16 Must-Have Poses to Photograph at Your Wedding

A bride and groom standing in a field and holding sparklers.

Your wedding day is easily one of the most photographed days of your life. Your photographer will likely have thousands of candids of the two of you as you tie the knot, cut the cake, and dance the night away. But before you walk down the aisle and hear the first click of the shutter, it’s a good idea to have a consultation with your photographer to ensure that every pose you want included will be there—because, after all, you only have one shot at your wedding day. Here are 16 poses you’ll want to photograph for your wedding.

1. When You First Put on the Dress

Someone tying the bow on the back of a bride's dress as she's getting ready before her wedding ceremony.

There’s something magical about the moment you realize you’re really going to be a bride. Sure, you wore the wedding dress at the boutique, but there’s something transformational that happens when you put on your wedding dress on your wedding day.

2. Putting on the Veil

Have your photographer capture the moment when your mom, sister, or maid of honor puts on your veil for you. You’ll want to remember what you look like as you put the finishing touches on your look and get ready to walk down that aisle.

3. Getting Ready Poses

A groom toasting with his groomsmen before the wedding.

Getting ready for your wedding day can be a bit of a blur (especially if there’s champagne toasts involved), so be sure to have your photographer take pictures of you and your bridesmaids and the groomsmen and the groom getting ready.

4. Close-ups of Your Hair and Makeup

If you’re spending hours (and lots of dollars) on your hair and makeup, you want a photo of it looking pristine.

5. A Bridal Portrait

A photographer taking a picture of a bride leaning against a wall.

Even if you didn’t schedule a separate bridal portrait session, you at least deserve a few photos of you looking gorgeous on your wedding day. Before you walk down the aisle, have your photographer take a few snaps of you alone so that you can remember every detail of your look.

6. One with Each Wedding Party Member

Group photos are cute, but don’t forget about individuals with each member of the wedding party. Bonus: this will make excellent gifts for later.

7. The First Look

A bride surprising her groom at their first look photo shoot before the wedding.

If you’re choosing to do a first look before you walk down the aisle, this is a must-capture for the photographer. You want to remember the expressions on your faces when you see each other for the first time on your wedding day—something that can’t be captured by a staged photograph.

8. Walking with Your New Spouse

After the ceremony is over (and your nerves have subsided), have your photographer capture a photo of the two of you walking and talking together post-nuptials.

9. The Best Man or Maid of Honor Toast

A groomsman giving a toast at a wedding reception in front of the bridal party and the bride and groom.

Has your bridal party popped open a champagne bottle and prepared a few words? Your photographer will definitely want to capture those moments of the clinking glasses and the gorgeous smiles surrounding you. But the best man or maid of honor aren’t the only ones who do the toasting—have your photographer take a picture of all the hugs and the raising of the glasses to the happy couple.

10. Photos with Your New Family

Weddings are all about joining two families together—so reflect that in the photographs. Don’t forget to tell the photographer to capture photos with each side of the family, and then maybe one of all the family together.

11. A Posed Groom

A groom wearing a navy blue jacket with a yellow boutonnierre and black bowtie.

The groom is looking as dapper as he’s ever been—so don’t forget to tell the photographer to snap some solo shots of just him!

12. One with all the Grandparents

If you’re lucky enough to have grandparents at your wedding, it’s customary to include them in the family portraits. Be sure to get both sides represented and one with all of the grandparents together.

13. One with Just You and Your Mom

A bride and her mom before the wedding ceremony.

Your mom was the one who listened to all of those frustrations about the caterer, helped you pick out a dress, and who has been there to support you since day one. Don’t forget to take a photo with your one and only mama!

14. Sibling Photo

Siblings may drive you crazy sometimes, but you wouldn’t know how to live without them. Get individual and group photos with your siblings. After all, when’s the next time you’re all going to be dressed up like this?

15. A Kiss on the Cheek

A bride giving her groom a kiss on the cheek at their wedding.

There’s something so intimate and adorable about a simple kiss on the cheek. Undoubtedly, you’ll be smiling from ear to ear, creating the perfect pose and a photo you’ll want to hang up in your living room.

16. The Last Kiss of the Night

Right before you head back to your hotel, check in for your honeymoon flight and say goodbye to your guests, there will be one last kiss at the reception. Don’t forget to photograph it!

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