Friday, 5 July 2013

The Formals...

Do you do formals?
I can and will do formals, but I limit them to around a maximum of eight. They’re a fantastic family history record and will be passed from generation to generation. I limit them to eight shots as they can take a good half an hour and eat into your playtime, mingling with guests.

I always start with an every guest photo, if that’s something you want, then people can go off and have fun whilst we get on with the others...

The common groupings are:
1.) Everyone,

2.) Bride, Groom, Bride’s entire family.
3.) Bride, Groom, Groom’s entire family.
4.) Bride, Groom, Bridesmaids and ushers.

5.) Bride, Groom and both sets of parents.
6.) Bride, Groom, Bride’s parents.
7.) Bride, Groom, Groom’s parents.
8.) A Bride and Groom shot – this one is mostly set up for the guests, so they can grab a few photos for facebook, etc.
When and where do you do the formals?
Weather and light permitting, these are best done straight after the ceremony, or on arrival at the reception venue, as everyone is together, they’ve been sat down for a while, so don’t mind a little bit of standing around and not had access to the booze yet! Due to the number of people involved and the flattering nature of natural light, these photos are best done outside with plenty of space around us. If the day is overcast, then there wont be harsh highlights and squinting, if it’s sunny, then I like to look for shade, or back-light people, so they’re facing away from the sun. Knowing which way your venue faces in advance can be a big help if you want the formals in front of it.

A bit later on in the day I like to take your bridesmaids and ushers off for some fun, informal-formals...

Shall we write you a list of who we want in the formals?
Yes… It’s best to email over a list of the groupings and names a week or so in advance and also give a hard copy, or email a copy to a Best man who knows names - so I can collar them when looking for Aunt Brenda.
Do you have a big stick, to shepherd people into position, or would you like our shouty, PE teacher Best man to help?
Best man help is always of great help. Often people are reluctant to move, so extra shepherding help is gratefully received.
Do you have any pretty awesome one-liners, like “if you can’t see me, I can’t see you?”
No!! That’s not my style!
Nah… we don’t want formals, just lost of people chatting and having fun.
Fine by me, but consider having a couple of key, informal-formals, just to keep the Mums, Nans and their mantelpieces happy. For example, Bride and parents, and Groom and parents. These can be done at any time in the day.
What the Dickens is an informal-formal?!
AKA, a grab-and-grin.

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