May 9, 2023

Planning For Great Wedding Photos | Managing Client Expectations

How Do You Get Great Wedding Photos?

Wedding Day Timelines, Shot Lists, Pinterest Boards and Managing Expectations

Planning for great Wedding Photos can be very stressful for engaged couples.  As a New York Wedding Photographer, one of my major jobs (other than the photography, of course) is managing expectations and facilitating a good experience on the Wedding Day for my clients.  We also think with the end goal of delivering a fabulous Wedding Album to remember the best day of our clients’ lives.  Good communication with my couples makes a huge difference in the outcome of both the day and the wedding photos.  So what does planning for great wedding photos entail when we work with our couples?  Glad you asked.

Planning for Great Wedding Photos Upstate NY
We want to create enough time in the Wedding Day Timeline so we can create Family Formals in a stress free way.

Wedding Day Timelines:

One of the first discussions we have revolves around the Wedding Day Timeline.  You simply cannot skip this step when planning for great wedding photos.

I like to talk about this as soon as possible so we are able to plan enough time to get all the wedding photos the couple needs.  It is important to do this before other portions of the day are locked in leaving us with not enough time.

Saratoga Springs NY Summer Wedding
If pictures of the Getting Ready part of the day are important, you definitely need to plan ahead.

One example is that many times the client, as well as some other wedding vendors, do not understand how long something like Family Formals really takes.  I have also found that couples often hugely underestimate how long travel between different locations like the getting ready area and the ceremony location and reception area will take.

One thing I have learned over years of photographing weddings is that not enough time equals a totally stressed out Bride and Groom.  Getting ahead with a good Wedding Day Timeline really pays off in the end.

Park city Wedding Photos
Let’s make sure we don’t forget a photo with someone important like your Grandmother by having a list of family members you want photographed.

Shot Lists:

While I do not need a shot list for every single wedding photo to be created on the day of the event, I have found that a shot list of which people are needed for family formals is a wonderful item to have.

I personally feel that any Wedding Photographer who needs the Checklist from Bride’s Magazine with items like “Bride Alone,” Bride with Bridesmaids,” etc. is not  a professional Wedding Photographer.

However, a family formal shot list is great for making sure every family member is present and accounted for and we don’t miss any important people.  That is why I always request my couples make a list of important people for family photos.

Bridal Portraits Mansion Saratoga NY
I like this series of images–we had enough time to play because we had worked out the Timeline.

Pinterest Boards/Mood Boards Help Planning For Great Wedding Photos:

I am the first to admit that I personally love going on Pinterest.  I find it inspiring and fun.

Mood Boards can also cause a few problems.  I want to see what general look my couples are attracted to.  I do not, however, want to replicate hundreds (or even thousands) of images sourced on the internet.

Saratoga Mansion Wedding Photos
Pinterest for inspiration, yes. Line by line copies, NO!

Over the years, I have had couples send me boards with images that have literally nothing to do with their weddings.  As in a series of images taken on the beach in Florida splashing in the waves and their wedding will be in the Adirondack Mountains in the Winter.  I am a good Wedding Photographer, but I can’t summon the sea, complete with waves, in the Dead of Winter.  I can’t make it dark enough for a Sparkler Exit if your wedding ends at 3 PM on a sunny, Summer day.  I wish I were that powerful and magical–I truly do.

What I want to do is work with you to create YOUR wedding photos–not line for line recreate images from some random couple’s wedding.  Let’s make images together that inspire others instead of trying to copy or force something that simply isn’t authentic to you.  You will be happier in the end anyway.

Best Saratoga Photographers Near Me
Sometimes you just need to relax, have fun, and let the magic happen.

Planning for Great Wedding Photos Includes The Wedding Album

Wedding Albums Saratoga Photographers
This album has a beautiful Acrylic cover with a leather spine–one of many options.

Finally, we want all of our clients to be able to create and display an outstanding Wedding Album.  To do that, we need to make sure all of the above are in place, for sure.  We also make sure we offer really great quality products.  We carry some of the finest albums available, and all of our albums are made right here in the USA.

There we have it–Planning for Great Wedding Photos.  A little proper planning really does go a long way.

Did you enjoy this post?  You might also enjoy this post on Wedding Day Timelines.

Are you ready to schedule a consultation to discuss your Wedding Photography needs?  Use our Contact form to get in touch or give us a call at (518) 584-4237 today.

Susan Blackburn is a Saratoga NY based Wedding Photographer who specializes in photographing amazing couples in love.  She services Wedding Photography clients in Upstate NY and the NYC Metro Area.  She is also available for travel to Destination Weddings.