I remember when I first started photographing weddings (six years ago) all the discussions with other photographers about what your favorite part of the day was to photograph. And without fail every photographer will tell you it’s the couple portraits. The time alone with the bride and groom to create beautiful portraits. And I can’t disagree with them. It is generally the time of the wedding day that photographers have the most leeway to create the art that they love the most, they have the most control and time to create their art. And without fail family formals were (and still are) the most hated part of the day. You can still go onto any photographer forum and find photographers bashing family formals. Hating doing them, the amount of time they take and the complete lack of creativity. But here is the crazy thing…. I actually love that time of day. The more years I spend photographing weddings, the more I love family formals. Because these are the people that matter the most to the bride & groom! These are the relationships that all led to this point! This is mom and dad with their child (who is all grown up now) and those relationships are beautiful! I think that these are some of the most important photos of the day and they certainly deserve as much love and creativity as a photo of the bride’s shoe. Every year it is my goal to approach the family formals with more love, patience (because let’s be honest they are always a little crazy), and creativity.
I like to try and schedule a little extra time with my family formals so that instead of just rushing through a bunch of group photos the bride and groom have enough time to share a few words with their mom and dad, or family members. So that they have a moment to breathe and enjoy everything with them. This give me a moment to capture the love between you! Weddings are all about love, not just the love between a bride and groom, but the love of family, and I love making the time to be sure that all relationships are beautifully captured on your wedding day! There isn’t much better than a bride joyfully laughing with her dad, or a mom proudly looking at her son.
And I love sneaking in a photo of the parents by themselves if there is time too, because their relationship should be celebrated too!