Planning weddings entails a lot of hard work. This includes planning the photography for the wedding itself. Even if you’ve chosen your Northern Virginia wedding photographer months ahead, this doesn’t mean they should sit idly until the big day; it is an unspoken rule to give them a shot list.
While many wedding photographers have lots of experience in capturing the moment, they should also be given a list of shots to take. This is to make sure that the photographer’s concept and your concept meet at a common ground. That being said, here are the things you should keep in mind.
What Not to Request from the Photographer
There are some things you have to avoid telling your photographer when planning a shot list with them. Here are the most important don’ts of making a shot list:
- Recreating stock image and Pinterest photos
The problem with stock photos is that they create an idealized image of a wedding. Photographers want to create their own style of photo, not copy other photographers.
- Asking for the raw files from the photographer
Photographers are hired based on their skills as both photographer and editor. Asking for the photographer to provide the raw photos and outtakes would be an affront to them.
- Requesting too much photo-editing of a picture
While photographers can edit photos, overdoing it spoils the photos too much. Sure, you can’t have your own celebrity type wedding, but every wedding album is unique, and that’s what gives it its charm. Trust your lensman to put forward their creative wedding photography skills and give you shots that you’ll love.
- Giving a specific shot list that leaves no room for candid moments
As Forrest Gump said, “Life is like a box of chocolates, you never know what you’re gonna get.” A lot of surprising moments can occur, like a flower girl doing a twirl down the aisle, or an impromptu speech from the bride’s brother. Moments like these please a photographer a lot, so they tend to snap away. Who knows, you might like the way they take the photo too!
Other Things to Give the Photographer
Besides knowing want not-to-do when making your list, here are some other things you can give your Northern Virginia wedding photographer as a supplement to your list:
- A list of names of the attendees
The shot list should have names of every person, and their relation to the couple. This will come in handy when the photographer starts calling names. There will be quick facilitation of the shots once this happens. Make sure to give them a list of the entire immediate families, but don’t make it too long and include even friends from grade school.
- Proper grouping of everyone in the list
Grouping of everybody on the list is handy when making the shots. Here’s a sample grouping of a wedding entourage for the purpose of taking photos:
- The bride’s family
- The groom’s family
- The bride’s school friends
- The groom’s school friends
- The bride’s workmates
- The groom’s workmates
- Among others
Certain groupings can be modified or merged. A good example is if both the bride and groom went to the same school, or come from the same office.
- Names and phone numbers of wedding day personnel
To have a staff working in unison, they must be familiar with each other. That’s why your wedding photographer would appreciate you giving the name and numbers of the wedding planners, the DJ, and everyone else in the staff. In this way, they will be able to coordinate with one another, and also think of extra shots to take.
Plan Your Wedding Photography with Precision
Wedding photographers work in unique ways. That is why, from the start, you should already have a meticulous shot list for your big day. With the above tips in mind, you can confidently interview your local wedding photographers and pick out the one who will best interpret your wedding vision.