What photos will a wedding photographer take?


GJA Photography



There are so many choices when it comes to wedding photography packages and ensuring you get the wedding photography coverage that is right for you is a really important part.

A question that I often get asked is ‘what kind of photo coverage will I get on my wedding day?’. This question is usually a symptom of well meaning photographers (myself included) trying to keep things as simple as possible for clients, let me explain.

I often find when looking at wedding photography packages they will state such things as wedding photography all day coverage but say nothing about what that kind of coverage includes. Now if you have been to a wedding you may have a pretty good idea of the kind of thing the photographer will capture but if your new to the whole experience theres a good chance you may not. For example did you know that when signing the register at your wedding day photographers are not allowed to take pictures?

You may have some pretty firm ideas of what you would like your wedding photographer to capture on your day but it is also worth talking to your photographer to see what they will capture for you anyway as part of their wedding photography package.

Choosing the right photographer is very important in this regard as whilst a good package will provide extensive coverage, ensuring you get all the elements that matter for your day, some will limit you based on a set number of hours.

Fantastic things take place on a wedding day. With so many friends and family coming together to celebrate with you and to witness all the hard word that has gone into planning your day, you want to be sure your photographer captures the full story as it happens.

So in order to help you visualise the kind of coverage you may get I though I would talk you through a typical wedding day from start to finish to not only give you an idea of what I would cover for my clients but so you can check to see if your photographer does too.




Before your big day even starts you may want to give some thought to whether you would like an engagement session or as it is sometimes known a pre-wedding shoot.

Some photographers may include this as part of one of their wedding photography coverage within their wedding packages or as an optional add on.

Engagement sessions are a great way to get to know your photographer before the wedding day and to create something a little different.

For more inspiration and reasons why an engagement session may be a great option for you check out the following article for an in depth look at engagement sessions.

engagement photography in woods



When your photographer first arrives make sure they take images of the little details of your wedding day. You may have spent a long time trying to find the perfect rings, shoes or garter.

Telling the full story of your wedding day is so important because it’s the little details that evoke the memories of what you was doing and seeing at the time. Make sure you don’t miss out and ensure your wedding package includes them.


wedding photography coverage of shoes and perfume



Once your photographer has captured the small details attention should turn to what’s happening with the bridal party and groom.

Depending on the package and coverage chosen the option of adding a second photographer may help here due to the groom and bride getting ready in different locations.

This is the time of day when your hairdresser and makeup artist may be helping you get ready or where the groom is being helped to tie his neck tie by the bestman. This is usually a period where friends and family have a good laugh, drink champagne had help out with those little preparations.

The getting ready stage is also the time where the flowers would normally arrive along with the flower button holes. It could also be the time where the groom or bride has left a present or letter for their fiancé to open. A great opportunity to capture images that tell the full story and emotion of the day.

Check out this link on getting ready wedding photos for great tips and advice for preparing for the day.

bride getting ready at hemswell court lincolnshire



I absolutely love capturing the wedding day but one of my favourite times is the bridal portraits.

A great wedding photographer will keep n touch with you prior to your big day and will work with you to create a timetable that ensures you have enough time to have captured what’s important to you and the bridal portrait is a good example of this.

Allowing some time after you have got into your dress whilst you are looking your absolute best is well worth considering. This equally applies to the groom too.


Setting aside a few minutes to capture more of those finishing touches like putting on your earring or cufflinks and adjusting the veil is an opportunity not to be missed.




Whilst I have photographed some smaller weddings where no guests were invited, the chances are you will have already invited plenty of guests to witness your day.

Ensuring that your guests feel included can be important and is a great memento to look back on when viewing your wedding photos.

When I photograph a wedding I like to arrive at least half an hour before the ceremony starts. This allows me enough time to capture the groom, bestman and ushers greeting everyone. This is usually the first time family and friends have gotten together in a long time and can make for some wonderful and emotion filled images.


man and woman wedding guests



Everyone deserves the love on the day so ensuring time is set aside for the groom, bestman and ushers is an important element to ensure it’s captured.

Capturing relaxed natural images as they greet the guests is a must whilst spending a few extra minutes with the groom alone will ensure that the bride has an image to look back that reflects the point in the day that they were unable to share together.

These images are usually captured at the church but it is also common to meet the groom and his party at a local pub or other location just prior, relaxing before everyone arrives.

groom laughing with bestmen

wedding photography coverage of groomsmen holding umbrellas walking



Ensuring that you have images that capture your arrival will help you remember the feelings you had just before the ceremony.

Whether you have paid for some bespoke wedding transport or you have arranged your own low key arrival obtaining a record of that adds to the story of your day.

bride arrives in rover 100 wedding car

bride looking down groom in reflection



Now it is important to understand that when it comes to photographing the ceremony there may be restrictions placed upon a wedding photographer.

Whilst you and your guests may be expecting a photographer to snap away the person conducting the ceremony as the right to put a halt to it or usually provide guidance beforehand on what can and cannot be taken.

In my experience most ceremony officials are very accommodating in this area and are keen to ensure that everyone is part of the day can do the best for you. The times where restrictions have been placed is usually around not using flash or having to be positioned at the back of the altar.interpersonal

It is always worth discussing this with your photographer and ceremony official beforehand so you know what to expect. I have found thought that having good interpersonal skills as a photographer can help greatly in getting images that would otherwise not have been allowed.

groom sees bride at alter



Who doesn’t love a confetti shot and a must have for any wedding album.

This can be a fun experience for your guests and for you and a good wedding photographer can help organise this so your guests are in the right place at the right time.

bride and groom with confetti at shustoke barn




I have photographed many sparkler shots of the years and is something that creates a fab atmosphere in wedding images. Some couples even replace confetti for this kind of image as it opens up all kinds of creative possibilities for images.




An essential element of any wedding day is the group photos.

If planned in plenty of time with your wedding photographer this can run quickly and smoothly and ensure that you capture everyone that was there to share your day.

bridesmaid in pink dresses sat on floor



Another must have and the perfect opportunity to spend a little quiet time with just the two of you.

A wedding day can be particularly hectic and you can be sure that when you take the time out with each other you will be grateful.

This is the time to create those wow images with your photographer that reflect the personalties of you both and ensure you have something extra special to place on your wall at home.




Capturing the wonderful table decorations before your guests enter is another area of the day that you should ask your photographer to capture.

If you have spent many months planning and resourcing these important details that reflect who you are you will want to remember it just as it was before your guests enter the room. 

table decorations at wedding



From the tears to the belly laughs this is such a fun time to capture.

bestman giving speech at shustoke barn wedding



Don’t forget the cake!

This is a great time for your guests to gather around, take their own images and for your photographer to capture everything happening.

Ensuring you have some great images of your cake before you cut it and it disappears forever is another must have .



Usually done later in the evening the first dance is a part of the day that your photographer can get creative.opportunities

If you have spend weeks or months preparing for this moment or you are going to wing it on the night this is one of those moments that your guests will look forward to.

Incorporating live entertainment provides further opportunities for a wedding photographer to capture the moments that matter and the moments that you will look back on in years to come. This is especially touching if you have a particular song that means something to you both, looking at your images at a later stage will bring it flooding back.

bride and groom dancing at brackenborough hotel wedding



In my experience most guests tend to get onto the dance floor straight after the first dance, usually because they have been encouraged to do so by the bride and groom.

This is usually the time to get up amongst the guests on the dance floor and capture the ‘merry’ celebrations and funky dance moves. After a full day, guests will look forward to winding down, pulling unusual faces and dance moves.

Don’t let you your photographer miss these special moments that may come back to haunt them 🙂




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