Ever wondered how the heck you’re going to make sure to get all the important pictures on your wedding day with family, friends, and kids running everywhere? Well, having a “shot list” is your key to success! This is simply a written or printed out list of all the combinations and individual photos you want taken for sure by your photographer during your formal portrait time.
If you hire a second photographer you can ask your lead photographer to delegate certain shots to the 2nd photographer in order to help everything flow much quicker and get your family and friends to the reception faster. This will also give you and your spouse more time alone with the main photographer for bride and groom portraits.
Even without having a 2nd photographer you can save a lot of time and chaos by sticking to your shot list. Find a close friend who will be attending the wedding and ask them to be your “wrangler” – the person who gets everyone together for each shot. Your wrangler (or wedding coordinator if you have one) should be familiar with your families, names, and relations. They should be loud and able to get around quickly in order to pull everyone together. You may not think this is a difficult task but trust me, it exactly resembles herding cats.
Print at least 3 copies of your shot list and make sure you know who has them in case something happens to a person or their list.
Here’s an example of a shot list I quickly put together – you can customize it and add specific names or changes that suit your wedding.
Bride and groom with Officiant
*Officiant can leave*
Bride and groom with her grandparents
Bride and groom with his grandparents
*grandparents can relax*
Bride and groom with her parents
Bride and groom with her parents + siblings
Bride and groom with her parents + additional family members (aunts, uncles etc.)
Bride with her parents
Bride with her additional family
Bride with flower girl
Bride with maid of honor
Bride and groom with his parents
Bride and groom with his parents + siblings
Bride and groom with his parents + additional family members (aunts, uncles etc.)
Groom with his parents
Groom with his additional family
Groom with best man
Bride and groom with both side parents
Bride and groom with both side parents and siblings
Bride and groom with both side parents and siblings and grandparents
*Family can leave and go to reception*
Bride with bridesmaids
Bride with bridesmaids with flower girl
Bride with bridesmaids funny
Bride with groomsmen
Bride with groomsmen funny
Groom with groomsmen
Groom with groomsmen funny
Groom with bridesmaids
Groomsmen and bridesmaids
Groomsmen and bridesmaids funny
INDIVIDUALS (more optional)
Maid of honor