The Only Wedding Photography Shot List Template You’ll Ever Need

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Why do I need a wedding photography shot list template?

Good question.

The shot list is an essential document to both the couple and the photographer.


Whilst a lot of photographers will just choose to remember the shots that they want to take throughout the day, I personally don’t think this is the best approach to a day that is so monumental to the couple.

Yes the photographer will have the classic shots in mind and that may be enough for some weddings but how on earth will the photographer know that the bride is wearing jewellery that has great sentimental value that she wants some great photos of.

Answer: They won’t and the couple will end up with no photos of that piece of jewellery, something that might be very important to the couple.

For photographers, mistakes like this can easily be avoided with a simple consultation with the couple.

Tell them what shots you have in mind, (ahem, the template below!) what they think of your ideas, how important the individual idea are and if they have any special requests.

The Couple

For a lot of couples the photography is one of the most important part of the wedding planning process to get right.

What better way to capture the special moments of the big day than through photos?

Once you have found your photographer, a good wedding photography shot list template can be a great tool.

If they haven’t approached you with a detailed shot list and asked if you have any special requests, you may want to approach them with the shot list.

A good photographer will gladly accept this and will be of great use to them.

Use our template below to highlight to your photographer what are absolute musts and if you have any special requests.

One awesome wedding photography shot list template coming up!

Getting ready

The Bride

  • Hair and Makeup :
      • Brushes
      • The makeup artist/s doing their thing!
      • Hairdressers doing their thing!
      • Closeups of subject including eyelashes, lips, smiles, nails and any other intricate details
  • Bridesmaids getting their hair and make up done
  • Bridesmaids having fun
  • Bride and bridesmaids in any special gowns or shirts
  • Brides accessories before putting them on and then after including:
      • Shoes
      • Appropriate lace (this may be a matter of taste)
      • The dress
      • The veil
      • Jewellery
      • Any other special accessories or garments such as embroidered handkerchiefs etc.
  • Special or unique bridesmaid accessories
  • Close ups of the bouquet/s and brooches
  • Bride putting on her dress with help from bridesmaids and mother
  • Mother fastening the dress up
  • Mother helping with jewellery
  • Mother placing the veil on the bride
  • Close ups of dress details
  •  Full shot of the bride in her dress
  • Close up of the bride holding her bouquet 
  • Mother kissing the bride
  • Mother reacting to seeing her daughter in her dress with all of her accessories
  • Bridesmaids reacting to the bride in her dress with all of her accessories
  • Father’s reaction to the bride in her dress with all of her accessories
  • Mother and bride portrait
  • Father and bride portrait
  • Bride helping her parents with corsage and button hole
  • The bride spending a moment alone (contemplating what’s to come)

The Groom

  • Groom and groomsmen having fun, usually with an activity of some sort, golf, snooker, cards etc.
  • Groom’s suit hanging up
  • Close ups of any accessories such as:
      • Ties
      • Cuff links
      • Suit chains
      • Shoes
      • Flasks
      • Personalised items such as a handkerchief
      • Pocket squares
      • Boutonniere
  • The groom doing his hair
  • The groom shaving
  • The groom getting dressed
  • The groomsmen teasing the groom
  • The groomsmen getting dressed and adding accessories
  • The groomsmen helping each other with accessories such as ties
  • Father adding finishing touch to groom’s suit
  • Father’s reaction to groom in his suit with all of his accessories
  • Groomsmens’ reaction to groom in his suit with all of his accessories
  • Groom and best man relaxing in hotel room before the ceremony
  • Groom spending moment alone (again, contemplating what’s to come)


This is the time after the bride and groom have got ready and before the ceremony.

The Bride

  • Bride with individual bridesmaids
  • Bride with all of the bridesmaids
  • Bride with maid of honour
  • Bride with flower girls and page boys
  • Bride with her Mother
  • Bride with her Father
  • Bride with both her Mother and Father together
  • Bride with her siblings individually
  • Bride with her siblings as a group
  • Bride with her parents and any siblings
  • Bride with her grandparents
  • Bride with her children
  • Bride with her whole family
  • Creative shots of the bride and bridesmaids
  • The bride alone including:
      • Closeups of the details such as:
          • Hair
          • Smile
          • Veil
          • Brooches
      • Waist up shot, front, back and sides
      • 3/4 shot, front, back and sides
      • Full length, front, back and sides
  • Bride with any other important guests

The Groom

  • Groom with each groomsmen individually
  • Groom with groomsmen as a group
  • Groom with his best man
  • Groom with groomsmen and ushers
  • Groom with ring bearers
  • Groom with his Mother
  • Groom with his Father
  • Groom with both his Mother and Father together
  • Groom with his siblings individually
  • Groom with his siblings as a group
  • Groom with his parents and siblings as a group
  • Groom with his grandparents
  • Groom with his children
  • Groom with his whole family
  • Creative shots of the groom and the groomsmen
  • The groom alone including:
      • Closeups of:
          • Smile
          • Other poses
          • Suit details
          • Lapel pin
          • Cuff links
          • ties
          • other smaller details on the groom’s person
      • Waist up shot, front, back and sides
      • 3/4 shot, front, back and sides
      • Full length shot, front, back and sides
  • Groom with other important guests

The Journey and the Arrival


  • Guests arriving at the venue
  • Guests converging into venue
  • Arrival of special guests in unique vehicles, limos for example
  • Wedding guests mingling

The Groom

  • Groom and best man getting into transportation
  • Groom with best man and groomsmen if present in their transportation having fun
  • Groom and best man arriving at venue
  • Groom getting out of transportation
  • Best man getting out of transportation
  • Groom pep talk with groomsmen
  • Groom mingling with guests

The Bride

  • Bride getting into transportation with Father
  • Bride anticipating the ceremony
  • Bride arriving at the venue
  • Bride getting out of transportation
  • Father getting out of transportation
  • Bride pep talk with bridesmaids

Pre-Ceremony and the Ceremony


  • Last minute venue tweaking and adjustments
  • Last minute checks of bride’s attire, hair, makeup and vows
  • Last minute checks of groom’s attire, hair and vows
  • Guestbook
  • The program
  • Venue shots
  • Empty venue (the ceremony area)
  • Seating of important guests such as:
      • Parents
      • Grandparents
      • Siblings
      • Any other important guests


  • A full venue
  • The arrival of the groomsmen
  • Arrival of the groom
  • Bridal party arrival
  • Groom waiting with the officiant
  • Flower girls and ring bearers
  • Bride making her way down the aisle with her escort
  • Guests turning to see the bride
  • Guests’ reaction to the bride
  • Groom turning to see the bride
  • Groom’s reaction to the bride
  • Bride and escort from behind
  • Bride and escort from the front
  • Bride being given away by escort
  • The escort’s reaction to giving away the bride
  • Bride and Groom together
  • Ceremony proceedings
  • Guest reactions throughout the ceremony, particularly:
      • The parents
      • The Grandparents
      • Other relatives 
      • Special guests
  • Closeups of the:
      • Guest reactions to the vows
      • Brides reaction to the vows
      • Grooms reaction to the vows
  • Guests’ eye view of the wedding
  • Guests watching the ceremony
  • Close up of the rings being given
  • The big KISS!
  • Close up of the couple as their marriage is announced
  • Guests congratulating the announcement
  • Bride and groom leaving the ceremony venue, capture the fun of it all
  • The couple being showered with confetti by the guests as they leave

Post Ceremony

  • Group photos including:
      • The bride and grooms’ immediate families combined
      • The bride and grooms’ extended families combined
      • All the boys
      • All the girls
      • Both of the groom’s and the bride’s wedding parties together
      • Some creative and fun ideas with both wedding parties
  • Just the couple in various locations around the venue:
      • Creative shots
      • Funny shots
      • Variety of poses
      • Sexy shots (if they feel comfortable to do this)
      • Action shots
      • Scenic shots
      • Close up shots
      • Any other shot variations that fit your style or that the couple would want to to look back on one day
  • The couple getting into their transport to go to the reception
  • The relaxed couple taking a moment before the reception

The Reception

  • Exterior and interior shots of the reception, preferably before anyone turns up but not essential
  • Reception decor before anyone gets there
  • Special decorations that may have sentimental or personal meaning to the couple or any of the guests
  • The cake (Yum!)
  • Creative compositions of the table decorations, paying particular attention to the couples placing and any important guests
  • The food including:
      • Hors d’oeuvres
      • Starters
      • Main courses
      • Desserts 
      • Any other food circulating the reception
  • Shots of the couples’ and guests’ favourite drinks
  • The arrival of the guests
  • The arrival of important guests such as:
      • The bride’s parents, siblings, grandparents and friends
      • The groom’s parents, siblings, grandparents and friends
      • Any of the bridal party
      • The groomsmen
  • Signing of the guest book paying particular attention to important guests
  • The announcement of the bride and groom
  • The entrance of the bride and groom
  • The guests’ reaction to the couples’ entrance
  • Important guests’ reaction to the couples’ entrance
  • Important guests mingling with their friends
  • Large groups of family or friends, such as those from college/university
  • Shots of guests that are particularly important to the couple
  • The couple socialising with their guests
  • Best man’s speech
  • Groom’s Speech
  • Any other speech or toast
  • Guest reactions to the speeches
  •  Guests at the bar
  • Cutting of the cake
  • The couple feeding each other
  • Guest reactions
  • First Dance
  • The bride and groom kissing
  • Father and bride dance
  • Mother and groom dance
  • The couple dancing with their grandparents
  • The couple dancing with children
  • Fun group dances
  • Any entertainment such as musicians or DJs
  • Bouquet toss
  • The garter toss
  • The couple leaving
  • The couple leaving in their transport


  • Sunset shot with the couple
  • Nighttime shots with the couple
  • Additional venue shots
  • Vehicle shots and posing
  • Signing of the marriage certificate
  • Pet photography

So there you have it, the ultimate wedding photography shot list template.

Obviously you can add or take from it as you see fit, I would encourage it.

There are some shots which rely on there being a second photographer so bear that in mind.

I hope you can see how important a tool a wedding shot list like this can be now.

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