People love wedding photos, but not sure how long they should take. Many people consider wedding photos to be a necessary evil of a wedding day. Brides recognize that they are necessary, but are not sure how long to build into the schedule for them.
As an aside, let me point out here that much depends on your wedding photographer. An organized and charismatic photographer makes all the difference. An organized photographer helps wedding photos go smoothly and efficiently. I put hours of planning into doing them and try to make the process as fun as possible. I have been able to photograph two large families and a bridal party in as little as 30 minutes. This was a challenge: planning for more time is always better.
For family formals I recommend 30 to 45 minutes depending on your family size.
You should plan a half hour for bride and groom portraits. Additionally, you should plan an 30-45 minutes for bridal party photos. This, of course, varies by how large and cooperative your bridal party is.
If we travel to additional locations for wedding photos, you will have to gather everything – and everyone – together for transport. It is a good idea to designate a friend who is not in wedding photos to do this for you. Many times we will do the family photos at the ceremony location. The bridal party often travels via party bus to other locations.
St. Louis has some BEAUTIFUL places for wedding photos, including Forest Park, Lafayette Square, Tower Grove Park, the Arch, and Carondelet Park, to name a few. BUT: popular wedding days make these locations crowded. I know of some others that are not as busy, but prettier. I could share these here, but I have to save something for those who book me!
Long lost family and friends love to visit after weddings. Often it is a challenge to keep everyone together. For that reason, so you need to allow some extra bubble time in case someone goes missing.
These are my recommended minimum times. Obviously, bigger groups require more time. Worst case scenario is that we finish early and you have some moments to relax.