Your wedding day is one that you’ll always remember. After spending months, maybe years, planning – everything now needs to go off without a hitch. Your wedding photos are so important because that’s how you’ll remember this day for years to come. It’s helpful to plan these shots ahead of time to avoid added stress on your big day.

Discuss the moments that you want to capture most with your photographer.  If there’s a particular style or pose that you have in mind, elaborate on this. Having that conversation will not only help put you at ease but will also ensure your photographer understands what shots are most important to you.

To make planning more manageable, we’ve put together an outline for the quintessential wedding day shots. Expert opinions vary on which ones are key and which ones to leave out, but this gives you an all-encompassing view of the best wedding day shots. You can always expand on the details that matter most to you.

For Wedding Photos, It’s All About the Details

Among the most important shots you want to have recorded forever are: 

  • Wedding rings 
  • Invitations, wedding program, & gifts 
  • Wedding dress & suit 
  • Bridesmaid dresses & groomsmen suits 
  • Accessories – jewelry, shoes, cufflinks, & pocket-handkerchiefs

With so much excitement happening on the big day, it’s easy to neglect these ideas. But the details matter! When you’re looking back on this day years down the road, wouldn’t it be nice to have these reminders of all the magic that went into making your wedding day so extraordinary?

Which Photos Best Capture Preparations on Your Wedding Day?

You want photos of you and members of your party getting ready on your wedding day. Important shots that you definitely want to consider include: 

  • Bride with the bridal party getting their hair & makeup done 
  • Groom with groomsmen getting ready 
  • Wedding party altogether (photos that can be silly & serious) 
  • Portraits of the mother & father of the bride/groom 
  • Group shots of family with the bride/groom

You can have a lot of fun taking these with your wedding party! They’re like the “behind-the-scenes” photos that show all the excitement as everyone waits in anticipation for the show to begin.  

Important Photos Before the Wedding Ceremony Starts

Before the ceremony begins, some important photos to take include: 

  • Bride(s) with bridesmaids & flower girls 
  • Groom(s) with groomsmen & ring bearer 
  • Bride waiting to walk down the aisle

 A trend that we’ve seen grow increasingly popular for this particular time of the wedding is a “First Look” shoot — intimate photos of the bride and groom seeing each other for the first time in their full wedding attire before walking down the aisle. Some prefer that “first look” to be at the altar, but others want this moment to be shared privately.

Which Photos Should You Take During the Ceremony?

Once the wedding begins, be sure your photographer gets: 

  • Shots of the venue with decorations & flowers 
  • Groom waiting with groomsmen inside the venue 
  • Guests waiting inside the venue 
  • Bride entering the venue with father/mother 
  • Father/mother giving the bride away 
  • Exchanging of vows 
  • Exchanging of rings 
  • “You may now kiss the bride” shot 
  • Reactions after the first kiss 
  • Couple walking back up the aisle (the recessional) 
  • Celebrating with confetti/peanut throwing 
  • The signing of the marriage certificate  

These photos will be some of the most intimate of your wedding day. They capture those loving looks and knowing smiles between you and forever-partner. And who doesn’t love the first-kiss shot after “you may now kiss the bride”?   

What Are Important Group Portraits on Your Wedding Day?

Before the reception and after the ceremony, these group portraits are ones you don’t want to skip: 

  • Married couple with bridesmaids/groomsmen 
  • Married couple with the full wedding party 
  • Bride(s) with bridesmaids/maid of honor 
  • Groom(s) with groomsmen/best man  
  • Married couple together with any children 
  • Married couple together with each set of parents 
  • Married couple together with siblings 
  • Married couple together with close family/friends

After saying, “I do,” we know you’re ready to celebrate! But you’ll want to look your best for these group portraits that last a lifetime. The drinks, dinner, and cake will all be there waiting until you’re ready. 

Photos to Take During Your Wedding Reception

Be sure your photographer captures these fun and priceless moments at the celebration after the ceremony:  

  • Shots of the venue, décor, tables, centerpieces, & place cards 
  • Married couple’s grand entrance 
  • First dance as a married couple 
  • Dance with the father of the bride(s)/mother of the groom(s) 
  • Couple dancing with guests 
  • Cutting the wedding cake 
  • Toasts & speeches 
  • Guests mingling 
  • Entertainment musicians/DJ/singers 
  • Grand exit

We especially enjoy a good “cutting the cake” shot with the traditional cake-in-face that follows! If you plan on pulling this “cake-smash” move, share that with your photographer so they’re ready to capture the whole thing! 

Start Planning Your Wedding in Central Jersey Today!

On your wedding day, you’re sure to have plenty of beautifully shot photos. Putting together a guideline for what matters most to you, however, can certainly be helpful! At Windows on the Water, our team of professional wedding planners can help with these details. With years of experience, we’ll take the pressure off you and design with you the wedding album of your dreams. Give us a call and start planning today!