Tropical beach wedding in the Dominican Republic
Picture this scenario for a moment: It’s your wedding day! You’re surrounded by people you love, you look AMAZING, and all the important details you’ve planned out months in advance are in place. You look across the room at your photographer — the one you researched, met with and believe in — and while staring down a mile-long shot list on a piece of paper, they are completely missing the fleeting moments of significance and joy happening all around you!

Not gonna lie, that image kind of turns my stomach. I never want any bride (or any photographer) to experience it … and that’s why I hope to convince you to ditch the shot list and trust your photographer!

I can hear you wondering, “If I can’t give my photographer an extensive shot list, how can I be sure they will get all of the important shots?” Here are 4 things I recommend doing instead of writing a long shot list:

1 -- DO talk to your photographer
Get to know them so they can also get to know YOU! I like to send out a “Getting to Know You” questionnaire when a couple first books me for their wedding. This gives me insight into their relationship, their likes and dislikes, and their background. I also love when I have a chance to get to know a couple better by photographing their engagement shoot. All of this communication and connection becomes invaluable on the wedding day, because I already know which aspects of the day are most important to the bride and groom. I’m able to capture those details and moments naturally throughout the day, without missing the unexpected moments that are so significant in telling their unique story.
Photographer captures the bride & groom on a pier
2 -- DO strategize an ideal timeline with your photographer
I like to work out the photography timeline for the day with the wedding planner and the couple to guarantee there is enough time allotted for capturing your vision of the day. You can click here to read my blog post about creating an ideal wedding day timeline. The timeline is a crucial resource for any photographer. It lets us know about the important planned moments throughout the day, ensuring we can shoot them in a creative and inspired way.

3 -- DO tell your photographer about any unique aspects of your wedding
There may be some specific details of your wedding day that really matter to you, but that your photographer may not naturally expect. THESE are the details to add to a brief list for your photographer. For example, if your grandfather is reading out of a generations-old family Bible, let your photographer know! On the “Final Details” form I ask my clients to fill out, there are spaces for meaningful details that I should be made aware of as I capture the day.
Boho bride & bridesmaid with vibrant floral bouquets
Wedding photographer shooting a boho bride & bridesmaid
4 -- DO trust your photographer
Remember, when you hire a photographer, you are hiring an artist with a specific eye and heart. When looking at different photographers make sure you hire one whose photos inspire you to FEEL something. You want to resonate with how they see and capture the world around them. When you find that connection, you can trust they will capture the important shots of your wedding day in a way that you love. Trust is of utmost important in your relationship with your photographer. If we have your trust, we do not take it lightly. I work extremely hard throughout the day to make sure every detail and moment is captured in order to preserve the memories of the most important day of your life.

Ditching a shot-list and choosing to trust the expertise of your photographer not only gives us the freedom to capture the candid, life-filled moments happening all throughout the day but it also gives YOU the space to relax and enjoy every single one of those moments without having to stress over details that aren’t yours to carry. Your photographer should be trained in the art of paying attention and all you should have to do is trust in their eye and art and live fully in each incredible moment!
------> Because trusting your photographer is essential, you need to be sure you find the RIGHT photographer for you! Click here to download a FREE checklist of 12 important questions you should be asking any potential wedding photographers you meet with! We've created a convenient form for you to print and take along as you talk with photographers. Make this big decision a little easier! Download your copy today!
Why ditching the shot list will make your wedding photos even better!
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