Creating joyful wedding day images all starts with a well constructed Wedding Photography Timeline! This can seem daunting at first, but the first couple of steps are very simple. Once you have your date set, you can get going with these 3 simple steps to creating a timeline for dreamy wedding images! Here’s a short video I did on Instagram explaining these steps!
Without further ado, here are the FIRST steps you need to do to plan your wedding day photography timeline:
#1 Figure out when the sun will be setting.
When it comes to creating a photography timeline, the first thing you’ll need to do is check what time the sun will be setting.
This is the website I typically use to check sunrise and sunset times: Time and Date
In the summer, that could be around 8 PM, but in the winter it could be as early as 5 PM! Natural light allows for dreamy, natural looking photos, so make sure you have enough time in your schedule to get everything done beforehand. If your ceremony time is as late as 4 PM in the winter, you won’t have any natural light to work with afterwards!
#2 Discuss whether or not you’d like to do a first look.
A “first look” is when the Bride and Groom see each other before their ceremony, and it is the sweetest time. It may seem a bit untraditional, but when my husband and I got married, this was our favorite 20 minutes of the whole day! It allowed us time to share things we didn’t want to share in front of 250 guests, it eased our nerves, and we also have the most JOYFUL images from that time. Getting to enjoy my husband’s reaction seeing me for the first time was such a precious thing we didn’t want to share with everyone else – and it even sweetened the moment when I walked down the aisle!
Doing a first look also allows you to take Bride and Groom portraits, Bridal Party portraits, and Family portraits all before the ceremony takes place! This way, you can enjoy cocktail hour with your guests instead of spending an hour and a half taking photos.
#3 Confirm your Ceremony and Reception start times.
This item on the list should definitely be taken care after steps one and two! If you send out invitations saying your ceremony time is at 4 PM but the sun sets at 5 PM, you won’t have any time to take photos afterwards if you decide not to do a first look. In contrast, if you do want to do a first look, you won’t need 2 hours between the end of your ceremony and the beginning of your reception.