Group Photographs at your Wedding, Top tips for your Group Photo List

I have photographed hundreds and hundreds of weddings since I started as a wedding photographer in Somerset, Bath and then throughout Europe well over 20 yrs ago.

When I began film was still the main format as digital was still very new, therefore as a photographer one had to be very selective when photographing the group wedding photos.

Since then obviously digital is now all the rage, literally thousands of images are taken and uploaded to social media ever second, it’s become very much a throwaway society when it comes to photography partly due to the ease but also because there are no costs to taking a photo and viewing this instantly!

A question that is asked of me very often by my clients is about the Group wedding photographs and what to choose, who should be included and how many groups should be taken?

Firstly let me explain how I work; I want to capture as much of the natural life at your wedding as possible, natural wedding photography is my preferred style, in my experience this is the perfect way to capture real emotion for you at your wedding, working in a very relaxed and unobtrusive manner, blending in with all that’s happening, capturing the smiles etc.

So why do I suggest having no more than 5 Groups?

Well; let’s just say that everything runs smoothly and perfectly to plan, it’s a beautiful day, the weather is perfect and your ceremony is at 14:00PM.

The ceremony is a church ceremony and this takes approximately 45min, you step outside the Church into a glorious summer day, your Family and guests begin filtering out of the church, the smiles and laughter begins, all your Friends and family naturally wish to congratulate you both, lots of hugs and kisses, friends chatting, Family talking to members they haven’t had the opportunity to speak to for a while etc.

It’s now approximately 15:00PM, several of your guests have confetti so we want to setup a beautiful confetti shot, with the help of your grooms men we start to organise a confetti photo.

Everyone wonderfully takes their place for the photo and the photo is taken, then it’s off to the venue which is just 5 mins away!

We arrive at the venue and every guest has arrived, absolutely no one has become lost, stopped off to check into their room or maybe continued chatting at the Church!

So let’s say it’s now 15:15; the best photo to take first is the Main group Photo where everyone is included so no one has disappeared and everyone is attending ready for the photo, perfect, photo taken.

Then we begin the group photos; should you accept my experience and go with the 5 groups and everything runs perfectly this can be completed very quickly however even with only this limited number of photos it can take 20 minutes to organise.

The time is now 15:40; perfect weather, perfect timing, everyone attending!

It’s now time for your photos, which are so important, we work in a very relaxed way so you feel completely at eased and never rushed and can usually complete these for you in about 20 minutes this is always ensuring your wishes are provided for. (You may wish for longer therefore its imperative you set timings with your venue to allow for this)

The time is now 16:00; if you’re sitting down to for your wedding breakfast at approximately 17:00 the venue will begin asking your guests to start making their way into the reception room at about 16:40, ready to announce you into the room, (This would be without a receiving line, which can take 20 minutes depending on how many guest you have) to begin your wedding breakfast.

This is just to provide you with an idea as to how quickly time moves on during the day.

The most important thing to remember is “it’s your wedding day”; you want to spend as much time as possible with your family, Friends and enjoying the most special day of your life, as your wedding photographer, I also want you to remember your day through the images we capture, not because you spent most of your valuable time with me! I want to capture those memories for you however providing my service for you in a discreet and enjoyable way for all. You can check out a latest blog post from one of my Blogs on our home page on Group Photography when taken indoors which provides you with some more information.

The brief explanation is naturally being over critical with regard to timings however it is to hopefully provide you as to why I suggest limiting your group wedding photographs to a minimum.

We naturally, take photographs of Bride with Father, Bridesmaids with Bride and Groom with Grooms men, signing of the register, ceremony and hundreds of reportage photos, when I write about Groups, I am talking about Uncle Tom with Aunty June and Bride, then Uncle Tom, Aunty June with Groom then Uncle Tom, Aunty June with Bride & Groom etc. (Apologies if you have an Uncle Tom or Aunty June)

I want you to remember your wedding day not the wedding photographer;

I promise you that once you receive your photographs, you will be absolutely thrilled and that’s when I want to be remembered.