How to organize your family and group photos!

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The family and group photos are without a doubt the most busy and posing intense part of the day. Depending on the size of your family it can be anything from a shot of a group of 5 to a shot of a group of 50, most of whom may suddenly become MIA as soon as the photos begin.

Here are a few tips to help move the process along smoothly and to make sure no one gets forgotten!

Tip 1: Make a list!

Prior to your wedding day, let’s touch base and take a few moments to talk through all of the final details. We’ll discuss who will be in your family/group photos and which shots mean the most to you. Then we will work together to create a list of the various friends and family members you’d like included and how you’d like the groups organized.

Keep in mind that group photos take some time to pull together, so I recommend you keep them short and sweet. Here are my favorite family must-have photos:

  • Bride + Parents
  • Groom + Parents
  • Bride + Groom + Both Parents
  • Bride/Groom with Grandparents + Parents + Siblings
  • Bride + Bridesmaids
  • Groom + Groomsmen
  • Bridal Party

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Tip 2: Enlist the help of your bridal party!

While I love meeting new people at every wedding I photograph, there are so many new faces and names that it’s tough to keep track of everyone by name and face. Enlist the help of a bridesmaid or groomsman who is familiar with both sides of the family to help wrangle people for group photos.

Tip 3: Let your friends and family know ahead of time!

There’s nothing better than clear communication, right? Tell your friends and family that you’d like them to participate in your group photos prior to your actual wedding day. If you want to make things even easier, fill them in on the anticipated schedule so that they know where to be and when they should be there. This will ensure that everyone is ready and accounted for when it’s time for their close-up.

Kathy Silke Photography - Ireland Wedding Photographer - Group Photos -314

Kathy Silke Photography - Ireland Wedding Photographer - Group Photos -314

Kathy Silke Photography - Ireland Wedding Photographer - Group Photos -314

Tip 4: Take the weather into account!

As always, it’s Ireland, and the weather is unpredictable. While we’ll plan on taking amazing photos outside in the sun with flowers and greenery, let’s create a ‘Plan B’ proir to your wedding day just in case the heavens decide to open and lash rain. That way we’ll avoid spending an hour ferrying people around the hotel looking for the best indoor spots for photos.

Tip 5: Friend photos can be taken separately.

Family and bridal party photos are a bit more formal than the group shot with your work mates, so let’s plan accordingly and save these more casual (and fun) images for the reception or even after the meal. When you’re ready, just pull a few of your besties together and strike a pose!

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Tip 6: Have fun!

Yes, family photos are the more time intensive party of the day, but with a solid plan in place and some organization, they should go very smooth. Gone are the days where people have to stand rigidly with fake smiles plastered on their faces. Instead, try linking arms or putting your arms around each other. Share a laugh or tell a joke. These moments make for lovely relaxed and natural photos, AND help the process go faster for you!

So there you have it! The key here is that a bit of organization and planning goes a long way! And to make sure that even when it gets a bit hectic and crazy and no one can find Aunt Betty, relax and enjoy the experience. Don’t sweat the small stuff!

If you’re looking for an Ireland Wedding Photographer, please email me at I’d love to meet you!

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