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  • Writer's pictureSirena White-Singleton


First and foremost...Congratulations!

Now, in the midst of the excitement, happiness, and anticipation you're suddenly overwhelmed with a feeling of stress because you have to plan a wedding. There is so much to do, and all you really want to do is just marry the love of your life and begin your happily ever after. Once you have booked your wedding venue and set your wedding date the next set is normally getting the rest of your wedding vendors booked. Most vendors like myself will always ask, " How many hours of coverage you will need for your wedding day." Normally, most brides-to-be and grooms-to-be also say, "We don't know. We just want some pictures of us before the ceremony getting ready, the ceremony, the reception, and of course, family pictures. So, I'm getting just a couple hours." Well, if you want all of that you will definitely need for your wedding photographer to be there for more than a couple of hours...two hours in my book. Let's demystify the wedding timeline debacle.

There is a common misconception in the wedding industry that six hours is enough coverage for your wedding photography. Then there is the extreme of needing 12 hours of coverage and that's just wedding coverage overload! In many cases, six hours are not enough for complete wedding coverage and 12 hours is too much.

Many brides wonder how many hours they should hire their wedding photographer.

The quick answer for most weddings: 8 hours. The majority of weddings and receptions last about 6 hours, and you’ll want 2 hours before the ceremony to take photos of you getting ready, or photographs of you and your immediate family and bridal party.

The technical answer: Count back from the time of your send-off to 2-3 hours before your ceremony. Depending on your schedule, this will be the total amount of minimum hours needed for your wedding photography coverage.

**Please see the wedding day scheduling breakdown below.**

“I don’t want photos of me getting ready!”

You may not want those photos today, but trust me, you’ll want them in 10 years. Several favorite moments happen during the “Getting Ready” process as you interact with your closest family members and friends. The photos in this post is a great example of the photos you’ll miss if your photographer isn’t hired before the ceremony.

“I don’t need photos of us dancing the entire night!”

When I first started photographing weddings, some brides didn’t book through the end of the reception.

The brides always had a story of how incredible the dance floor was after I left.

“I should have listened to your advice! After you left, the groom's father took his jacket off, and cut a rug on the dance floor! He out danced some of the groomsmen! I wish you could have been there to take photos!”

True story — word for word.

What’s even more important is that the professional photographer is there for the photos of the send-off. Time and time again, these are some of the couple’s favorite images because it is the ultimate peak of the happiness on the wedding day. Those images celebrate what the entire day is about, and you don’t want your photographer to miss those moments.

“I’ll just tell the photographer to stay longer if the reception party goes overtime.”

Many times, photographers have overtime fees, which is discussed in the contract. It’s smarter to have enough photography coverage earlier, then pay overtime.

I hope this helps you as you are planning your wedding , especially your wedding photography!

I would love to capture your love story. Just shoot me an email at!

I wanna hear all the details about your wedding!

Happy Wedding Planning!

"Weddings are important because they celebrate life and possibility."

-Anne Hathaway


#weddingplanning #weddingtimeline #weddingplanningtips #wedding #timeline

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