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Ultimate Wedding Photography Shot List

Updated: Feb 7, 2022

wedding cake photo, pink flowers on cake


What you need to capturing everything on that special day.


When I started capturing weddings, I had no idea what the required shots were. Sure, I knew I needed to take a picture of the bride & groom, the cake, dancing, etc., but what else? When was I supposed to be capturing and when should I give them space?

I went on to watch dozens and dozens of Youtube videos. In fact, I still do! I also asked a lot of questions. I didn’t just ask Google, but I asked other photographers and videographers what they do during a wedding day.

Here is a collaboration of all that I have learned from many different Youtubers and other creators.


Now, before you read through this list, take good notes, but also remember that not every wedding is the same. You will have to adjust this list for if it is an elopement styled wedding or maybe if it is an 8-10 hour wedding. Remember to have good communication with your clients. Do what they want. However, in the end this is always a good guide to come back too.


Ultimate Wedding Photography Shot List:


  • Invitation, program, special signs, & gifts

  • Wedding rings

  • Outfit accessories like shoes, cuff links, or jewelry

  • Bouquet, corsages, boutonnieres

wedding ring photo

getting ready wedding photo


  • Groom(s) & Bride(s) and bridesmaids & Groomsmen getting ready

  • Group shots with bridal party (getting ready & dressed)

  • Wedding dress (best if in natural light)



  • Couple alone for first look

  • Bride(s) and bridesmaids/flower girls

  • Groom(s) and groomsmen/ring bearer

surprised groom, first look photo



makenzi starr decor wedding photo

  • Venue shots including ceremony site, flowers, interior, and exterior details

  • Bridal party waiting inside venue

  • Guests

  • Bridal party entrance

  • Bride or Groom walking down the aisle

  • Bride or Groom's reaction

  • Father/mother giving bride/groom away

  • Exchanging of vows

  • Exchanging of the rings

  • The first kiss as a married couple and the moment after

  • Signing the marriage certificate

  • The recessional (couple walking back up the aisle)



*Work largest to smallest

  • Big group first (Everyone)

  • Everyone who came for the bride/groom and then vise versa

  • Grandparents

  • Immediate family on each side

  • Just siblings on each side

  • Just parents on each side (can do one parent each as well)

  • Both parents

  • Couple with children (all the grandkids/nieces/nephew or their own kids if applicable)

  • Couple with bridesmaids/groomsmen

  • Couple with entire wedding party

  • Bride(s) with bridesmaids/maid of honor

  • Groom(s) and groomsmen/best man

  • The couple (Make sure you have at least 30-45 min for just the couple)

pink bridesmaid dresses



indoor wedding decor photo

  • Details and room decor shots, including table settings, place cards, favors, centerpieces, etc.

  • Wedding cake detail shots

  • Grand entrance

  • Toasts and speeches

  • Cake cutting

  • The first dance

  • Bride(s) dancing with father / groom(s) dancing with mother

  • Couple mingling with guests

  • Guests dancing

  • Musicians, singers, DJ

  • Grand exit


wedding exit photo, bubble exit

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