Ahhh family photos…. Let’s be honest, AS FUN as this part of your wedding day is going to be, it’s a pain to plan!

Here’s a helpful little guide as well as my Standard Family Shot List to get you started.  Simply follow the guide below and add and subtract from the standard list to come up with your perfect list.  Remember, it doesn’t hurt to throw an extra shot in there so someone isn’t offended, but keeping the list short also means more time to PARTY! So balance is key.

Wedding Day Family Photo List Planning Guide:How to plan your family portrait photography list for your wedding day family photos
Here’s that standard family photo list.

Every family is different, so you’ll want to adjust it to fit your lovely family members, but it should make a great starting point!

Standard Family Shot List for Weddings
-Group photo with everyone attending

Grandparents (We do these first so they can go relax ASAP)

Bride’s grandparents
-Bride and Groom together with each couple
-Bride with each grandparent individually

Groom’s Grandparents
-Bride and Groom together with each couple
-Groom with each grandparent individually
-Bride and Groom with all of Bride’s immediate family(including siblings spouses, nieces, nephews, etc) + Grandparents
-Bride and Groom with all of Groom’s immediate family(including siblings spouses, nieces, nephews, etc) + Grandparents

Bride Side
-Bride and Groom with Bride’s parents
-Bride and Groom with Bride’s immediate family
-Bride and Groom with Bride’s siblings + their spouses
-Bride with Bride’s parents
-Bride with Bride’s mom
-Bride with Bride’s dad
-Bride with Bride’s siblings all together
-Bride with each sibling individually

Groom Side
-Bride and Groom with Groom’s parents
-Bride and Groom with Groom’s immediate family
-Bride and Groom with Groom’s siblings + their spouses
-Groom with Groom’s parents
-Groom with Groom’s mom
-Groom with Groom’s dad
-Groom with Groom’s siblings all together
-Groom with each sibling individually

 

Some other things to consider

Divorced parents-
It happens. Nearly every family has their awkward moments, but there’s no need for your wedding day portraits to be one of them!  Simply arrange for separate portraits with each parent, or discuss with them (AND YOUR PHOTOGRAPHER) the situation beforehand.  Most of the time these situations are a big piece-of-cake so no worries!

Mobility-
We do grandparents & extended family portraits first – this goes a long way towards letting those with mobility issues go back to relaxing ASAP.  If anyone in your family or group needs special accommodations for the portraits, please don’t hesitate to let us know beforehand!

Spreading the word-
Send word to everyone on the list when and where the portraits will take place on your wedding day.  Let them know to be fully dressed and ready, especially if this is happening before the ceremony.

A word about letting others dictate your wedding-
As with all things wedding-planning family and friends are bound to have big opinions on this.  If you’re struggling with a family member giving too much pressure around the family portraits, here’s some advice- Be kind, but firm.  Send along your finished list with a kind note letting them know that all other portraits will be taken by the 2nd shooter during the reception (we are SO happy to accommodate this!).

& of course some of my favorite wedding day family portraits-