Group Photos are a tradition in Wedding Photography born from creating a record of who attended, many of whom won’t have been seen for years and probably won’t be seen again until the next family Wedding or Funeral
Few newly-weds like doing them as it means you’re pretty much stood still, sometimes for a LONG time, while I try to herd folk (who don’t want to be in them) around you. Although I try to make this as fun as possible it’s not unusual for you to become bored or frustrated with your Guests and to start to strike off or totally abandon the idea!
The ‘trick’ then, is to get everyone in the Groups you want but in the shortest number of Groups you can, and to move as few people as possible each time; so if you do want some Group Photos I recommend them as…
- EVERYONE – this isn’t always practicable unless I can shoot from above or its a smallish number of people
- BOTH families – so everyone related to you both
- EACH Family – so this is actually 2 Groups
- BOTH sets of Parents – then quickly with each side’s Parent’s – so 3 Groups here
- BRIDAL PARTY – for a Bride & Groom this often splits into the Groom & Groomsmen and the Bride & Bridesmaids too; same-sex couples tend to have just one Group here
- Any other important Group i.e. Golfing buddies; Workmates; Uni-mates; Boozing Girlfriends; etc.
NOTE: the ‘average’ length of time it takes for each Group photo is 3 minutes.
So if you have 10 Groups you can expect to be stood still for around 30 minutes, and 20 Groups could have you not moving at all for an hour!
To make it all easier for you I shoot Group Photos in a relaxed style, so no complex ‘posing’ as such, this not only makes the process quicker but it seems to keep Guests happier too.
In the month leading up to your Wedding I’ll raise this query with you and if you do want some Group Photos, I’ll ask you to prepare a list and advise accordingly on how best to shoot it to keep you all happy.
A final thought on Group Photos…
If you LOVE the idea of candid ‘natural’ photos of you & your Guests interacting, then with a large Group Photo list you may not get any!
In the time it takes me to shoot 10 Groups I could have shot 50+ photos of you & your Guests having fun instead.
It’s YOUR Wedding – it’s YOUR choice