Want stress-free and painless family photos for your wedding? Read below to get my best tips!:

Keep everyone up to speed.

Let family members know they’ll be in photos and when. Be sure to be very clear on who is needed and at what time!

Have a game plan.

Start with any elderly and children and then work from largest groups to smallest groups. Peeling people back in layers allows people to be dismissed and go enjoy cocktail hour.

Plan out your important formal shots.

Think about if you *need* the shot at the ceremony or if you can do a less formal one at the reception. Maybe you don’t have time for a photo op with all of your cousins after the ceremony, so indicate you want it at the reception!

Have enough time.

If we’re too rushed, there is no speeding things up and we’ll have to trust nothing goes wrong, like your wedding starting late or guests not leaving the ceremony area quickly enough so you can go into photos. You need AT LEAST 30 minutes for family formals (45 if they are extremely scatterbrained and you know they will wander), 30 minutes for the bridal party, and 30 minutes for photos of the two of you.

Have a people wrangler

Have one person from each side of the family (that isn’t a crucial person for photos) that can help corral people quicker. We’ll talk as loud as we can and organize whoever comes up to the front area, but we won’t specifically recognize that Uncle Joe is still standing in the back chatting with an old neighbor.

Think about the location of your ceremony

Think about the location of your ceremony in relation to the groupings. Small church? It’s going to be hard to get a large wedding party or large family grouping on the 2 steps they have. You want to make sure the number of guests in the photo can actually work given the amount of space.

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