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How long should pictures take after wedding ceremony?

Your wedding day is undoubtedly one of the most special and priceless moments in your life. It’s a day to celebrate your love and commitment with your partner. One crucial aspect of the day is your wedding photos. A picture is worth a thousand words, and your wedding pictures will be a keepsake to cherish for years to come.

Wedding photos are often scheduled to take place after the wedding ceremony, but how long should that process take? Well, there is no fixed timeline as every wedding is unique. Several factors determine how long picture-taking takes, which we will explore in-depth in this post.

First, it’s essential to have a clear timeline for your wedding day before considering how long picture-taking will last after your ceremony. A timeline plot will help your photographer add in time for travel, lighting adjustments, set-up, breaks, among other factors.

Factors That Determine How Long Picture-Taking Takes

Here are some of the factors that determine how long the picture-taking process should take:

Number of Group Photos

The number of group photos you plan to take after the ceremony has a significant impact on the time it will take. Try to limit the number of groups and let your photographer know beforehand, which groups you plan to take. Taking pictures with the extended family, friends, and bridal party members can take up to 30-40 minutes.

Location of the Venue

The location of your wedding venue also plays a crucial role in determining how long your photoshoot will take. If your reception venue requires travel, your photographer will need to consider travel time in their schedule. Your photographer will need time to plan for transportation, set-up equipment, and plan for different shooting locations if necessary.

Wedding Portraits

If you plan to take wedding portraits in between, before, or after the ceremony, it’s essential to factor that in the timeline. Taking wedding portraits can take up to 20-30 minutes depending on the size of the bridal party and how many locations you want to use as backdrops.

First Look

A first look is a moment when the bride and groom see each other for the first time before the wedding ceremony. A first look is an excellent opportunity for your photographer to capture intimate and emotional moments between the bride and groom, which can take around 20-30 minutes.

Time of Day

The time of day can greatly impact the quality of your pictures, and your photographer needs to plan accordingly. Pictures taken during golden hour (the period shortly before sunset) or at dawn tend to be the best due to the soft and warm lighting. Photoshoots during the day can be challenging due to the bright lights that cause harsh shadows and squinting eyes.

Tips for a Successful Photoshoot

Now that you understand the factors that determine how long picture taking takes, here are some tips for a successful photoshoot:

Have a Timeline Plot

As mentioned earlier, have a clear timeline plot for your wedding day. Share the timeline with your photographer beforehand to factor in travel time, breaks, and meal breaks.

Limit the Number of Group Photos

Don’t take too many photos with the large group, assign someone familiar with the group to organize participants, and have a list of groups that need to be taken.

Plan the Photoshoot Locations

Select the location for your photoshoot beforehand to avoid confusion and save time. Discuss with your photographer about the locations that will be used for the photoshoot.

Schedule the Timing Carefully

Schedule the time for your photo session to take place around the golden hour period if possible for softer lighting and more romantic atmosphere.

Have a First Look

If possible, plan for a first look before the ceremony to save time and improve the quality of your photos.


Taking wedding pictures is a crucial process to capture the memories you will cherish for a lifetime. The amount of time it takes depends on several factors, including the size of your group photos, the location of your venue, the time of day, and your photoshoot location.

As a couple, it’s essential to work closely with your photographer to ensure you get the best results from your photoshoot. By following the tips outlined in this post, you are sure to achieve an efficient and successful photoshoot that truly captures the magic of your wedding day.


Should you take photos before or after the wedding ceremony?

The traditional way of having a wedding is usually formal and structured. Before the ceremony, the bride and groom often get ready in separate locations and are not allowed to see each other until the ceremony commences. However, with modernization, traditions and practices around weddings have changed dramatically. Taking photos before the actual ceremony is becoming a new norm, which gives the couple freedom and time to take photos before the wedding celebration actually begins. But the question is, what is the best time to take photos? Before or after the ceremony? There are pros and cons to both options.

Taking photos before the wedding is a newer practice that is becoming increasingly popular. One of the benefits of this approach is that the couple can take photos at a more relaxed pace, without rushing off to socialize with guests. It also helps to calm wedding-day nerves and gives the couple more time to spend together before the ceremony officially begins. Pre-ceremony photos also mean that everyone looks fresh and put-together, as the makeup and hair is still intact. You’ll additionally have your guests’ undivided attention post-ceremony, without having to worry about the chaos of photographs interrupting the flow of the day.

On the other hand, taking photos after the wedding ceremony is a long-standing tradition. The emotional intensity of the ceremony often shows on everyone’s faces, which makes for beautiful and memorable pictures. Additionally, guests, who are already excited, are often allowed to participate in some candid photos, which perhaps may not be possible earlier. However, post-ceremony photos have one major downside: they often take up a considerable amount of time, which can eat into the celebratory moments of the day. Guests might start getting restless and hungry, while the wedding couple has to focus on taking photos.

The decision to take photos before or after the ceremony is up to the couple. It depends on their preferences, budget, and flexibility on the day of the wedding. There are pros and cons to both options, but the important thing is for the couple to enjoy their special day. Whether they opt for pre- or post-ceremony photos, it is important to hire an experienced and professional photographer, who can capture beautiful moments that the couple can cherish for years to come.

Do people take wedding photos after the wedding?

Most couples look forward to capturing their special moments on their wedding day. From the pre-wedding photo shoots to the actual wedding ceremony, there are plenty of opportunities to take some great photos. But what about after the wedding day? Do people still take wedding photos even after the ceremony is over?

The answer is yes; many couples opt to have a photoshoot after their wedding day, also known as a post-wedding photoshoot or a trash the dress photoshoot. This trend is gaining popularity, and it involves taking a series of photos after the wedding day is over, usually wearing the same wedding dress and suit. The photoshoot can be done the day after the wedding, a few weeks, or even years after the marriage ceremony.

One of the key reasons why couples choose to have a post-wedding photoshoot is to capture moments they may have missed on their wedding day. On the wedding day, the couple may be busy entertaining guests, so they may miss out on certain photo opportunities. A post-wedding photoshoot allows the couple to relax and have more time to take photos in a more relaxed and less rushed environment.

Another reason why couples choose to have a post-wedding photoshoot is to add some variety to their wedding album. They may want some photos taken outdoors in a location that was not possible on their wedding day, or they may have a new idea for a particular pose.

The post-wedding photoshoot can also be a great opportunity to take some romantic, non-traditional photos. Couples can get more creative and try different ideas that they may not have been able to do on their wedding day. For instance, they can get some shots while dancing or hiking, or even underwater.

While the wedding day is a special occasion to capture beautiful and memorable moments, post-wedding photoshoots give couples the chance to extend those moments. Even after the day is over, post-wedding photoshoots allow couples to make more memories, embrace new ideas, and relax and celebrate their love all over again.

Are wedding photos taken after the ceremony?

Yes, typically wedding photos are taken after the ceremony. This is because there is a certain order of events during a wedding day, and the ceremony is usually one of the first events. Once the ceremony is over and the happy couple has officially tied the knot, it is time for post-ceremony celebrations to take place. However, before the reception takes place, it is common for the bride and groom to take photos with their wedding party and family members.

This time period is commonly referred to as “cocktail hour”, as guests are usually treated to hors d’oeuvres and drinks while the newlyweds take their photos. If the couple has opted for a “first look” before the ceremony, some of these photos may have already been taken. However, the majority of the formal photos typically take place after the ceremony.

The timing for wedding photos is often coordinated with the couple’s wedding day timeline. Usually, the wedding photographer will work with the couple to create a timeline that ensures enough time for all the necessary photos to be taken, while also allowing the bride and groom to make the most of their day.

It is worth noting that some couples opt for alternative wedding day timelines. For example, some couples may choose to take all of their photos before the ceremony to ensure they can enjoy the reception with their guests. However, this is not as common as taking photos after the ceremony.

Wedding photos are typically taken after the ceremony during the cocktail hour. This allows the bride, groom, and their wedding party and family members to take formal photos before the reception begins. The timing of wedding photos is usually coordinated with the couple’s wedding day timeline to ensure that enough time is allocated for photos while still allowing the couple to enjoy their day.