capturing these moments is the highest honor a photographer can have. After the ceremony is when the bride and groom are photographed for our favorite sunset pictures. Then photographed with the whole wedding party and family members. This portion of the timeline normally takes 45 min to an hour.
Lastly is the reception. We allot 2 hours to this portion, for a total amount of time spent of 8 hours. It all goes by so fast… it is incredible. Like previously mentioned, everyone has different needs so we will always modify times for specific things. This was just a general timeline we like to use. But we hope that this has given readers a better idea of what to expect on their special day. Here below are some of the images we took using that exact timeline a little over a week ago!!
Cheers and we hope you enjoyed reading!
P.S. If you scroll to the bottom you can get our sample timeline that we have used to help our bride and grooms know exactly what to expect on their wedding day. This timeline works so well with all weddings so have a peek ;)!!
Click below to get our REAL LIVE SAMPLE PDF of our timeline that has been tried and true with each wedding we do. Even last week when the minister was 30 minutes late…this one worked perfectly!!
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~April and Jason Sapp