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10 WEDDING DAY TIPS FOR THE PERFECT WEDDING 2024:
FAMILY & GROUP PHOTOS
Take some advice from one of the best wedding photographers in Ireland right now...me!
Big group photos and family photos can be one of the stressful times of day, trying to get so many people organised in one place can be a pain and take time out of your special day. Here are some of my professional tips and tricks for couples to help make this part of your wedding day run as smoothly as possible. This is the only time of day that you may hear me giving orders (I'm usually super chill) to make sure your Dad stops messing, the pints are put away and all the kids say 'cheese!'
1. START BIG THEN GO SMALL
This is always my strategy if I can manage it. Start with the largest group photos of friends and family and then whittle it down to the most important ones; parents siblings etc. Depending on the venues I can try to get a photo of all the guests at a wedding from high above but I tend to do this later in the day. Some venues have a preferred spot and time for The Big group photo so be sure to ask your photographer and your venue if you'd like this too.
2. KIDS FIRST
This is best for small children, toddlers and babies; I usually try to get the younger children in group photos first as we have a shorter window for me to keep their attention. I love getting group photos of children on their own but it's best to do them early in the day.
3. MAKE A LIST
This list doesn't have to include every single combination of photos for the day, there's no need to include 'photo walking up the aisle' or 'picture of bouquet', they're totally standard shots that I'd be getting anyway. And you don't even need a list but if you have any specific family photos in mind, a list can be useful.
The main photos to include on your list are of any particular family combinations such as: photo with Mum,Dad and Brother, photo with Granny & Uncle etc. Also familis are complicated, so if there are people who don't want to be in the same photo just let me know beforehand, it wouldn't be the first time.
4. NOMINATE BOSSIEST FAMILY MEMBER OR FRIEND
People laugh when I say this but a name always comes to mind. I don't mean bossy in a bad way but someone who is good at taking charge. It's handy for me to have a name from each bride or groom of someone who can be my go-to person for the family photos. They round them up while I take the photos.
You can even give them your list to tick them off. It saves a lot of time.
5. TIME OF PHOTOS
When is the best time to take family photos on a wedding day?
The answer is; straight after the ceremony when everyone is hanging around together. I tell my new bossy friends to start rounding up family pretty quickly and to tell them where we'll be doing them. As I mention in my post about the perfect wedding day timeline I suggest that you consider not doing a receiving line and jump straight into family photos. This can save a lot of time on the big day.
6. LIMIT THE NUMBER OF GUESTS PRESENT
One tip that really helps with group wedding photos is to limit the number of guests around buy having them slightly away from the main crowd. This means there aren't as many distractions and they're less likely to disappear to the bar or take their time finishing a conversation with onlookers.
7. HOW LONG DO GROUP WEDDING PHOTOS TAKE?
Couples ask me this a lot and I have to answer; it all depends on the family. Some photographers take an hour for family photos but I tend to take about 20 minutes. If we manage to gather everyone in one place without losing anyone, I can be very fast. I put you two in the centre and swap out the family like a little conveyor belt. Done.
Where is the best location for group wedding photos on the big day?
Well, as a wedding photographer in Ireland I'm aware that the outdoors isn't always available but outdoors, with a smiplpe background and in the shade is the optimal type of place for your group photos. Indoors with a colourful wall or sofa can also look great but can get complicated for very large group photos.
9.GROUP PHOTOS WITH FRIENDS
These photos tend to be a bit more casual so I might do them throughout the reception or after the meal. You'll need a bit of a break after the more formal family photos but I'll be around for any group photos you'd like during the whole day.
10. THE SICILIAN WAY
I had the honour of photographing my friends wedding in Sicily a few years ago and they have this lovely tradition of the couple walking around the room and taking a photo with each table. This can also create some competition so it's a bit of craic.
Another trend at the moment if to out two chairs for the couple in the middle of the dance floor and anyone who wants a photo has to jump in, in rotation...also causing a fair bit of competition and laughs. I'd highly recommend.
TOP TEN WEDDING DAY TIPS FOR GROUP PHOTOS:
1.START BIG THEN GO SMALL
3.MAKE A LIST
4. NOMINATE BOSSY FRIEND
5.TIME OF PHOTOS
6.LIMIT NUMBER OF GUESTS
7.HOW LONG DO WEDDING PHOTOS TAKE?
9.PHOTOS WITH FRIENDS
10.THE SICILIAN WAY
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