Planning a Timeline With Your Rocky Mountain Wedding Photographer

First, a bridesmaid wanted their hair redone, and now the ring bearer has gone and momentarily misplaced the rings. Don’t worry – your Rocky Mountain wedding photographer has seen it all, and then some! 

From unseen weather changes to late starts for the ceremony, there are a TON of things that can set back your timeline on the big day, no matter how organized you are. Professional wedding photographers are used to these types of delays. They’re also an excellent resource for helping you to make sure they don’t happen at all!

Setting a timeline with your photographer helps you to stay organized on the day without missing out on any of those key shots you wanted. Here is an example of a wedding photography timeline plus some tips and tricks to help keep things moving along on schedule!


Rocky Mountain Wedding Photographer


Getting Ready: The Bride and Groom (1.5 – 2.0 hours)

Starting your wedding photos early helps to capture the full story of the day. As time goes on, there are little things about the day that you might forget. During the “Getting Ready” stage, your photographer can capture lots of small details such as your hanging dress, the rings, bouquets, and some pre-ceremony bubbly between you and the bridesmaids!


wedding photos in the rockies

Hair by Mint Salon | Make Up by Jackelyn McLean | Bridal Gown by UnVeiled Dress Co.


“First Look” Photos

Some couples like to take some “First Look” photos together before the ceremony. It’s a beautiful moment, and can often be captured more intimately this way. You should definitely plan some extra time after your “Getting Ready” photos if you’re planning on doing this.


The ceremony (15 mins – 1.5 hours)

Top tip: it’s a good idea to request that your guests do not take photos during the ceremony!

At best, they’re distracted by trying to get the perfect shot instead of focusing on the moment. At worst, guests are hopping out in front of you as you walk down the aisle or getting in the way of the professional photographer you have hired. 

When planning your timeline with your photographer, they must get an accurate estimate of the ceremony length. Some ceremonies are quite short, others run for over an hour. You should keep your photographer informed so they can accurately help you predict the rest of the photography timeline!


wedding ceremony professional photography


Formal Group & Family Portraits (30 mins – 1.0 hour)

Formal group and family portraits is another section of your wedding photography timeline that can vary quite a bit.

It’s really up to you how long you want to spend on them and how many variations you would like. The more people that you’re planning on having in these shots, the longer they will take.


formal wedding portraits rocky mountain wedding

Planning and Design by Moments by Madeleine | Floral Design by Flowers by Janie


Wedding Party & The Newlyweds (1.0 hour – 4.0 hours)

This is the part that will take the most meticulous planning because it’s likely the one you’ll least want to compromise on when the day comes. Work with your Rocky Mountain wedding photographer to figure out:


You’ll be spoiled for choice for beautiful spots no matter where you are in the Rocky Mountains. Deciding on those spots can depend on their distance from the venue, the level of accessibility, and their popularity. All of these factors will affect the timeline, so have a chat with your photographer and work out the best options.


Another aspect of the shoot that you should decide with your photographer ahead of time is the type of shots you would like. This includes various poses for formal shots, the kind of candids you would like, and any accessories (such as a veil) that may be taken on and off for different poses.


wedding photo poses



If you’re taking a wedding party along, you’ll also want to factor in time for different group shots. Many couples choose to separate the bridal party and groomsmen portraits before taking group shots of the whole wedding party. Again, make sure your photographer is aware ahead of time so they can help you factor all of these into your timeline.


winter wedding photos in the rockies


Your Reception (2.0 hours – 6.0 hours)

Hiring a Rocky Mountain wedding photographer is all about capturing the memories of your day. There are details you won’t want to forget, from the speeches and first dances to cutting the cake and lovely candids of your guests dancing the night away. Keeping your photographer around for the reception means creating an album that tells the story of your wedding from start to finish.


wedding reception photos


The steps in this timeline might vary depending on your wedding day plans. but the most important part is that you have a timeline at all. Spending time getting into the nitty-gritty details with your photographer beforehand will pay off in spades on the day – that’s a guarantee!

If you’re looking for a Rocky Mountain wedding photographer, don’t forget to check out my portfolio while you’re here!

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