Hi everyone just a quick question, what is the ideal amount of time you'll need for photography? I would definitely love pictures of myself getting ready, the ceremony, after the ceremony and reception. Thank you😊
It really depends on how much of the reception you want them there for. My husband wanted our photographer for our entire reception. Our package was 10 hours so our photographers arrived at noon and left when the reception ended at 10 pm. We started hair and makeup at 8 am and finished at 2:00 pm so they were still able to get a good amount of getting ready photos. We had to be dressed by 2:30 pm for pre-ceremony photos. Our ceremony started at 4:30 pm. Pre-ceremony photos included separate bridal party photos, first look with my dad, and my husband and I's first look. I was hidden from guests at 3:45 pm. Your timeline will really help dictate when you will want the photographer to arrive.
Most standard receptions are 4 hrs. Add 1 hr cocktail hour, half hour ceremony, half hour to hour before ceremony for formals, getting ready is about 1-2 hrs. Gives you roughly 8 hrs coverage which is standard for most photographers. Or 6 if you don't need them past spotlight dances and are having everything at one venue.
We're getting 10 hours. 12-10. Reception finishes at 11 pm, so he'll only miss the very end bit which I imagine some of our rowdier friends might be relieved won't be documented, haha!
Like the earlier poster, we need to be completely done and ready to get formal photos at 2, so there's plenty of time for getting ready shots and all the little detail pictures (like dress, ring, shoes, etc) before the bridal party shots. We also decided on two shooters, so one will be at the boys' house, and the other with me. If you're only having one photographer, you need to figure this into your timeline too, because obviously he or she can't be in two places at once.
This can mean the boys have to get ready (or pretend to get ready) super early so the photographer can get them first, to allow him or her to stay longer with the bride, who let's face it, is more likely to need extra time to get ready than the groom and groomsmen. Don't forget as well, that if you only have one, the photographer has to manage to get over to your ceremony or reception venue, to get shots of that before anyone else comes in and sits down. My friend had only one shooter, and he ended up rushing us quite a bit, because he had to drive over to their ceremony site, get pics of the inside, and then take photos of the boys, so he was almost pushing us out the door and nagging the makeup artist to get done faster.
Most photographers have packages that you can chose from, and they are normally anywhere from 6-10 hours roughly! When I booked my photographer, I told her I wanted her there for everything from us getting ready, to our send off, to the wedding party and guests leaving the venue to go hit the town downtown. She in from out of state and was willing to take the cap off of her time limit, and I'll be paying by the hour after 10 hours! I would discuss it with your photographer and see what options she has!
My photographer recommended at least 3 hours before the ceremony for getting ready shots/first look/family photos (if family is ready). The package we chose is for 8 hours, so he'll arrive around 2 and be there till 10 along with a second shooter.
We may actually see about having him come a little earlier, because we're early to bed people, and once it hits a certain time of the night I don't anticipate we'll have much left for him to photograph.
We're doing an 8-hour package, which will break down to: 3 hours pre-ceremony (getting ready plus knocking out all the group pictures beforehand), 30 minutes for the ceremony, 1 hour for cocktail hour, and 3.5 hours for the reception (which is about how long our reception is anyway).
We initially booked a 6-hour package because I didn't care that much about getting ready photos or pictures of people dancing (would have photographer leave after all the formal stuff), but it wasn't that much more to add the 2 hours AND get a second shooter, so we just went for it.
I think it all depends how long your ceremony and reception will take - some people have 5-6 hours dedicated solely to the reception! Also consider whether your ceremony and reception are in the same space or if your photographer will need to travel - I'd bet that travel time between the two will be included (like if it takes 30 minutes to drive between the two, you're losing 30 minutes of time you could be taking pictures!).