bride and groom being photographed by a photographer

Okay, wedding photographers, we’ve got some wedding etiquette tips for you to help the wedding day go more smoothly, and make sure you stay professional!

Wedding Etiquette Tips for Photographer 1: Know the Family Dynamics

Familiarize yourself with the family of the couple. Are there divorced and/or remarried parents? Are there any recent deaths in the family? There’s nothing worse than calling out for grandparents just to learn that they recently passed away. We send our couples a questionnaire before the wedding that they can fill out and let us know of any family dynamics we should be aware of. Then, we make sure to have those in our notes for the wedding day. 

Knowing the family dynamics is not only helpful for the formal family portraits, but it also helps in determining the important moments to capture. Is the bride a daddy’s girl? Are the bride and her mom like Rory and Lorelei Gilmore? Are the cousins really more like siblings to the couple? Is the bride just as close to her mom as she is to her step-mom? If that’s the case, you’ll most likely want to be sure to include both in the photos of getting the bride dressed. These are things that you should be thinking about when it comes to the family dynamics of the couple you are photographing.

Wedding Etiquette Tips for Photographer 2: Don’t Drink on the Job

This wedding photography etiquette tip is going to feel pretty self-explanatory, but we’re going to talk more about it anyway. For 98% of the jobs in the world, it would not be okay to have an alcoholic beverage while on the clock, and that includes wedding photography. It might be tempting to have a mimosa with the girls or a shot of whisky with the guys while they’re getting ready – they might’ve even offered you one! Just go ahead and politely decline. It can come off as unprofessional if you are seen consuming alcohol by anybody at the wedding. It sends a message that you aren’t prioritizing your job since drinking alcohol can leave you impaired and sloppy. Just don’t do it.

Dress to Impress and also Blend In

The way you dress at a wedding is very important. Following this wedding photography etiquette says a lot about you and your brand. You want to be professional, yet comfortable, and you also do not want to stand out. You don’t have to wear a fancy dress or a 3-piece suit, but you should look put together. Athleisure wear? Not the time. That’s more appropriate for an engagement session, but not a wedding. 

Now let’s talk about colors. Neutrals are very safe colors. You don’t want to risk wearing a color that’s going to make you stick out like a sore thumb or a color that’s going to reflect onto the bride and groom and create a terrible color cast. If you know the wedding color scheme, it’s also not a bad idea to go with those colors, if you have them.

Don’t be Late

Believe it or not, we’ve witnessed a wedding vendor show up late with a fresh frappuccino in her hand (for herself, not the bride). Don’t be that lady. What’s that saying? Early is on time and on time is late? Yeah, that should be your motto. Being early or right on time makes a great impression. It says you are reliable and that you care about the timeline. If you know you are someone who tends to run late, add in buffer time. If you know there’s a chance you could hit some traffic, leave early to account for that. It’s always better to plan for extra time, not need it, and arrive early than not plan for it and arrive late.

To recap- know the family dynamics, don’t drink on the job, dress to impress, and don’t be late. We hope these wedding etiquette tips for photographers were helpful for you. If you have some of your own, feel free to drop them in the comments. We’d love to hear from you!

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Wedding Etiquette Tips for Photographers