There is probably someone in your family that freaks out when they hear the words "it's time for family photos." (Maybe it's you!) And I'm not going to sugarcoat it for you, they can be really tough. It can be one of the most stressful parts of the wedding day, for everyone. So I wanted to give you some pointers so your family photo process can be easy peasy lemon squeezy!
1.) Have a list and stick to it
Your photographer is most likely going to ask for a list of family shots you want. Here's what you should keep in mind -
A. Keep in simple! I would suggest no more than 15 shots.
B. Make sure to write their name down - this helps when we are calling out groupings. It's way easier for people to understand "Susan, Mike, John and Kim" vs. "The brides aunt, uncle, cousin and his wife." Know what I mean?
C. Let the photographer know of any sour relationships. That way they can help divert any tension that might come up.
2.) Let family know they need to hang around after the ceremony is over
This isn't crucial. But an easy way to do this is to have the officiant announce for close family to stay and dismiss the rest of your guests - after you've finished your recessional of course!
After you've finished your recessional, you and your spouse need to hightail it out of there! Go wait in another space, that way guests aren't tempted to greet you (you'll have plenty of time for this later!!). Once all your guests have made their way to cocktail hour, you can come back to the altar to start the family photo process. This can save SO much time!
4.) Do your family portraits at your ceremony location
If the lighting is ok, this is always the easiest! That way older family members don't have to go far, they can actually remain seated after the ceremony and just wait for photos to start!
5.) Save large groups for the reception
Large families? Sorority sisters? Save those for the reception! When it's appropriate, your DJ can make an announcement to gather certain groups on the dance floor and I'll snap a photo!
At the end of the day, don't stress! We will get those family shots one way or another! But I hope these tips will help you to have a smooth family photo process!