The Groom’s Side
Sometimes, there are moments that happen on a wedding day that are not planned out, or maybe even noticed on the day of. But, a month after the wedding when you receive your wedding photos, you may realize something that you hadn’t previously.
One comment I have heard many times over the years is that there are fewer photos of the groom's parents and family compared to the bride’s family. As you can imagine, this can create some uncomfortable conversations and feelings after the wedding is over.
I want to start off by explaining how this happens and then give you some expert tips on how to nip that situation in the bud with planning and communication that happens prior to your wedding day.
First off, I promise you that it is not a photographer’s secret agenda to not take as many photos of the groom’s family! The problem is that the bride’s family (moms, sisters, grandma, aunts and even dad) are usually around while the bride is getting ready, but this isn’t necessarily the case for the groom’s family.
Since the bride’s family is physically in the same room with the bride and the photographer, it’s a natural occurrence that they are in many of the photos. The Mother of the Bride usually has her hair and makeup done with the girls (all the while, the cameras are clicking), she then helps the bride into her dress (another photo-worthy moment), and then lastly poses for casual portraits after the dress is on the bride. For the Father of the Bride, a FOB first look may be planned out as a special moment to photograph between the bride and her father. Directly after this, we may move onto the mother and father of the bride portraits. As you can see, the opportunities for photos of the bride’s family are abundant.
On the other hand, the groom will often get ready with just his groomsmen around, and no mom or dad involved. Many times as photographers, we will not even see the Mother of the Groom until the ceremony starts. Meanwhile, we have been photographing the bride's mom and other family members for hours.
As photographers, we shoot what is real life; what is happening at the moment. Unfortunately, we can’t create something that is not there. Therefore, the best way to avoid this lack of photos on the groom’s side is to have a plan in place.
The issue usually lies in a lack of planning and communication with the groom’s family to ensure they make an appearance in the groom’s room while he is getting ready. Planning for the family to be present results in face time with the camera, so the groom’s family also has special images to look back on from the wedding day.
Here are a few tips to make sure the groom’s parents are in photos before the ceremony:
Look at the bride’s schedule and see who will be with her while the photographer is there. If you notice that the groom’s side is very uneven in terms of family members, this is your chance to invite his parents to be involved (or at least make an appearance) so there are photos of them getting ready with the groom.
While the scheduling may not work out to be identical to the bride’s, at least plan for the groom’s parents to arrive for some portraits with the groom. It is ideal if the parents and groom are dressed in their wedding attire, but if that’s not possible, casual portraits are still nice to have.
If family photos are your priority, make sure the VIPs are with the groom for all of the getting ready shots, e.g. dad helping with the tie and cufflinks, or making a toast with all of the groomsmen.
One last thought is to make sure your photographer captures a stunning portrait of the groom! On the bride’s side, we will be taking a lot of time to create many options for her bridal portrait. Trust me when I say that you don’t want to forget about doing the same for the handsome man in your life!
To plan for this, I usually arrange for my second photographer to capture a portrait of the groom looking his best. I have a portrait of my husband, Phil, on our wedding day and it’s one of my most cherished photos from the day.