Family Portraits at wedding?

posted 2 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 2
Member
716 posts
Busy bee

I’m planning to ask our parents, siblings, and bridal party to remain or reenter the church after the ceremony so that we can take portraits at the alter.  I’m not sure what your setup is, but can you do something similar?

The problem with having the DJ make announcements is that it interrupts the natural flow and you’ll inevitably have people who have disappeared.  The earlier in the event you take the portraits, I think the better success you’ll have…before people leave, get drunk, get tired, spread out, etc.

Post # 3
Member
2657 posts
Sugar bee

I haven’t seen a lot of my extended family in years, so I really want to get some nice family portraits at our wedding.  We are doing ours right after the ceremony and just having our aunts/uncles stick behind for 15 mins in the ceremony area (the reception is in the same location).  I know that once people start mingling at cocktail hour and dinner, it’s going to be super hard to get them organized to do a photo.  Our photographer also told us that immediately after the ceremony is the best time for family portraits.

Post # 4
Member
308 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: May 2015

My mother insisted on doing this as well, and you will be happy you did. Our photographer was great at going over the day and even added that he would make time for the family photos. He said he would allow about 15 minutes to take them right after the ceremony, before cocktail hour. He said he makes it clear to family that we are doing them quickly so they can enjoy drinks and we can get them done fast. I don’t think they will be as formal as people sitting and posing, our photographer is pretty contemporary and laidback so getinng everyone to group together and shoot some photos is probably how it will go.

You will be happy you did it though because if you have older relatives, you will want to cherish those photos when they pass.

Post # 6
Member
4876 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

amoore2:  It’s very regional and really depends on your timeline for the day. I’m from the south, and a wedding photographer. Down here we keep it to immediate family (and grandparents). Every now and then we might include extended family, but in the form of a “large group shot” of everyone and not each individual family. Then again, we are usually allocated around an hour (basically cocktail hour) to do all formals – which has to include family, bridal party, and bride/groom so going through endless family formals would basically eat up the whole time. My DH is from up north, and up there a 2pm Catholic ceremony with a 3 hour gap is perfectly normal and they spend hours doing family photos to include everyone and their neighbor.

Post # 7
Member
1566 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

amoore2:  We took advantage of having everyone there, so we announced for all related family to stay behind after the wedding ceremony for photos.

It took a bit of wrangling, and we even got on the ambo to announce it over the speakers that all My family needed to be on the altar ASAP, then all of his family, etc. We only had about 15 minutes to get all of our photos done before we had to get out of there.

Post # 8
Member
47 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: November 2014

amoore2:  We are doing family photos.  I’m not sure what the timeline of your wedding is.  We actually have a four hour break (very normal where I’m from) Our cocktail hour doesn’t start until 5:30, we’ve asked everyone included in the family photos to be at the reception for 4:30, so it gives an hour to take family photos with my side and my fiance’s side.  We just asked everyone in person or over the phone. One of our cousins, has the same plan for her wedding, and she included an additional card with her invitations, to these family members, something something along the lines of,  “the bride and groom request you to partake in family photos at this time, this place etc.” It was just an easier and more organized way of doing things and I wish we would have done that too.

Post # 9
Member
1197 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

We’re doing our family portraits right after the ceremony.  Our photographer asked us to designate someone in the family to assemble everyone together for the pictures so that no one wanders off!

Post # 10
Member
687 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

Our photographers had a list of portraits we wanted (groom + mom, groom + dad, groom + mom&dad etc.), and we got those done right after the ceremony in about 10-15 minutes! The coordinator asked our parents to stay, while the rest of the guests went to the cocktail hour, and it was logistically much easier than I had imagined. 🙂

Post # 11
Member
6525 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

amoore2:  our wedding was very local so we had time to take pictures with the family. our ceremony was at 3pm, ended at 3:30-3:45, we had a receiving line at the church. We took pictures at the Church with both sides of the family and the bridal party within an hour (4-5). From 5:15 to 6 we took some more pictures with the bridal party, family, and then we did just the bride and groom. We ended up taking some more pictures of just use (bride and groom) for a half hour because my sister had a seizure in the bridal suite and the bridal party and our family were trying to hide it from me so I was not worrying. So to keep me from finding out they told me that I should take some more pictures. By the itme my sister was ok and the EMTs left it was 6:30 so I couldn’t really enjoy the cocktail hour fully, so I had the catering hall bring me whatever was left to shove down our throat to eat before entering the reception. 

Post # 12
Member
1193 posts
Bumble bee

amoore2:  Both sets of our parents had laundry lists of photos they wanted. We emailed all the family members and asked them to stay after the ceremony for some photos.

If I could go back and do it again, I would absolutely pare down the photo list. It was hands-down the worst hour of the day. Plus, all our other photos were taken outdoors, and the church photos pale in comparison. Its definitely more for the parents. I printed ZERO of these photos for my own use.

PS – We did take immediate family photos beforehand outside. I like those photos. 🙂

Post # 13
Member
4876 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

LindyLu:  THANK YOU for posting this! I can’t tell you how many times I make it 1/3 of the way through the family formals list before the bride throws her hands up and says “I’m over it, I don’t want to do anymore”. Not even kidding!!! I 100% support the immediate family formals – bride/groom with parents, siblings, grandparents. It’s the endless extended family photos with every individual set of cousins and such that drag on.

Post # 14
Member
3280 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

This is my biggest regret. After the ceremony and bubble exit everyone run off to the reception becauase it was starting to rain again. We were suppose to do the family portraits at that time. My photographer asked if I wanted to do them at the reception but by that point I just wanted to get the night started. I about cried the next day when I didn’t have them. Every wedding I’ve been to we’re in the portraits and those are some of my favorite pictures. It’s the only time all our families, aunts/uncles/cousins on both sides will be although and our grandparents are getting older. The photographer took photos of each table but I’m still incredibly upset we don’t have them. I’d give anything to do those again. 

Post # 15
Member
2661 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

We did posed family pictures.  I am glad we did!

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