Most weddings I photograph now have three people planning them. The bride, the mother and Pinterest. The bride has the ring, the mom has the checkbook, Pinterest has all of the ideas. I am totally okay with this on most levels. I listen to all parties involved to hear ideas and favorites regarding wedding portraiture. Unfortunately, the biggest idea contributor, Pinterest, doesn’t own a watch or a sundial.
My job is to tell you that you need TIME to take portraits. (this is where all of my dorky photography friends snicker at the pun I just made) I would be a bad wedding photographer if I said, “Why, yes, Mary, you CAN take all 45 of these Pinterest photographs right after your wedding!”.
Not true. Not even a little bit.
SO! What is the solution? TIME! I WANT to create the photographs of your Pinterest dreams and create a brand new one that you can proudly pin for others to pin and on and on. But I need time to do it. Here are a few tips for you brides out there on how to carve out time on your wedding day to allow for maximum portrait time:
- Be realistic. Get a realistic timeline drawn up and make sure that you tell everyone to be there 15 minutes before they are actually supposed to be there. No, it is not possible to have one make up artist work on 8 bridesmaids, 2 mothers and you in three hours. More on make up artists later…
- Don’t do it all yourself. I know that there are a MILLION projects and crafts that you can do to make your wedding day special. (that old rascal Pinterest!) However, your wedding day is not the day to start, continue or finish any of them. You need to enjoy your wedding day by being around family and friends, not surrounded by glue guns and mini chalkboards. Time spent on these projects eat into your portrait time and make you stressed out!
- Make up artists need time too. Make up artists are wonderful. They make my job easier in Photoshop. They are relaxing. However, you have to allow them time to do their work. Bank on double the time they tell you. Something might take longer, go wrong or have to be changed. Plus, if you get done early, you have time for that Starbucks you wanted. The sooner the makeup artists are done, the sooner bride and bridesmaids portraits can begin!
- Boys take forever. Grooms and groomsmen hit slo-mo when you tell them to get dressed. Seriously. And getting into a tuxedo is more complicated than most IKEA furniture I have put together. Account for this when you making your timeline.
- Have a list. Lists make me happy. I am not sure why some photographers don’t like them. Maybe it is because it is disturbing their art. Whatever. You forget Grandma in a portrait and you are going to be in a heap of trouble for your art. Make a list of portraits that you want taken right after the wedding or ask your photographer if they have one you can look at. This speeds up the post-wedding portrait time and gives more time to you and the groom for your portraits!
- Carve out time from the reception. A great concept I would love to take credit for, but I can’t. You want to get in your reception so the fun can start, but you want more amazing images. Set aside 15 minutes with your photographer to make that happen. If you do it before cake, people won’t leave. Trust me. Before the wedding, talk with your photographer about what images you want to utilize your time most efficiently.
Here are images from a super fun wedding I did at the Piazza in Colleyville. This couple took 15 minutes out of their reception and this is some of the many we took at that time. LOVE IT!