As an Arkansas wedding photographer, of the most important questions we get asked during the process of planning weddings with our brides is, “How much time is needed for couples portraits?” On your wedding day, nothing is more important than those first images you take as husband and wife. Whether you’re doing a first look or sticking with tradition and not seeing one another before the wedding, it’s important that you plan enough time for your couples portraits. Here are our 3 tips for better couples portraits on your wedding day!
- Decide whether you’re doing a first look or your couples portraits after the ceremony. This is the first step in the planning process for photography on a wedding day as this one decision maps out the entire wedding day for us photographers.
- If you’re doing a first look, make sure and plan enough time to do your couples portraits, bridal party portraits and your family portraits all at the same time. (More on this in a minute)
- If you’re planning on taking your couples portraits after the ceremony, to cut down on the time that you’re making your guests wait to start on your reception, you’ll need two sets of photo times, portraits before the ceremony and portraits after the ceremony.
- Plan at least 45 minutes to 1 hour of time for just the two of you. If there’s one thing brides regret on a wedding day, it’s not spending enough time taking couples portraits. Sure, we can get a lot done in 10 minutes, but if we’re only given 10 minutes for couples portraits, chances are, you’re only going to end up with 5-7 different poses. We take multiple angles of each one, but to really create some variety, your photographer will jump up and down for an hour with just the two of you.
- If you’re planning a first look, tack on 15 minutes for that first look time. We like to give our couples a few extra minutes to spend time alone without the camera in their faces, as this is generally the ONLY alone time you’ll have until you leave.
- If you’re planning on seeing one another after the ceremony, plan entertainment for your guests at your reception while we take photos. Cocktail hour is a big hit while receptions get set up and couples take portraits.
- Communication. Communication can make or break your wedding day, 100%. Communication with your photographer is of the utmost importance – as a photographer, we need to know what your expectations and wishes are for your couple’s portrait time. If you’ve got a location in mind that you’d like to use or a special idea, we want to hear it so we can make sure we plan for it!
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