The Wedding Shoot | What time to start and finish

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Wedding photography

The wedding report

A wedding photo shoot is one of the few things you keep from your wedding day. This way, it lets you relive the moments but also see the events you may have missed.

In this article, I will give you some handy tips on how to start and end the wedding shoot at a good time. We also go through which locations work well to the most beautiful wedding photos to make.

Wedding photographer

The best time to start a wedding shoot.

If you hesitate to start later or finish earlier remember that you can almost always book an extra hour on the day, but not the other way around.

1. One hour before the wedding dress goes on.

The best time to start photographing is one hour before the bride enters the wedding dress steps. That way you are neither too early nor too late, as it hair and make-up often takes around 1.5 to 2 hours which is a waste of time. In the hour before the dress is put on, the following things will be photographed:

  • The wedding dress, suit & shoes
  • Hair & make-up
  • Preparations
  • The atmosphere
  • Jewellery
  • Cards
  • Family & friends
  • All moments
  • Possibly First Look father

2. First Look

Although our preference is to start the reportage one hour before the wedding dress goes on. First look is also a good time to start shooting. That way you won't have the preparation but a moment that feels like a start to the wedding day.

Starting at two locations

If you start in two different places, then a second shooter is useful, but if you have one wedding photographer, it is best if he or she starts with the groom first and travels on to the bride. This is most convenient for both the first look at the bride and the ceremony.

End of wedding coverage

The best time to end the wedding shoot.


Sunset

Depending on the season, sunset is a great time to finish. To see what time the sun sets, type "sunset 1 June 2022" into google and you will immediately see the sunset time.


Dinner

When everyone goes to the table and there are no further speeches, dinner is a good time to end the wedding shoot.

The opening dance

If you have an opening dance then it is a nice ending to the wedding reportage. This way, the reportage ends with the start of the party.

The Party

You can also choose to finish when the party ends or have one hour of the party photographed so you also have the atmosphere.

Wedding shoot in the Ikea

Choosing a photo location

a good photo location

Searching for a good location can be challenging but with these tips, it is quite easy.

1. Go for a photo location with a lot of variety. For example, consider a location where the background is different such as a botanical garden or a farm. Even a forest can give many different backgrounds as long as there are different plants and trees.

2. Choose a location which is different from a wedding venue because photos will already be taken at the wedding venue itself.

3. See what is on the route so you are close to wedding venue at the end of the photo shoot. This will save unnecessary stress.

Flow factory The Hague

Backup photo locations

Always have a plan B

It seems to be sunny all week and yet it starts raining exactly when you want to take the photos. What now?

If you haven't prepared anything at that point, you still need to arrange a venue at that point. The wedding photographer will try to help with that but the choices are often minimal.

It is most convenient to have too many photo locations for the wedding shoot so that on the day itself you can decide what best suits each weather. So plan at least one indoor location in case it rains. Think: a museum, greenhouse, theatre, factory, farm, ship, restaurant, Ikea, swimming pool, mill etc.

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About the Author: Justin Manders

Thanks for reading this article! Above all, let me know what you want to see. You can see my entire portfolio view. In my opinion, I have the most fun profession in the world. Together with Nathalie, I have been photographing for just over seven years now and I have learned the most by getting to know many people. I think the camera is just a tool and it is the people who make the photo.
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