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3 Wedding Timeline Tips You Should Know

In the last two articles we covered important questions to ask your photographer and preparing for your wedding images. Hopefully those two resources offered some help to you as you plan your wedding day. In this article we will tackle the all important timeline and why it is critical to ensuring you get the best possible wedding images from your photographer.

How many horror stories have we all heard about weddings that were riddled with scheduling and timing problems? They are a dime a dozen and most likely a result of a failure to properly plan for each portion of the day. We understand that accidents happen that are out of your control however by creating a timeline you give yourself ample time to deal with some or all of those wedding day surprises.

Here are some practical tips to follow when preparing your timeline:

#3 Write it Down
I know this sounds obvious but trust me it’s important because on your wedding day there will be so many details to handle and trying to remember each one is impossible. Writing it down also forces you to see where there might be scheduling or time conflicts. One area couples fail to plan for is travel time from the preparation to the ceremony location and from there to the reception. This is especially important if you are getting ready in a different part of town than your ceremony or reception. Writing it down also allows you to share it easily with everyone that needs to know - especially your photographer. Part of the task we undertake with our own couples is a timeline consultation where we invite the couple to our office to go over and plan the timeline with them. This helps us guide them in terms of how much time they should allocate for getting ready images, formal images, family images and more.

#2 Include Contact and Address Information
Your wedding day will be an amazing, beautiful, magical day filled with many emotions. The last thing you want to be doing is texting the photographer the phone number of the dj or calling the host at the reception venue to give her the florist’s name and phone number. That’s why it’s important to include everyone’s name, phone and email in your timeline as well as the name, address and phone number of all the venues including the church and reception hall or country club. Having this information with your timeline will reduce the number of times you have to pick up your phone to answer a question about a person or a place that is important to your wedding day.

#1 Pad your Time Allotments
If you think you will only need 30 minutes for hair add an extra 15. If you think you will only need 45 minutes for family images add another 20-30. Padding your time allotments will give you, your bridal party and everyone else involved time to get to and from the locations where the images will be taken, it will also give your photographer time to setup and test his/her equipment and it will provide a little extra time in case someone has to use the bathroom between portions of your day.

Creating a timeline that is written down, includes contact and address information and has padded time allotments will help in ensuring you give your photographer enough time to document all the portions of your big day. Can I give you a little inside secret about wedding photographers? We love weddings, we love the details, the excitement, the emotion and the people. We love the idea of documenting all those special little sentimental, romantic things that we see and encounter at weddings. Want to know another little secret? A little piece of us dies inside when we have to rush from place to place due to improper planning. Not because we are control freaks, but because it does not give us a chance to capture all those little things I just mentioned. When you create a good timeline you not only do it for yourself but also to help your photographer create the best possible images of the most important day of your life.

 

3 Ways to Prepare for your Wedding Photos

I hope last week's article was helpful in preparing for your wedding photographer interviews. Having a good set of questions is critical when choosing the right photographer to document such an important day for you.

This week we are going to give you some recommendations and ideas on how to practically prepare for your wedding photos.

#3. Make a list with your photographer.

Nowadays it is very common for brides to save their favorite image ideas for their wedding day on Pinterest. While this is helpful to the photographer to give them an idea of what kind of photography you like it is a little more challenging to use on the actual wedding day. One very effective way to make sure your photographer does not miss any of your must have images from your wedding is to create a wedding shot list. A wedding shot list consists of a variety of important or significant moments or items at most weddings. A good shot list will include a list for photos with family, of the wedding party and of all the special little details throughout the day. Most experienced photographers should have a shot list they can provide to you. We provide all of our brides a paper and electronic shot list they can submit to us which we will use on their wedding day, to make sure we do not miss anything. Have a look at a sample list we provide to our couples.

#2. Request an engagement session.

Engagement sessions are not only fun but are very useful as a way to practice for your wedding day. During the engagement session the photographer will be able to learn how you and your partner interact, your dynamic and any special little quirks to avoid on the wedding day. It is also a time for you and your partner to learn how your photographer communicates and what to expect on your wedding day. We love engagement sessions because it gives us time to work one-on-one with our couples in a relaxed environment and without being in a rush. During the session we like to experiment with creative ways to showcase their love and it gives us a chance to build a rapport with the couple. That rapport helps remove any of the awkwardness the couple might feel in front of the camera. Have a look at our engagement portfolio for some fun ideas of what is possible during this special photography experience.

#1. Relax and enjoy your day.

I know you're probably thinking, sure that's easier said than done. And trust me I know how crazy wedding days can get. But we believe you can find pockets in the day that will allow you to stop, breathe deeply and just take it all in. Why is this important for your wedding images? Because your wedding images will be much better if you look relaxed and like you are enjoying yourself. One thing we like to do with our brides to help them relax is to ask all the bridesmaids and helpers to leave her alone in the preparation room with us for a few minutes. Once everyone leaves the tension in the room is reduced significantly and we can then do a very quiet and intimate portrait session with her before she leaves for the ceremony. During that time my partner and I will reassure and help her to refocus on what's most important - her and her groom. This also allows us to create beautiful images of a relaxed and refreshed bride. So relax and enjoy your day - after all it is Your day.

We trust this week's article was helpful and insightful. If you have any questions related to getting ready for your wedding images feel free to contact us.

In the next installment we will be discussing Creating a Timeline for the Best Possible Wedding Images.

Irma + Tony's Love Story Engagement Session | Lehigh Valley Wedding Photographer

Today we spent some time with Irma and Tony creating some fun and romantic love story images at Lehigh Parkway. They were so amazing in every way - from their outfits, to their chemistry to their awesome smiles. We had a genuinely great time creating some unique and beautiful images of them. Below are some highlights from our time together. We can't wait to document your wedding next year at the Bank Street Annex in Easton, PA.

Johanna + Jeff's Amazing Wedding at Saucon Valley Acres - Bethlehem, PA

Johanna and Jeff's wedding was a spectacular celebration of love and laughter. Despite the day being overcast the mood's of the bride, groom, their friends and family were not. We all joined together at Saucon Valley Acres in Bethlehem, PA to celebrate the special bond these two sweet souls share because of the love of life and the happiness they bring to each other and those around them. Below are some highlights from their day we made for them.

Venue: Saucon Valley Acres, Bethelehem, PA
Flowers: Ross's Florist
Cake: Village Bake Shop
Dress: David's Bridal
Tux: C.E. Roth
DJ: Tony Casiano
Photography: Garcia Photography