Formal Group Photographs On Your Big Day!
The other day, a prospective client asked me if I did formal group photographs, as she couldn’t see any in my portfolio. I was shocked that she thought I didn’t photograph these. But of course. How would she know?! I forget that just because I do something almost every day, doesn’t mean that other people know exactly what will happen and what I will photograph on their big day.
I try to include as many things as possible in terms of giving information in consultations and e-mail conversations. Sometimes it may even bit a bit of information overload. My policy is that I’d rather you have too much information than not enough! Despite this, there are still often small things that aren’t mentioned or forgotten.
My approach to group photographs on your big day!
Those all important group portraits are one of many aspects we as photographers focus on during a wedding day. And every photographer has a way of working and taking those oh so special shots. Whether it be specialising in documentary photography where little to no formal group portraits are taken – just natural images throughout the day. Or whether the whole day is mostly posed and set up (apart from certain events like the speeches and ceremony and cake cutting), I like to consider my style a bit of in between.
As a wedding photographer myself, I’m all about beautiful details and a naturally posed style. I love capturing a mixture of natural candid images, gently posed couple portraits and a handful of immediate family portraits to make a stunning and curated wedding gallery at the end.
Something I stress to all my couples is that I love to give you time to be with your guests and enjoy your day (so I can capture that!) but also so you don’t feel constantly rushed and like you’ve spent the whole day standing in front of the camera.
Many times after delivering wedding galleries I get ‘oh gosh. When was this taken?’ or ‘I didn’t even see you take this!’. This is one of the things I love, surprising you with photographs you don’t even realise were taken!
Okay, so what group portraits do you do?
As a guideline, I always tell my couples to have the group portraits taken that you’re likely to put in a frame or in an album. During the day itself I will go round snapping those lovely natural moments of guests laughing, children playing, the details of the venue and those amazing couple portraits. And think about it, if most of the time is spent taking group portraits, you won’t get as much of those other lovely aspects I love to photograph.
Don’t get me wrong, if you want a more traditional style with lots of formal portraits, then you will find some incredible photographers who specialise in just that. I can do lots and lots of formal group portraits, I just feel you wouldn’t be getting the best of me and what I can bring to your wedding day!
There is absolutely no firm limit on what formal group photographs you should have. It all depends on you both and what you want from your big day and this is something I will discuss with you in our catch up meeting. If you’re wondering what the typical list of group portraits I do is, feel free to nose below (it’s probably more than you think anyway!):
- Bride & Parents
- Bride & Bridesmaids
- Groom & Parents
- Groom & Groomsmen
- Bride, Groom & Both Parents
- Bride, Groom & Bride’s Immediate Family (Parents & Siblings)
- Bride, Groom & Groom’s Immediate Family
- Bride, Groom & Grandparents
- Bride, Groom & Bridal Party
What if I want lots of group portraits and natural images?
Just because I suggest something doesn’t mean you have to do it! I’m as much about delivering a solid style as I am about ensuring my couples are happy. Every wedding is different and every couple wants things others may not. Something I would suggest if you’re wanting both lots of group portraits and lots of natural images is two photographers! This really does give you the best of both worlds.
To see some full weddings head over to the blog to see the beautiful mix of image you’ll get from booking your wedding photography with me. Click here to see the lovely Natalie & Jason’s big day at Gaynes Park.
Venue credit: Lusty Glaze