How to Get Perfect Wedding Group Photos

Your wedding group photos are one of the most important keepsakes of your day—a record of you and your new husband or wife with your wedding party and closest family and friends.

But without the right photographer behind the lens and good planning ahead of time, they can get pretty stressful. Even worse, you might miss a group shot you really wanted to capture.

In this guide, we’ll walk you step-by-step through how to get perfect wedding group photos and make the entire process run smoothly. By following these steps, you can ensure you don’t miss a single shot you want, get great portraits and candids, and make your group photo-taking fun for everyone involved.

Quick Takeaways

  • Ensure you don’t miss any important wedding group photos by making a list of the shots you want in advance.
  • Designate a helper to coordinate photo groups and help you stay organized with group photos throughout the day.
  • Both traditional group portraits and candid group photos are great keepsakes of your wedding day.
  • Choosing the right photographer is essential so you and your group feel comfortable and you’re on the same page about the kind of wedding group photos you want.
  • It’s best to build in ample time for taking group photos so you aren’t rushed.
  • Prep your VIP family and friends to know what’s expected of them for photos and what to expect from the process.

How to Get Perfect Wedding Group Photos: 7 Pro Tips

Make a List of Shots You Want

You can go into your wedding day prepared for group photos by making a quick list of shots you don’t want to miss. Start with the locations you want to include—for example, the church or a scenic outdoor area at your reception venue. Then, list out the people and combinations of people you want to capture.

Having a list in hand helps to keep you organized amidst the excitement and the business of the day, and it allows you to plan out an itinerary to make the photo-taking process less stressful. You can talk to your photographer about your list, too, so they can help you plan the best way to fit them all in.

Designate a Helper

You’re the star of the show on your wedding day—but you don’t have to be the director, too. Choose a reliable friend or family member to be your group photo coordinator. They can rally the troops, gather the right people for each shot, and help organize the process.

At Perennial, we take on this job for you so you don’t even have to worry about assigning it out. We’ll know your VIPs and go over your list closely ahead of time so we can keep the day moving smoothly without missing a single shot you want us to get.

All the while, you can focus on soaking in the joy of the day and staying present in the moment.

Don’t Ditch the Formal Portraits

Candid shots are all the rage right now, and it is true that they’re best for capturing the fun and spontaneous moments of your wedding day. But don’t toss aside the idea of formal portraits, either. You don’t have to choose one or the other. Traditional portraits stand the test of time and record all the special people in your life who are there for you at your wedding.

Dedicate some time for these visual heirlooms, showcasing your entire wedding party, family, and friends in a classic way.

. . . but Make it Fun, Too

But spending time on portraits doesn’t mean you can’t have some fun, too. If you’re looking for photos that capture the real, authentic feel of your day, consider hiring a documentary-style photographer. They’ll get photos of all the big moments throughout the day—happy, emotional, unexpected, hilarious, you name it.

That way, you don’t have to set aside time for “candids” that end up more posed than your portraits. The candids will be real—and you’ll have keepsakes from your day that show it exactly how it really was.

Choose the Right Photographer

Your wedding photographer is like the narrator of your love story. It’s important to find the right fit! Look for a photographer experienced in weddings and whose style resonates with you. Set up meetings to discuss your expectations and vision. Talk about how they handle group photos and what their process is for getting portraits and candids.

Most importantly, be sure you feel 100% comfortable with your photographer. If you do, the VIPs in your wedding group photos will too.

Build In Ample Time

It’s natural to want to squeeze photos into as small a time window as possible—after all, you want to have time to enjoy your wedding and reception. The thing is, wedding group photos do take time to capture, and you’ll be more stressed if you don’t build in enough time in advance.

Talk to your photographer about how long your wedding group photos will take based on the shot list you made in advance. Account for things like travel time and setup. Build in ample time in your itinerary to get them all done.

If you finish sooner, great. You can get to the next thing before you expected. But if not, you’ll already have the time blocked out and won’t be worried about your schedule for the day being thrown off.

Prep Your VIPs for What to Expect

Give your important people a heads-up about the photo schedule and what’s expected of them. Share the timing and location of the group photos and let them know what poses or themes you have in mind. This way, everyone’s in the loop and ready to shine when it’s their turn in front of the camera.

Final Thoughts

Your wedding group photos are one of the most important keepsakes from your day. They’re a record of you with the people you love most—your closest family and friends, and the ones you chose to play a special role in your wedding.

By planning ahead, choosing a wedding photographer you genuinely like and trust, getting a variety of traditional and candid shots, and prepping your people ahead of time, you can be sure you’ll get wedding group photos you love.

At Perennial, we’re pros at taking documentary-style photos that capture moments between you and your loved ones in their truest form (and we love great portraits, too!). To learn more about us or see if we’re the right fit for you, book a call with us today.

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