Suggestions for formal group photographs for your wedding day

As a wedding photographer Edinburgh I can say formal group photographs are very important. People often say that their wedding day is one of the happiest days of their lives. The planning and preparations often takes months, sometimes years for one very special day. Photographs are one of the most important aspects of your wedding day. Wedding photos preserve your most cherished moments that you will look back on for many years to come. While it may come naturally to you, posing for photos can be somewhat of a challenge to others.  Posing with a group of people can be even more problematic. One person blinks, Grandma goes into a sneezing fit, your little niece refuses to stand up, etc. These are all very common mishaps when trying to get that perfect group shot. Fear not! Here are a few points to keep in mind when taking group photographs to increase your chances of capturing that frame-worthy shot.

groom holds bride

What you should keep in mind while taking group photographs in the wedding

1. Make a list of photographs

Plan! Plan! Plan! Planning ahead can make the group picture taking process more efficient, therefore saving time as well as the sanity of your guests. Before the wedding date approaches, meet with your photographer and make a list of all the photographs you wish to have. The photographer will then have time to imagine the scene and keep things moving along on the big day. Collect your favorite wedding photos from websites like Pinterest to give the photographer an idea of your style. The internet is full of wedding photo inspiration so there should be no shortage of ideas. Also, things you might want to include on your list are names of family members, and to which family they belong. You will have one list for the Bride and one for the Groom. When it comes time for the photographer to call one side of the family for a photo, he/she will be able to call out names, resulting in a more organized photo op.

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2. Inform your guests about formal group photographs in advance of Big Day

Another sure-fire way to avoid chaos on your big day is to inform guests ahead of time that they will be needed for photos. This creates less confusion and ensures everybody involved has ample preparation time.

3. Keep number of formal group photographs under control

Keeping the amount of shots your photographer takes to a reasonable amount also helps keep the guests calm. You don’t like smiling until your face hurts and neither do your guests. The longer the photo session takes, the less likely you are to get genuinely happy faces. An experienced photographer will know this and aim to get that perfect shot in the first few frames.

wedding guest formal photograph at Edinburgh castle

4. Delegate group photographs coordination to one of brides or bestmen

Electing one person to task with collecting all the required guests is another good piece of advice when organizing group photos. You could choose the Maid of Honor or even the Best Man. Having only one person in charge will keep things organized. If too many people are out searching for other guests, no one will be in the right location for the photos. This will save so much time and frustration.

5. Agree nice background for photographs with your photographer

Location. location. location. You and your photographer should scout out different backdrops to setup formal group photographs. The photographer should be somewhat familiar with the layout of the venue from a pre-wedding tour or photos online. Discuss with him/her the best places to take certain photos, such as in front of a water fountain or at the top of a grand staircase. Deciding this ahead of time will give the photographer time to figure out lighting and poses. If your wedding photos take you outside on the streets of Edinburgh, you should account for other people being inadvertently in your photos. This is all helpful so that you are not taking too much time away from your guests by running around looking for spots for your photos. This is also a good time to take out the ideas you found on the internet and recreate some of your dream wedding photos.

6. Enjoy (be relaxed)

Last but not least, relax! Stay calm and just enjoy the day. Your wedding will go by so fast so it is especially important to stay in the moment and enjoy every second. Remember to take deep breaths and let go of the small mishaps that are bound to happen.

21 bride and groom with guests

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