3 Must Read Reasons for Formal Portraits

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Why Family formal portraits can’t be missed

I have this very distinct memory at our own wedding hearing several close family members groan as we gathered everyone for formal portraits. In my own head — at that moment — I was stressed. I wanted to rush through these “must do” photos so that we could run down to the beach and do portraits of Michael and I — the photos I deemed most important. The sun was sinking low, and the time it took everyone to gather felt like an eternity.

Fast forward nearly (gulp!) a decade later, I look back at these formal portraits with total gratitude.

You see, since our wedding, things have changed (seriously, I can’t believe we’ve been married nearly 10 years!!). My grandmother has since passed away, our niece and nephews have nearly grown up completely, and Michael and I are definitely not 20 somethings anymore! These photos stir in me nostalgia and disbelief at how much has happened in the short decade since. And the truth is, this will be even more so ten years from now. Only then, I’ll be able to share these photos with our own kids, and eventually (hopefully) I’ll share them with my grandchildren.

So in a nutshell, here are our three reasons why these photos can’t be missed and why I love them more and more as the years (very quickly!) go by.

1. The people in these photographs matter.

We often get asked by our brides and grooms who they should include in their formal portraits. Generally speaking, your closest relatives should be included. These are often the people that raised you, comforted you, and helped you become the person you are today. Additionally, these are the people that most likely helped you through the process of planning your wedding. What a gift to be in a portrait with them on your wedding day.

For most of our clients, they are as follows:

Your Parents and/or Step Parents
Your Siblings, your siblings spouses and their children
Grandparents

Certainly, you can opt to have other important people join in these portraits. Just keep in mind that each group takes 2-3 minutes to photograph, and we only have about 25 minutes to complete the formal portraits.

2. The formal group portraits make beautiful gifts for family members that attend your wedding, especially if you want to send them a thank you gift.

3. These photos document your family for future generations. Think about it. Years from now, your children (and your children’s children) will look at these photographs and see family members who are no longer with us. They get to see what their relatives looked like when they were young! It’s a beautiful documentation of your family’s legacy all in a single, beautiful portrait that will be looked at for decades.