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The Best Times to Take Photos

bride and groom kissing under tree at best times to take photosWhile a good photographer is going to make any time of day work for stunning wedding photos, there are definitely ideal times. These ideal times with the perfect lighting are optimal for your posed portraits.

You have probably heard of “golden hour”. This is the time of day just after the sun rises or immediately before the sun sets. It’s aptly named because of the soft, golden glow of light. If you want that coveted golden glow in your portraits, then timing is crucial. Work with your photographer to time your portraits just right.

If you are up for it, you can plan to have your portraits taken at sunrise before your ceremony (or the day after your ceremony). But, understandably, most people won’t want to get up way before the sun to get ready for a sunrise session. That leaves sunset for your golden hour portraits. To help with the timing of this, you can schedule your ceremony well before or just after sunset. This will allow plenty of time to fit in your portraits with the sun setting in the backdrop.

So now you know the best time to take portraits. When is the worst time of day? High noon, hands down. While it’s not impossible to take great photos at this time, the shadows are tricky to work with. Also, this will be when the temperature is the highest too. Again, work with your photographer to find a good time of day to schedule your bride and groom portraits (even if you aren’t worried about golden hour).

If your day ends up overcast, don’t fret! Overcast skies are actually great for photography. They may even provide you with more location options since shadows aren’t something to contend with as much.

To ensure the best photography at the optimal time of day, we recommend walking through your venue. Ideally you can do a walk through of your venue just a day or two before your wedding with your photographer. You will get the best idea of what lighting looks like in different locations of the venue at specific times of day.

To get your dreamy bride and groom portraits you can take on of three approaches.

  1. If you have a must have location you want your portraits at:
    Be willing to work with your photographer to find the best time of day for the ideal lighting at that specific location.
  2. If you have a specific time of day you want portraits taken:
    Be willing to work with your photographer to find the best location based on lighting during your chosen time.
  3. If you just want the best possible portraits:
    Be willing to work with your photographer to find the ideal time of day and location for your portraits.


Read our blog post on how to streamline family wedding portraits to get you through those photos and back to celebrating with your guests.


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