Wedding Photography Shot List

A wedding photography shot list can be a great tool for communicating between the photographer and the bride and groom. Use this one to check off the selection of “must-have” poses. Add notes to indicate the location for each shot, and possibly the style of photography (e.g., formal or candid) expected for each one.

wedding photography pose list
© Peter Ainley


Remember, there won’t be time to take all of these pictures! The bride and groom should work on the wedding photography pose list with the photographer to determine priorities that will fit within the available time.

Events before the wedding

  • Engagement
  • Shower
  • Bachelor Party
  • Rehearsal Dinner


Preparation on the Wedding Day

The Bride:

  • Bride and bridesmaids getting hair done
  • Bride having makeup applied
  • Bridal gown hanging or draped over chair
  • Bride in front of mirror
  • Bride looking out window
  • Bridesmaids fastening the dress
  • Bride embracing parent(s)
  • Bride adjusting mother’s corsage
  • Close-up of necklace, or other detail of bridal attire
  • Bride’s shoes peeking out from under dress
  • Close-up of bridal bouquet
  • Bride putting on garter


The Groom:

  • Groom and groomsmen getting ready
  • Groom relaxing with the groomsman
  • Groom adjusting father’s boutonniere
  • Parent or Best Man adjusting groom’s tie
  • Groom embracing parent(s)


Wedding Ceremony

  • Exterior of the ceremony location
  • Guests entering
  • Parents being seated
  • Grandparents being seated
  • Congregation of guest shot from the groom’s perspective
  • Officiant
  • Musicians
  • Altar
  • Pew decorations
  • Groom waiting at the altar
  • Groom with Best Man at the altar
  • Groom with Best Man and groomsmen at the altar
  • Flower girl walking down aisle
  • Ring bearer walking down aisle
  • Maid of Honor walking down aisle
  • Bridesmaids walking down aisle
  • Bride being escorted down aisle – from front
  • Bride being escorted down aisle – from behind
  • Parent embracing bride at the end of the aisle
  • Parent lifting bride’s veil at the end of the aisle
  • Officiant speaking to bride and groom
  • Exchange of vows
  • Exchange of rings
  • Unity ceremony
  • Kiss
  • Details of any special cultural ceremony
  • Signing of register
  • Announcement of bride and groom
  • Bride and groom walking back up the aisle together
  • Bride and groom exiting ceremony site
  • Throwing of rice, confetti or blowing of bubbles at bride and groom
  • Bride and groom being greeted by guests
  • Group shot of all guests (on stairs, if possible)
  • Bride and groom getting into car to leave ceremony
  • Bride and groom’s car driving away


Family and Bridal Party Portraits

  • Bride: full length
  • Bride from the back, to highlight gown
  • Bride and groom
  • Bride and groom with bridal party
  • Bride and groom with flower girl and ring bearer
  • Bride with groomsmen
  • Groom with bridesmaids
  • Bride and groom with bride’s family
  • Bride and groom with groom’s family
  • Bride with her parents
  • Groom with his parents
  • Bride and groom with all parents
  • Bride and groom with combined family



  • Overall picture of reception hall
  • A specific aspect of the decorations (specify)
  • Entrance of the bride and groom
  • A table centerpiece
  • A place setting
  • A dinner serving
  • Head table
  • Speeches and toasts
  • Kiss between bride and groom
  • Musicians or DJ
  • First dance
  • Father-daughter dance
  • Mother-son dance
  • The cake
  • Cake cutting
  • Bride and groom feeding cake to each other
  • Bouquet toss
  • Garter toss
  • Bride with college friends
  • Groom with college friends
  • Getaway car
  • Bride and groom leaving in getaway car

Feel free to customize this wedding photography shot list to suit your needs, adding notes on locations or photography styles, as appropriate.

You may want to review my wedding photography checklist for the photographer.

You may want to review my wedding photography checklist for the bride and groom.