Timing & all that stuff...

Obviously your wedding is individual and unique and you'll need to figure out your timeline based on your own priorities and situation! This info is just a guide to get you started - based on the bunches of weddings I've been to and just to help you out along the way! I'm of course MORE than happy to help you figure out your timeline individually - just email anytime!


1) Lighting - yeah, I know, all photographers ever bang on about is light! But in all seriousness, did you know that the meaning of photography is literally derived from 'painting with light' - so it makes sense that its kinda ridiculously important to us! The best time for your portraits to happen is golden hour (the time just before and on sunset) - but obviously this isn't always necessarily practical (i.e. summer weddings!). So what I usually suggest is that you allow a little time during that space between the ceremony and reception, but if you can, a little snippet of time during the reception to duck out and grab a few pics is always a great plan. Even if your venue doesn't have a great aspect for sunset, the light outdoors at that time is 100 times softer than earlier in the day and is still worth capturing!


2) How long do you need for stuff? This is again, dependant on you guys and your priorities but generally speaking, allow 20 mins after the ceremony for congrats before you even attempt to do anything else. Following that, family photos of up to about 10 groupings will take around 15-30 mins. Bridal party photos? If you've allowed time during getting ready (i.e. you aim to be ready an hour or so pre ceremony) then we can do a bunch then and you'll only need about 30 mins if you are on the same venue/site. If you have a large bridal party (any more than 3 each) then allow 45 mins for bridal party photos. If your ceremony is slated for 3pm, always factor in an extra 20 mins or so for last minute dramas/late people/bus getting lost etc if you've got a really tight schedule post ceremony, I've seen the whole thing fall apart due to everything being pushed back. After giving you all those specific flexible! Hahaha. Seriously though - the only thing you can really control on your day is your attitude and how you roll with the punches if things go wrong. If you have multiple locations for bridal party and portraits you need to allow double the time.


3) When should the photographer start and/or finish? This is definitely something you don't need to figure out exactly until the month or so before your day, but if you are trying to figure out packages/hours then some general rules of thumbs are if you want bride + groom prep shots, allow 30 mins for groom and an hour for bride. Make sure you factor in travel time for everything/everyone and I would also never arrive at a ceremony less than 20 mins before it was due to start to be able to shoot details/guests/assess the light and meet the celebrant etc. Finishing time? If you want dancing pics, allow about 30-45 mins after the formalities are due to conclude to be able to still get some dance action even if things run a little late. Any more than 30 mins or so of dancing is overkill, unless thats your main focus of the coverage (which I've had before and is totally fine!). When you have a second shooter, you shouldn't need more than 8 hours coverage, as they can cover the groom prep/arrive at the ceremony early etc.


Sample Winter Timeline (8 hour wedding)

12:30pm Photographer arrives

12:45 Groom prep

1:30 Bride prep

2:30 Ceremony

3:15 Family Photos

3:45 Bridal Party Pics

4:45 Portraits

5:30 Sunset

6pm Reception

6:45 Speeches

7:30 Cake + First Dance + Dance Party

8:30 Photographer finishes



Sample Summer Timeline (10 hour wedding)

1pm Photographer arrives

1:30 Groom prep

2:15 Bride prep

3:30 Ceremony

4:15 Family Photos

4:45 Bridal Party Pics

6pm Rejoin guests for canapes

6:30 Reception Commences

7:30 duck out for sunset photos

7:50 Speeches (set 1)

8:30 Dessert

8:45 Speeches (set 2)

9:30 Cake + Dance

10pm Dance party

11pm Photographer finishes