Wedding Photographer | How Many Hours Do You Need?

By Debra Shepperson with Relish Photography by Lee

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There is no argument over the importance of hiring a professional photographer for your wedding. The keepsakes from that day will be treasured forever. The question then becomes, how many hours of photography are needed on your wedding day? The simple answer…it depends.

When capturing moments of your beautiful day, you need to choose which ones are most important to both of you. And based on your wants, you will need to make sure your photographer is hired for enough hours to capture those details. Establishing a wedding day timeline will ensure that they are.

First, consult with your wedding planner and include the photographer when discussing the wedding day timeline. You may even want to schedule a meeting in-person. Here you will be able to make sure the photographer is hired for the correct number of hours. During this detailed discussion, you will also be able to determine what photos are most important and what should be included in the wedding album.

If your photographer will be there for 12 hours or more, you are in good shape to have the full wedding day captured at one venue. If not, most photographers will be pleased to add more hours to the contracted services.

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Be cautious if your photographer is only offering six hours of service. Typically, this will only provide coverage beginning directly before the ceremony or ending directly after the introduction at the reception. If you are okay with fewer getting ready photos, then you might consider booking 8 hours of service. If you are not interested in a first look, then you are most likely safe with 10 hours of service.

Here is a sample timeline of the typical photos that can be captured over a 12 hour period at one venue to help you stay on track.


After reviewing this 12-hour wedding day timeline, discuss with your betrothed which images must be included and build a timeline that fits your budget.

And here is a PRINTABLE timeline for you! Relish Photography sample timeline

Debra Shepperson is Co-Owner of Relish Photography by Lee, a full-service wedding and portrait photography company. To learn more about the Relish’s wedding collections and services, please visit www.relishphotosbylee.comALL PHOTOS FROM RELISH PHOTOGRAPHY BY LEE