is an Atlanta Wedding Photographer who values folks' stories, and is passionate about capturing Genuine, Emotional, and Timeless photographs on their wedding day and beyond. Rocheal captures weddings around Atlanta, Georgia, as well as destination weddings around the world.






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Sample Family Portrait List for Weddings

Ah, family pictures… The timing after the ceremony, managing kids, gathering everyone, dealing with venue constraints, and navigating potential family drama – it can be quite a challenge! (How do you ensure everyone feels included, right?!) I totally understand, and you’re not alone in this. It’s crucial because Family Portrait Time can overshadow Bride and Groom portraits if handled poorly by an inexperienced photographer. (And nobody wants that!) You’re eager to learn how to handle family pictures at your wedding, and I’ve got your back. At the bottom I have a sample Family Portrait List for weddings! For now, onto your most FAQs!

Q- I have a big family. How do I incorporate everyone?

A: No problem! I begin by organizing the largest group (to ensure everyone is included) and then gradually adjust the groupings from there.

People have a tendency to wander, especially when there are cocktails and hors d’oeuvres ready. Beginning with the largest group allows us to gather everyone before they start roaming. Even for those notorious wanderers (lookin’ at you, Uncle Bob!), who can’t resist moving around: at least we capture that crucial shot at the start before they head off to the bar. 😉

Sample Family Portrait List for Weddings

Q- What if our parents are divorced?

A: I understand the challenge this can pose, but there’s a simple solution. Before your wedding you and I will discuss any specific considerations or family dynamics I should be aware of. In many cases, divorced adults can set aside personal differences for such a significant occasion.

(These guys aren’t divorced; I’m justing using this as an example.)

When we have a divorce in the family, the bride and groom go front and center with the parents on either side. This safe pose will keep guards down so everyone can feel comfortable during photos.
To include everyone, we typically pose mom, dad, and spouses first. Then we’ll peel away spouses and do a shot with just mom and dad.

Q- We’re on a really tight timeline… How do I make all the shots happen??

A: I plan strategically! Typically, I aim to keep the family groupings post-ceremony to about 10-12 individual shots. In some cases, we’ve managed larger groupings of 20 or more, but on average, it’s usually around half that number.

Try to plan for groupings rather than a bunch of individuals. Do you absolutely require individual photos of every cousin? Most likely not. However, if you do, let’s have a conversation so we can plan accordingly and strategically for that!

Q- Can I get any family shots before my ceremony?

A: Sure, but usually only for the most intimate moments. Let me elaborate…

Photos of your parents, grandparents, siblings, and your wedding party are likely some of the photos you care most about.

At the start of the day, these individuals will be dispersed. Mom might not be with Dad, and your siblings are probably divided between the wedding parties. It’s expected that people will be scattered around. However, after the ceremony, everyone will gather in one location, making it much simpler.

Also, consider your wedding album. When you’re retelling the story of your wedding day, consistency in aesthetics is key in an album. Having photos with your parents and grandparents outside the ceremony space’s entrance, and then different shots with everyone else at the altar, can create a disjointed look. It’s often preferable for all family pictures to be captured in one location, with uniform lighting and a consistent background for a beautiful album layout.

Sample Family Portrait List for Weddings

Q- What would a sample family portrait list for weddings look like?

A: Sure! Subtract aunts, uncles, and cousins for a tighter timeline and/or if they make for a super large group. (You can always get those during the reception!!)

  1. Group 1: Both sides- Everyone!
    • Bride and groom’s parents, grandparents, siblings, (maybe aunts, uncles, cousins if this isn’t a large group)
  2. Group 2: Just Bride’s Everyone
    • Bride’s parents, grandparents, siblings (maybe aunts & uncles, cousins if you’re super close and this isn’t a large group)
  3. Group 3: Bride’s Immediate
    • Bride’s parents, grandparents, siblings
  4. (Everyone step aside real quick so we can get a shot of your grandparents alone!🥰)
  5. Group 4: Bride’s Close
    • Bride’s parents, siblings
  6. Group 5: Bride’s parents
  7. (Just a shot with the bride’s parents alone– because they deserve it!)

Copy and paste for the Groom’s side. 👏

As you peel people away, send them to cocktail hour!

QUICK TIPS FOR SUCCESS: Sample Family Portrait List for Weddings

  • Assign someone to text EVERYONE involved in your family photos, reminding them to stay put after the ceremony instead of heading straight to the cocktail hour! You won’t have the time to track down Uncle Bob, and we both know he’ll be off and running as soon as the ceremony concludes.
  • If you have more than 12, or so groupings, plan for those to happen at the reception
    • Think: step-family, extended family, work friends, college friends, etc.
  • Plan if you want to go for “Symmetry” or “Sides” for your photos so that I immediately know how to group your family. (I totally prefer symmetry!)
    • If “symmetry”, we will place people on either side of the bride and groom, focusing on balance.
    • If “sides”, we will keep the groom’s family on his side, and the bride’s family on hers, NOT focusing on balance.

I hope this helps!


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