How much time should we set aside for portraits on our wedding day?
•   a minimum of 1½ - 2 hours for Getting Ready Photos
•   a minimum of 30 minutes for Family Photos
(this accounts only for Immediate Family)
•   a minimum of 1½ hours for Wedding Party & Couple Photos

The "work backwards concept" for deciding how many hours you need...
start with the question: when will my Ceremony be?

If you know when your ceremony will be - consider that we would like to be with you for at least 2 hours before the Ceremony.  A minimum of 1.5 hours for Getting Ready photos + a buffer of a 30 minutes to travel to your Ceremony site = 2 hours. Start here and build forward to ensure that we will be present for your dances and special evening moments!

For example: 
Ceremony is scheduled for 2:00pm,
which would mean we would arrive at 12:00pm or earlier. 
If your dinner is scheduled for 7:30pm,
with a dance to follow starting at 9pm,
then it makes sense to choose the 10 hour Collection, bringing you to 10:00pm.
= 10 hours

•   We can absolutely arrange additional hours to Collections  (ie 11 hours instead of 10)
•  Keep in mind that we would happily photograph you in the morning for much longer, but generally can work with 2 hours
•  We can help you build the timeline if you need help!

let's break down the day

Bridesmaids' hair: 30 minutes per person.
Bridesmaids' makeup: 45 minutes per person.
Bride's hair: One hour. Run this by your hair stylist and have them confirm a maximum time.
Bride's makeup: 45 to 60 minutes, depending on the makeup style. ** Makeup always seems to run overtime. **
Hair & Makeup order: When your hairstylist arrives, have her start on your bridesmaids first so the bride looks the freshest. Instead, the bride should start with makeup.

When should we, the photographers, arrive? At least 1.5-2 hours before the bride is ready to go. This gives us plenty of time to capture the details — gown, shoes, jewelry, etc. — in addition to the hustle and bustle of the room, and the often emotional interactions between the bride and her bridesmaids! 

If you're traveling to a salon, double the travel time you anticipate — better to have too much time than not enough!

Put on your veil after the dress. Consider asking your stylist to stick around until then to make sure your veil is secure. 

First look: 15-20 minutes.
If you did have a first look, you'll still want at least 30 minutes pre-reception for more Couple Portraits. 

Typical Ceremony length: 30 minutes. 

When do Family Photos: Happen These take place RIGHT after the Ceremony!

Time Needed for Family Photos: We are happy to accommodate whichever choice you make but keep in mind that having Aunts, Uncles & Cousins in your photos will extend your timeframe significantly as it is a larger number of people to find and coordinate.
Depending on the size of your families: Immediate Family Photos can be done in as little as 30 minutes whereas Extended Family Photos can take up to 45 minutes to an hour. If EXTENDED family is involved in photos, an announcement must be made by the Officiant at the end of Ceremony - families MUST be informed and STAY at Ceremony location.

Time Needed for Wedding Party & Portraits: a minimum of 1.5 hours for couple portraits + wedding party photos.

The best TIME of day for Bride & Groom Portraits:
We like to as shoot late in the day before dinner as possible to allow the sun to be softer and more complimentary. Ideal choice is in the last three hours before sunset depending on the time of year. Example: Please do not schedule your Couple Portraits for 2pm as the sun is too high. We know this isn't always possible on a wedding day, but consider that it can be very difficult to shoot your beautiful soft portraits mid day at 2pm when the sun is very high in the sky making harsh shadows... and usually the hottest time of day! Most weddings we shoot have a 3:30pm Ceremony with Family Photos and all Portraits happening between 4/4:30-6:30pm.

Dinner always lasts approximately 2 hours if speeches are peppered throughout the dinner.

Sunset Photos: We will scoot you outside during dinner for approximately 15 minutes to get some extra sunset photos!

First Dance: We love when the First Dance happens near the beginning of the reception so we are absolutely there to cover it!

Sparklers: We love sparklers! Let us know in advance if you'll be bringing some for a photo.

Dance: We like to be there for at least an hour of dancing!

Tip: The best way to save time taking photos is by being prepared - that goes for your wedding party as well! Try not to leave preparations to the day before or Morning of your wedding - it will help! 



1) Style Me Pretty | 5 Tips for Stress-Free Planning

2) Hey Gorgeous Events | Timeline Skeletons:
1. Wedding Day Timeline Skeleton
Wedding Day Timeline (with First Look) Skeleton
3. Hour by Hour Timeline Skeleton

3) A Practical Wedding | Wedding Planning Spreadsheets

4) 40 Weeks to Wedding | Wedding Day Guide