Planning Your Wedding Photography Timeline: A Guide

Your wedding day is supposed to be the happiest day of your life. Since it involves lots of planning, it can become chaotic if you fail to prepare early. One of the most important aspects you should pay attention to is photography/videography. Use this article as your guide for planning your wedding photography timeline.

Getting Ready for a wedding photoshoot

Before getting ready for a wedding photoshoot, a good rule of thumb is to set aside 30 minutes for dressing up before leaving for the ceremony venue. If you like to have your portraits photographed during and after getting ready, fix 2 hours for prep time. Communicate with your hairstylists, makeup artists, and other vendors to avoid issues.

The Ceremony

You should budget 60 minutes for the entire wedding ceremony. Don't forget to include the travel time between getting ready and arriving at the ceremony venue. Allow time also for the hugs, kisses, congratulations, and confetti after the ceremony and the group photo.

The Reception

Allow 2 hours for taking photos between the end of the ceremony and the reception if you have the same venue for the ceremony and reception. This time should be enough to relax, enjoy with guests, and take bride and groom photos and group shots.

Consider allowing more time or hiring more photographers if you focus on capturing photos of guest interaction and the reception venue.

Wedding Party

Time spend on the wedding party pictorial is up to you. Spending 1-1.5 hours taking photos before sunset is advisable. Skipping out the party photographs if you have already taken pictures during prep time. If you are still unsure, come up with a plan with your photographer.

Cake Cutting and First Dance

The cake cutting and first dance as a married couple portions should only take 10-20 minutes. Take shots of all these at once to avoid constantly interfering with your guests' enjoyable time while they're already on the dance floor.

Family Photos

The time for taking family photos depends on how cooperative everyone is. It's best to budget 30 minutes for it during cocktail hour or after the wedding ceremony. However, if you want to have more time for capturing a couple of shots, limit the time for casual group shots to only ten minutes.

Allot more time than expected

Since anything unexpected can happen, allocate more time for the getting ready wedding photoshoot. For example, if you think a particular part of the celebration will take 30 minutes, allow 45 minutes. Doing this avoids running late and getting flustered.


Planning your wedding photography / videography timeline earlier can make the celebration itself as stress-free as possible. During the preparation phase, don't forget the ideal time of the day (and time of year) for photoshoots. So you can have plenty of time to capture perfect moments. Don’t forget daylight savings either.

To make photo sessions fun and enjoyable, hire skilled wedding photographers. Make Cole Studios a part of the most important day of your life. We offer wedding photography and wedding videography for clients getting married around Wollongong and Illawarra areas. With our experience, you can trust us to preserve your precious moments. Book an appointment today

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