Creating a Shot List

I know Pinterest has told you to hand your photographer a long list of “must have” pictures.  But the truth is, working off a list isn’t the best idea!  The last thing you want is for us to have our eyes on a long list rather than on the moments that are unfolding before us!  We also are likely to capture all the things off that list anyways.  We encourage our couples to let us know any “must have shots” on their wedding day in our questionnaire, but this means things we might miss if we didn’t know about them.  The handkerchief in your pocket that was passed down from your grandparents, you and your uncle under the alter that he handmade of you, the bag that all your bridesmaids have because it was a gift from you, these are things we might miss because we just didn’t know any better!

Let me give you a real life example friends, maybe you just want a picture with a chicken.. like we did.  Don’t worry, I’ll explain.  Michael and I got married on a farm where chickens roamed free, and I desperately wanted to hold one of those chickens that perfectly matched our wedding colors while in my wedding gown.  I mean how adorable would that have been?!  But what photographer is going to walk up to a girl on her wedding day and say out of the blue, “here, hold this chicken.”!?  I knew it would be my responsibility on our wedding day to remember to grab one of those chickens!  But they roamed the whole place, surely I would remember.. but I didn’t!!!  Things go by so quickly on your wedding day.. don’t rely on your memory for anything!

The point is, make sure you let us know ahead of time if there are any of these must-have shots that are personal, uncommon, that we might not capture ’cause we just didn’t know any better. We know that these are extra special moments on your wedding day, and we want to make sure you have images to remember those moments for years to come.

(This is a perfect example.  Emily has her grandmother’s ring sewed into her dress.  I would have NEVER known.  AND wanted these three items shot together because they are her “something old, something new, something borrowed, and something blue.”  It’s likely I would have paired some of these details anyways, but maybe not all of them!)



  1. Cinnamon Wolfe

    August 25th, 2015 at 10:00 am

    So true! Must have shots are so important! there are a few I know I’m missing from my wedding day simply b/c I didn’t tell the photographer!


    August 26th, 2015 at 7:06 am

    There are just too many things to remember on a wedding day when you’re a bride! Am I right?!

  3. Jill

    August 25th, 2015 at 10:17 am

    This is such a great way to explain the importance of this, and I love the personal chicken example!! 🙂 Beautiful blog design as well!!


    August 26th, 2015 at 7:06 am

    Thank, Jill! Haha.. a little ridiculous, but we REALLY wanted that picture with a chicken!

  5. Mahlia | Ivory Door Studio

    August 25th, 2015 at 11:07 am

    I love how she had the ring sewn into the dress! What a fabulous idea!


    August 26th, 2015 at 7:07 am

    I loved it too Mahlia! I’m so glad she told us about it so we could get it photographed! Such a special touch!

  7. Ashley Durham

    August 25th, 2015 at 11:15 am

    I only tell my clients that I need a requested family groupings list. 🙂


    August 26th, 2015 at 7:08 am

    Hey Ashley, we request family groupings too!

  9. Shauna

    August 26th, 2015 at 2:56 pm

    I agree! A very unique, customized shot list is an extremely helpful tool for any photographer. 🙂

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