Planning a day wedding timeline

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Planning your wedding day timeline can be quite a complicated task but did you know one of the best people to speak to is your wedding photographer. After all your wedding photographer is going to be with you pretty much most of the day. So he or she should have a pretty good idea on typically how long things can take.


To help make things easy for you I’ve put together this time frame for each of the major components on the day. Your goal should be to ensure your wedding photography captures the day to tell a story of events. Remember it will be your wedding photo’s which in the end will be the one item to remind you of your special day. So it might be worthwhile doing some good research. Write yourself a list of what you would like.


Here’s a suggested wedding time line


1/ Grooms home.

The photographer will probably need approximately 45/60 minutes here.

Begin with the detail shots, following some portraits and the fun shots of boys being boys.


2/ Brides home.

90 minutes. Things take longer here. Begin with all the detail shots. The flowers, shoes, rings, dress hanging up and then onto the getting ready and people shots.


3/ The ceremony.


Outdoors weddings tend to be shorter than inside a chapel. You might want to allow 30 mins for the ceremony followed by another 30 mins of group shots.

Things always take longer so allow for it.


If however, yours is a Greek wedding things might run like this: Ceremony 1 hour, Kisses with guests 20 mins, 30 mins group shots.


4/ Location shoot.

Your location images will most probably be the ones you treasure the most. Sometimes we shoot onsite ( ie a winery wedding ). Ideally you need to allow 45 mins shooting time per location. You also need to factor in travel and parking time.


Weddings that involve the location shoot within Melbourne CBD tend to take more time as there are far more logistics to be taken care of. Maybe consider if the photographer can travel in the wedding car. This way your photographer does not have to search around for parking which can eat into photography time.


Do you want 1 or 2 locations?


5/ Reception.

You might just want the essentials a mock cutting of the cake, or you might just want the 1st half hour covered. This can be a good option as you can often get some great fly on the wall coverage of guests mingling and laughing. Once guests are seated photography can go down hill as it’s incredibly hard capturing good shots of Uncle Clive or Bessy munching on a bread roll. Perhaps its best to begin with the dance up front so you can capture fun pics of gliding and spinning across the dance floor. Shots of speeches can be difficult as people often look down. In fact you might be better giving a close relative the job of this work. As its pretty much point and shoot with the odd flash required. I’m not a big fan of wedding reception photography as I feel you are far better to put your energy into the location shoot. In fact when we design a wedding album with our clients generally there are very few reception shots. It could always pay to have a look at your friends wedding albums and that way you will get an idea on the aspects of a wedding which hold the most emotion and value.


All wedding time frames are going to vary due to travel time, type of ceremony, number of locations and time spent if any at reception.


So rather than hunt for a package and price list, you are far better mapping out your day as per the above and put together a wish list of elements. Then you are armed with what you want rather than be dictated by the photographers packages. At James Harvie Photography we deliberately spend time with each and every couple and fully map out your day. I see it as my job to give you a guiding shoulder to help build the best possible day. After all its your wedding and your one special day, so most likely you need your own unique package.



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