Beyond the Bride and Groom: How to Photograph Wedding Guests

A lot of my friends who have gotten married say that their photographer overall did a great job, but there weren’t enough photos of the guests on their wedding day. As a photographer, it is important to remember that guests are part of the celebration and a big part of the story.

4 great ways to photograph guests in candid moments:

1.  Guests arriving to the ceremony. –  Having photos of guests arriving to the ceremony adds anticipation when storytelling.

2.  Photos of guests enjoying the details of the wedding – The bride & groom (let’s be honest, probably just the bride) put in a lot of effort putting together the crafty details of the wedding.  Besides simply taking photos OF the details, take pictures of guest reactions when they see them.  The bride will appreciate this very much and give herself a high five for all her hard work.

3.  Cocktail Hour – is a great time to photograph all the guests.  Lighting is usually better at cocktail hour than at the reception. Plus guests will be SUPER happy because it is the moment they get to hit the bar. My second shooter takes photos of all the guests during cocktail hour while I am with the bride & groom taking formal portraits.

4. Guest reactions during formal events – Someone laughing, crying, or presently engaged?  Capture it!


Basically, don’t forget to capture things that the bride & groom don’t get to see on their actual wedding day. Give them a pleasant surprise when they look through their wedding photos for the very first time.

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