Forms, Reminders, and Happy Hearts.
your wedding day is coming...!
I like to send all of the forms/information I will need from my clients in an email, but I know it is often easier to go back to one spot to get all of the goods, so I have included the information here, as well. I suggest not leaving this until wedding week because you will be doing enough + it doesn't give me enough time to give feedback or really get a good sense of your day. Also remember--you don't have to fill out the extremely long form I have created here online--I just need this information, so whatever is easiest for you, works for me. You do YOU. As always, I am able to talk any of this through with you at any point, should you need any help. <3 Here is what I need:
TIMELINE // with photographer cues, such as: which photos are happening and where, when I arrive, dinner, portraits, and when I am contracted to leave, special events or notes, etc. If you are just sending details to your coordinator, here is the quick cheat sheet of the "events" I need time on. You should just be able to copy and paste this list to send their direction.
- PHOTOGRAPHER ARRIVAL
- FINAL TOUCHES GIRLS HMU
- SMALL DETAILS
- BRIDE GETS DRESS
- DAD SEES BRIDE
- BRIDESMAIDS PHOTOS
- CEREMONY DETAILS
- GROOMSMEN ARRIVAL
- GROOMSMEN PHOTOS
- COCKTAIL HOUR
- FORMAL FAMILY PHOTOS
- FULL WEDDING PARTY
- BRIDE AND GROOM CREATIVES
- GRAND ENTRANCE
- SPECIAL DANCES
- WELCOME PRAYER/TOAST
- DINNER SERVICE BEGINS
- PHOTOGRAPHERS EAT
- OFFICIAL SUNSET
- SUNSET PHOTOS (5-10M)
- CAKE CUTTING
- OPEN DANCE FLOOR
- BOUQUET + GARTER TOSS
- BRIDE AND GROOM EXIT
- PHOTOGRAPHER EXIT
SHOTLIST // I don't need the whole day *at all*, but refer to the example so that you get an idea of what unique shots are (things I may not know about) and formal family combinations. Remember, the less, the better here. Your wedding is uniquely your wedding, and documented best when I have the most freedom to shoot and not be tied to a list. But I do like to know what is important to you, and what your photo priorities are.
VENDOR LIST // I ask that you list the company/names/website and email contact of those who creatively or logistically contributed to your day that may benefit from photos, or a linked shout-out in the blog post. Think--florist, dress shop, hair and makeup, venue, etc.
Other than that, please read through a few reminders below for getting the best photos out of your wedding day:
Keep the light in mind when setting your schedule. Light is everything, so make sure you have abundant natural light when you are getting ready, if you have a first look, and as you are taking creatives with the bride and groom + formal portraits. About 30 minutes before actual sunset, the good light has fallen off. Natural light will vastly affect your wedding day photography.
Factor in travel time + some padding in your timeline. Walking to the car or getting loaded just takes time if you are traveling with bridesmaids + groomsmen. It is also far more likely someone in the group will forget something or need to turn back. If I am changing locations, I will also need to load and unload gear at each location, so make sure you account for that, as well. Also--putting on your dress may take a little longer than you expect. Or not! Haha. But better to have more time than too little.
Remember the details. When I arrive, I will likely snap a few quick shots and get with your MOH to help me gather all of the details. This includes (but isn't necessarily limited to) your shoes, bag, jewelry, a nice hand mirror, garters, ring, veil, bouquet, full invitation suite (envelopes, too + any other paper products or custom printing from the day), perfume, hair accessories, etc. A nice hanger for your dress(es, bridesmaids if we can find a spot to hang them all!) is also a great idea! If all of this is already together and in one place, I can get these shots a lot quicker without missing anything.
Family portraits take about 3-4 minutes per photo. Also, be sure to announce family photos both at the rehearsal dinner and then again have your officiant make an announcement to family right before he releases everyone asking that "Any family of the bride or groom please do not move and hang around so we can get photos done quickly and efficiently and get everyone to the party!" (or something like that!!)! <3
Designate your corrallers and let them know beforehand that they will be helping getting the next photos ready and gathering people. Have them be on the lookout for me, and I will hand them the list and have them get groups on deck and hunt people down before we are all standing there waiting to find one person. <3
Have your photographer eat when you do. It just makes sense, and no one wants photos of themselves eating! If that means cutting in the buffet line, or having a coordinator set up vendor plates in the back storeroom, it just ends up working out best. We normally prefer not to eat with your guests (we LOVE them, but it is so embarrassing because we totally stuff our faces and get back to work!), but somewhere close enough to the reception so we can keep an eye on what is going on.
Holla! If you, or your mom, or your dad, or the groom, or your college roommate want a photo specifically with any of the guests, just let me or my 2nd shooter know. I am happy to stop and snap because I can't always know everyone and who is special to you. I am there to photograph for you, so don't hesitate to speak up.
I love having time with just you and the groom at some point (sunset, anyone?!?!?) to snap some lovelies of you two alone. I will take 30 minutes if you let me, but the minimum I suggest would be 15 minutes. Regardless of when we schedule this time, I am going to snag you both for just 5 minutes at sunset to capture a quick few. I will pre-select the location and get it all set up, so you just step in and be cute married people.
- Your dress may get a little dirty during your creatives, and I ask brides to be okay with that. You did the aisle, dress did what it was supposed to do, and we will do what we can to keep it as clean as possible, but sometimes that train just has to be on the ground, and you just have to frolic through that field in order to get the shot! Let me know in advance if this sounds like some form of Asian waterboarding torture, or something.
Ask the DJ in advance to avoid pinpoint lasers all-together, if possible, but especially during first dances, cake cutting, and bouquet/garter toss or any other *events* at the reception.
Have the biggest blast you could ever imagine. Be in love with your HUBS, your life, the day, all the people that are there to celebrate you. Try not to sweat the small stuff because ultimately--you're getting yourself married!!! Drink in the day; breath in the deep love and significance of all that is happening, and smile. <3
Other than that, if you are wanting to complete the form online, simply visit the Client Resources tab (password: letmein), or click below to be linked directly to the form. NOTE: There is no saving halfway, so sit down when you can complete it in one sitting and you already have all of the information gathered.