There’s nothing better than getting your wedding photos back! However, deciding which ones should make it into your wedding album can be tricky, especially when you’re choosing who to include. Wedding Wingman Vanessa Mir of Heirloomsnaps is here to help! In her eyes, you should present your wedding photos like a story from start to finish and your loved ones are important characters! These are a wedding photographer’s most important wedding photos to showcase candid moments with friends and family!
We’re starting off with your ceremony because it’s the biggest part of your wedding and is when the wedding photos you can’t miss will be taken!
Waiting to Say I DO-
The moment before you walk down the aisle is a special moment you’ll share with family. Bonus points if you get to see the train of your dress in action!
First look of each spouse seeing each other:
Many couples choose to do a first look, instead of waiting to see each other walk down the aisle. From a photographer’s perspective, this is a much better way to capture the genuine reaction of both partners on camera, and it gives you a few moments together before your ceremony.
Family members watching and listening to the couple exchange vows:
Since you’ll be a bit busy during this time, it’s always great to look back on what everyone else was feeling.
Close-up shot of each spouse looking into each other’s eyes:
You can feel the love in the air!
First kiss as newlyweds:
The aftermath of the infamous “you may kiss the bride” is sure to showcase real emotion.
Couple cheering as they exit down the aisle as newlyweds or their grand entrance:
This unprompted moment and pure joy can not be more perfect for a photograph.
Your wedding story starts far before you walk down the aisle. Make sure your wedding photographer’s contract includes time for pre-wedding photos! These shots will set the scene and show the behind the scenes of both you and your spouse prepping with family and friends for the big day.
Mother of the bride (or spouse) helping with the dress:
A great way to showcase a motherly moment and intricate details of the dress such as a lace up back.
Father of the bride (or spouse) first look:
This intimate moment captured will be one you and your dad will treasure forever.
Father of the groom (or spouse) helping getting dressed:
This can be helping with a tie or jacket. Having planned candid moments is great for men who sometimes are camera shy!
Mother of the groom (or spouse) helping get dressed:
We love when mom’s help with the boutonniere. It’s always to have getting ready images of the groom as they can sometimes be overshadowed by the bride getting ready!
Family photos are a must! Not only will it be fun to look back upon, but gifting wedding photos is an amazing way to thank your family members for coming! However, this is a wedding album not a family photo album, so Vanessa recommends these images to make everyone happy!
Spouse #1 Parents:
Wedding photos with parents are always a hit!
Spouse #2 Parents:
You’ll be grateful to have a professional photo with your siblings to look back on.
Spend some time away from the all chaos with your spouse and of course your photographer, but just pretend we aren’t there. While your whole album could be filled with just you two, here are five wedding photos you should print.
Iconic show-stopper portrait of the couple:
This will be the mantlepiece image that truly captures your love on your special day.
Spouse #1 Portrait:
Show off your beautiful hair, makeup and wedding dress in your bridal portrait! For flattering poses, check out our video “Wedding Photographer Teaches You How to Pose.”
Spouse #2 Portrait:
Check wedding photos for the groom off your list!
Sneak away during cocktail hour when everyone’s busy to share a special intimate moment!
Portrait of the couple:
High on the list of which wedding photos to take is a portrait of the couple looking at the camera. Vanessa says keep focus the camera on the subject not the surroundings!
Weddings are a celebration of culture! If you decide to include a cultural tradition in your wedding, make sure to capture it! Here are three examples from Vanessa’s portfolio!
Balinese Wedding Tradition:
Wedding attire is filled with colors and gold which symbolize happiness and celebration!
Vietnamese Wedding Tradition:
Đám Hỏi is the ceremony where the groom officially asks for the bride hand in marriage. The groom and his family will fill up ‘mam qua,’ or red tins with gifts for the bride.
After rings are exchanged, a Crowning ceremony takes place in which a priest places a crown on the groom and then the bride’s head reciting the crown blessing.
While a group shot of the whole wedding party is nice to have, often not it can be a lot of people that may not know each other. For your wedding album, Vanessa suggests you capture both spouse’s wedding parties so they are more intimate!
Spouse #1 Wedding Party:
Spouse #2 Wedding Party:
Your reception is a great time for your photographer to get candid photos of you and your guests! If you have a large wedding, you may want to consider hiring a second photographer so that all of your guests are captured. While these photos are great for social media, here Vanessa’s picks for your wedding photo book!
Toasts are sure to emotion such as laughter or tears! However, make sure to have your designated toast giver read our Do’s and Don’ts of Toasts so that you’re not too embarrassed or upset with what they say!
Special first dance:
This wedding tradition represents the first activity done as a couple.
Couple at the table with drink in hand:
Your photographer will often get a couple variations of this, but this is a great shot to capture what your guests were seeing as they enjoyed dinner.
Candids of special people or a large group shot:
Experience photographers will be able to take a large group shot of all if not most of your wedding guests after the special dance. It’s a safe shot to ensure you have a photo of everyone, plus the DJ/band loves to begin the open dance floor song with everyone already together.