Wedding Day Timeline | Planning for Your Wedding Photo Timeline

 

One of the trickiest thing about putting together a wedding is figuring out your wedding day timeline. I know this isn’t the most exciting aspect of the wedding day, but this is the one thing that can make or break your photography!

Wedidng Day Timeline Planning By Lisa Lander Photography

The last thing you want on your wedding day is to feel rushed! There is enough emotion already, and you don’t want any stress and panic by not having a proper timeline in place! Now depending on the time of year you are getting married, these times will change.

Even though most couples know that wedding photographers role is to take photos most don’t realize how big a role your photographer will play on your wedding day. We love to work with our clients to help them get the most out of their wedding photography investment, and one of the most important tasks is the timeline.


Developing a Killer Wedding Timeline | Step-by-Step Instruction

If you're beginning to plan your wedding day timeline, follow think about several steps

Wedding Day Timeline Planning By Lisa Lander Photography

1 | Time of the ceremony.

We like to start at the ceremony time and work our way through the remaining timeline, using the ceremony as a starting point. You typically add about 30 minutes before the ceremony for a rest, refresh and touch time also known as the time the bride is in “hiding”.

Wedding Day Timeline Planning By Lisa Lander Photography

2 | First Look

Most photographers and couples will sit down and discuss if they want to do a first look or not. Typically 90% of my couples opt for a first look as this is a special, emotional time that can be done between the two of you. If you are planning a first look this is almost always done right before the ceremony.

3 | Travel Time

If you are in a different location for your ceremony and reception, make sure to add some cushion time for travel. You will want to put an extra 15 minutes in the schedule and consider all travel from each location just in case an emergency comes up or there is traffic.

4 |  Time of Sunset

As with most photographers, we base our timelines off of the sun. We like to include sunset couples photos, since this is some of the best light of the day. We recommend looking for the time the sun will set on your wedding day and add about 30 minutes before sunset to ensure that you will get some epic couples portraits.

Wedding Day Timeline Planning By Lisa Lander Photography
Wedding Reception timeline planning

Wedding Photography Timeline Examples

Wedding Day Timeline One Location + First Look

This timeline is ideal for:

  • Including a First Look

  • Photographing Family Formals before the ceremony

  • Couples that have a receiving line after the ceremony

 

1:30 - 2:00  Primary Photographer Photographs Bride’s Details

Primary Photographer Photographs Hair & Makeup

2:00 - 3:-00  Primary Photographer Photographs Bride Getting Into Dress

                          Second Photographer Photographs Groom & Groomsmen Getting on Ties & Coats

2:45 - 3:00      Bridal Portraits

3:00 - 3:15       Bride With Bridesmaids

3:15 - 3:30       Bride with Her Family

3:45 - 4:00       Bride & Groom Hide, Rest & Retouch - Photograph Ceremony Decor

4:00 - 4:30      Wedding Ceremony

4:30 - 5:00      Immediate Family Photos           

 5:00 - 5:30     Bridal Party Photos

5:30 - 6:00     Husband & Wife Sunset Portraits 

6:00            Sunset 

6:00 - 6:30     Bride & Groom Join Cocktail Hour - Photograph Guests & Reception Decor

6:30 - 6:45    Couples Enter Reception Area

6:45 - 7:00 Wedding Couple, Bridal Party & Family Grand Entrance

7:00 - 7:30 Toasts & Dinner Is Served

7:30 - 8:00 First Dance & Family Dance

8:00-9:00 Dance Floor Opens Up

Bouquet Toss, Garter Toss, Grand Exit all happen within the last hour of the schedule.


Wedding Day Timeline One Location + No First Look

This timeline is ideal for:

  • Not Using A First Look

  • Photographing Family Formals after the ceremony

1:00 - 2:00  Primary Photographer Photographs Bride’s Details

Primary Photographer Photographs Hair & Makeup

2:00 - 2:45  Primary Photographer Photographs Bride Getting Into Dress

                     Second Photographer Photographs Groom & Groomsmen Getting

on Ties & Coats

When our couples choose not to do a first look, we do two things to adjust: first, we do as many photos as possible before the ceremony; second, we recommend a longer cocktail hour so that we have 30 minutes for immediate family and full bridal party portraits, 30 minutes with the bride and groom, and 30 minutes for cocktail hour and reception details. 

2:45 - 3:00      Bride Portraits

3:00 - 3:30       Bridal Party Photos Bride & Bridesmaids / Groom & Groomsmen

3:30 - 4:00      Bride & Groom Hide, Rest & Retouch - Photograph Ceremony Decor

4:00 - 4:30      Wedding Ceremony

4:30 - 5:00      Immediate Family Photos           

5:00 - 5:30     Bridal Party Photos

5:30 - 6:00 Husband & Wife Sunset Portraits 

6:00            Sunset 

6:00 - 6:30 Bride & Groom Join Cocktail Hour - Photograph Guests & Reception Decor

6:30 - 6:45    Couples Enter Reception Area

6:45 - 7:00 Wedding Couple, Bridal Party & Family Grand Entrance

7:00 - 7:30 Toasts & Dinner Is Served

7:30 - 8:00 First Dance & Family Dance

8:00-9:00 Dance Floor Opens Up

Bouquet Toss, Garter Toss, Grand Exit all happen within the last hour of the schedule.