Your Wedding Timeline

Your Wedding Timeline

Your Wedding Timeline

contact us

Planning your wedding timeline

One of the questions I hear most frequently is, How do I know how long to book my wedding photographer for?


Planning your wedding timeline is a great tool for helping you work out how long to book your photographer for.  Read on for tips on how to make your wedding timeline and how your wedding photography fits into your timeline.


Tips for Planning Your Timeline

1. Why do I need a timeline?

It’s worth constructing your wedding timeline as early as possible and adding to it as more details are settled.

You and your suppliers will find it useful and it will help suppliers plan their services so they can deliver them at the right time.

It’s easy to start off thinking that you only need three hours of photography but when you factor in travel between your venues, additional aspects of the day you would like photographed and even time for delays, time adds up quite quickly.

The easiest way to plan your timeline is to start from the ceremony, which is usually the first thing you have booked, then work out in either direction.

2. Before your ceremony

Working backwards from the ceremony you need to consider the time you’ll be meeting with the registrar before the ceremony (usually 10 minutes for each of you if done individually).

Add in travel time between venues, if needed, and space for photos once you finish getting ready. You now know when you must be ready by and is the point your hair and makeup team will be aiming for.

Your hair and makeup team will let you know when they will be arriving and will be able to give you an indication of when they will be doing your makeup, hair will hopefully be after this. Ideally, your photographer will aim to start taking pictures of you when your makeup is in the final stages. 

You might not feel like it but make sure you leave time to have a good breakfast because you don’t want to be a hangry bride! Especially when you’ve had a couple of glasses of prosecco.

3. Your ceremony and after

Civil ceremonies last approximately half an hour, church services may be up to an hour.  Timings after your ceremony can depend upon a number of things.  You may also need to consider time to travel to your reception venue and it may be that your venue has requested a specific time for your wedding breakfast.  Both of these will limit how much time you have for your drinks reception.

Ideally, you need a minimum of an hour and a half for your drinks reception.  This allows you half an hour after your ceremony to meet and great your friends and loved ones and begin your celebrations.  Half an hour would be set aside for your group shots and half an hour for your portraits.

 It’s a good idea for any formal group shots you would like to be taken at this point before your guests get too drunk, their outfits get too crumpled and they are still looking their best. This means that your guests can then relax now their part of the day is complete.

It is normally during your drinks reception that you would have your wedding portraits taken, however time here may be short if there have been any delays. E.g. a late start to your ceremony. This adds a lot of pressure to get your photographs taken particularly if you have booked a short package.

Don’t worry if not all of your portraits are taken during this period as there will be plenty of opportunities later on in the day if you have booked a longer or full day package.

The benefits of booking more time with your photographer are that your portraits can be taken later in the day, you can have more varied portrait locations and hopefully beautiful golden light in the evening.

 I have been known to grab the bride and groom between courses to get outside for those amazing sunset images. And the break between your wedding breakfast and the arrival of any evening guests is a great time for relaxed group shots and more portraits of yourselves.

4. Lake District Scenery

If you are coming to the Lake District because you love the epic scenery you might like to plan more time for your photographs. This means you can travel further to get those wide landscape images.

When considering travelling time remember you need to double it to account for the journey back to the reception!  E.g. if you have half an hour for your portraits your schedule might look like this:

Travel to lake: 10 minutes
Portraits: 10 minutes
Travel back to venue: 10 minutes

As you can see, it doesn’t leave much time for your portraits to be taken!

The biggest downside to this plan is that you spend a large amount of time away from your guests.  This can be especially difficult if your guests have travelled a long way to be with you on your day.

Top Tip

If you’d love to spend all day with your guests and still want those epic backdrops book your photographer for the following day.  Get into your glad rags once again and heading up into the hills.  This gives you much more time to visit several locations without the time pressures and removes the guilt of feeling you need to return to your guests and join the party.

5. Intimate weddings

For an intimate wedding or to keep costs down you might be considering a three hour package and this can be a great solution. 

If you choose to have all of your photos taken at the venue, and you are not planning a full day of celebrations a three hour package should be able to capture arrivals for the ceremony, the ceremony itself, a small number of formal group shots and the your portraits.

However, if you’re travelling between your venues a big chunk of your photography time will be lost as photographers charge their time from the point at which they start.  Therefore, if you select the three hour package and one hour of this is travel time you would lose a third of time your photographer can take pictures. 

In these instances please ask your photographer for a custom quote to ensure all your wedding day plans are captured.

6. Other things to consider

During Summer when there is a lot of light so taking photographs in the evening is not a problem.  However, during winter evenings can be very dark.  This means that any outdoor Lake District photos you’d like are restricted to daylight hours.  Depending on your timeline there may not be room for all of the photos you’d like.  Options here are booking your photographer the next day as previously mentioned or consider a First Look session earlier in the day for your portraits.

The number of photographers you choose can also impact on the time needed, especially when getting ready.  Time needs to be allowed for your photographer to move between both partners if they are working alone.  Your photographer will be able to advise you of any extra time needed.

One Final Note

For all weddings seem like long days, time passes very quickly and it’s easy for a series of small delays to add up to a big one.  The first area that tends gets squeezed is your photography time. That said, your professional photographer should have alternative ideas for points at which to capture your images later on in the day.

I hope you’ve enjoyed reading my blog post and it has helped you in planning out your wedding timeline.

Need more wedding or photography advice?

For real weddings, inspiration and tips check out our blog.

5 Ways to Choose Your Wedding Colours

5 Ways to Choose Your Wedding Colours

5 Ways to Choose Your Wedding Colours

Contact us

5 Ways to Choose Your Wedding Colours

Choosing you wedding colours can be a difficult, and stressful decision. However, there are ways to make this choice a little bit easier. Here are my top 5 tips to do just that.


Recently, we had our logo for Radiance Photography redesigned by the fabulous Jili Allen (and very pleased we are too), however I came across a problem that made me think back to my own wedding and I’d like to share it with you.

Maybe you feel the same or have the same difficulties as me, and that is…..colour.

I know what you’re thinking, how hard can it be to choose your wedding colours? Well, in my case, very! I’m like a kid in a sweetshop when it comes to colour. All those sumptous shades, endless combinations and well…just too much choice!

Now bear with me, I’m making an assumption here, but I’m guessing that if you’re reading this, then, like me, you’ve lost countless hours of planning time and sleep worrying about choosing your perfect wedding colour scheme. I mean, the colour affects every aspect of your wedding, from your bouquet to the table dressings and more. Without having your chosen wedding colour scheme, it can be difficult to move forward. You can’t order your bridesmaid dresses, flowers, finalise stationary, the list goes on and on. I wanted my wedding to be perfect, and I’m sure you do too.

So, with all this in mind, I thought I’d share with you 5 methods I used to cut through wedding colour inspiration overload.

Top 5 Tips for Choosing your Wedding Colours

Consider your wedding venue

A quick and easy way of making your decision for your wedding colour scheme that little bit easier is to consider the venue you’ve chosen for your wedding, and decide if there are any colours that would look awful in there.

Now, this might not sound like its very helpful, but think of it this way. By eliminating colours that you just can’t use, you are narrowing down the ones you can chose from whilst ensuring that your scheme will look great in your wedding venue.

Use your Florist

My wedding florist nearly fell off her chair when I revealed my final wedding colour scheme.  It turned out the deep berry shade I had selected and fell in love with was really difficult to source, with most of the best blooms being out of season for our autumn wedding. 

Your wedding florist is a font of knowledge, so use that to your advantage.  See which flowers will be available at the time of year you’ve planned your wedding day.  Although most blooms are grown all year round, some will only be available in certain colours.  And whilst this may limit your options, again it may make choosing your wedding colour scheme that little bit easier.

Use Adobe Colour CC

This choice may seem completely outside the box, but the tech savy of you will love it. That being said, I’d advise everyone to have a look and try this, as the colour wheel is a fun tool to play with.  Basically, its a circle that has the range of colours situated strategically around the circle, with the complimentary colours opposite each other.

Where this method works great is if you have a base colour in mind, this allows you to easily find the colours that absolutely won’t work with your main choice, so you can start to plan the colours of your accessories without fearing a clash. 

Consider your Bridesmaids

No doubt your beautiful besties are all different shapes and sizes, and likewise they’ll have different skin tones and hair colours. So with that in mind, there are a few questions to ask yourself:

1. Are there any colours that make your best friends look terrible? Trust me, no girl wants to wear a colour that makes them feel hideous, even if they will smile sweetly and tell you ‘It’s your special day, I’ll wear whatever you want’. Remember, they might be getting married after you, and revenge is sweet, or so they say…

2. Your girls will all have their own style, and you love them how they are, so is there a colour that’ll work great on all of them? If there is, awesome! If not, then a compromise is the next best thing. Get them together over a glass of procsecco, and have a discussion about it will help guide you to the colours they really like, or really dislike. This will help to narrow your options down, and keep everyone happy. 

Pinterest is your Friend

Now, this might not seem like the obvious choice to help you choose your wedding colour scheme when you’re suffering from inspiration overload, however, bear with me…

Set up a Pinterest board specifically for colour inspiration, and pin loads of images to it with the colours you absolutely love.  Over time, you should start to see the colour preferences you have becoming obvious, and voila! Your wedding colour scheme has just been selected without you even knowing it.

Need more wedding or photography advice?

For real weddings, inspiration and tips check out our blog.

Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

contact us

Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

One of the questions I hear most frequently is, How do I choose my wedding photographer?


We all know there is a lot of choice out there when it comes to choosing your wedding photographer so I put together the following blog to help you find your way.


Tips for Choosing your Wedding Photographer

If you’ve not got time to watch our video on our facebook page, these are our 5 top tips. Click on each one for more advice.

1. Set Your Wedding Budget

As you start looking for your wedding photographer you’ll notice that price can vary considerably with photography packages ranging from £200 to £2000 for a full-day wedding.  As with most things in life, you get what you pay for. So, the question you need to ask yourself is “How important is having photos of my wedding to me?”

If the answer is “not very” feel free to make your decision based on price alone. However, if your wedding photography is important to you, look for photographers who are within your budget or who offer payment plans. If you’ve fallen in love with a particular photographer’s work see if you can book them for a shorter period of time if their full-day price is too high.  Another option is to add the beautiful folio box or album you want to your gift list so that your guests can help you.

Finally, wedding photographers who are establishing themselves, such as myself, can be budget friendly and provide great quality images with a high level of service.  The key thing here is to do your research.

2. Decide on the Photography Products You Want

You have a wide range of options available to you including digital images, digital images and prints, large wall art, albums and folio boxes to name a few.

It’s a good idea to let your photographer know what you would like before your wedding as this can impact on the images taken.

A wedding photo album will be shot with certain page spreads in mind so your photographer will make sure they get everything they need.

If you’d like a large wall image it may also be a good idea to look for someone who has experience in preparing images for printing and creating this kind of artwork.

3. Choose Your Favourite Photography Style 

Now, style is a big topic, one which I could dedicate a whole blog to, so I’m just going to give a quick overview.  To me, a photographer’s style is what you see in the final image.  This is made up of several artistic choices like lighting, posing (if any), composition and the final edit.

The combination of how each of these things are done is unique to each individual photographer like a fingerprint is unique to you.  By composition I mean where the happy couple are placed within the image and whether the image is tight to the couple or shows the action within the whole room.  The final edit is based on colour and tones, some photographers don’t like green so they choose to tone it down, others like their image to be dark, and moody with muted colours, others love light, airy, pastel shades.

Look though lots of wedding images, create a Pinterest board of your favourites.  What are your preferences?  Dark, light or natural colours?  Close up or whole room included in the image?  These are your preferences, there is no right or wrong, and they should form the basis of your search for your photographer.

Please don’t ask a photographer to change their editing style.  That’s like asking Vincent van Gogh to paint with acrylics when he’s known for his watercolours.  Find a photographer who’s style you love.

4. Look at Real Wedding Examples

Once you’ve narrowed your wedding photographers down it’s time to talk about their portfolio or body of work.  Check out my images here.

Ask to see at least three real weddings if possible. You need to look for consistency in their images meaning are the colours and tones the same?  Other questions you might ask yourself are: Is the style of photography similar throughout?  Do the couples look relaxed and comfortable.

Look for any weddings where the photographer has shot at your venue.  This will give you an example of what can and can’t be achieved.  It is also worth asking to see any weddings that were taken around the same time of year as your wedding.

Overall, the most important question to ask yourself is; do you still love their style of photography?

5. Meet your Potential Wedding Photographers

So, you’ve narrowed down your choice of wedding photographers, confirmed they are available on for your date.  The next step is to meet them.  You want beautiful images, however if your photographer doesn’t make you feel comfortable this will show through in your wedding photos.  It’s worth noting that your photographer may also see you partially dressed during your preparations.  Make sure you are ok with this as you don’t want to miss out on the photos of all the fun and emotions you’re having getting ready.

 My recommendation is to always meet your photographer in person where possible.  If the distance is too far, Skype is a good alternative.  I’d also recommend having an engagement shoot so you can get to know how your photographer works and begin to feel more relaxed and comfortable in front of the camera.  It will make a big difference!

6. One Final Note

Once you’ve made your final selection please spare a thought for the photographers who you’ve met and decided not to use.  Just drop them a quick email thanking them for their time and letting them know you have chosen elsewhere.  Many photographers will hold your date as provisional for the duration of the enquiry so this ensures dates aren’t being held unneccesarily and also means your inbox isn’t filling up with follow up emails you don’t have the time/energy for.

Need more wedding or photography advice?

For real weddings, inspiration and tips check out our blog.

5 Reasons to choose a premium folio box?

5 Reasons to choose a premium folio box?


Our premium folio box is just stunning.  Don’t believe us?  Read on to find out why we think they are so special.

Now, we know, it’s a tough decision when you’re choosing your photographer to determine whether you would like just digital images, a wedding or family album produced or if you would prefer to go for an alternative album product that is a little different but equally beautiful.

Luxury folio box-7

Less waiting time

Here at Radiance Photography we passionately believe in providing you with a product you will use.  Around the UK thousands of wedding albums are purchased each year.  Many albums are received long after your wedding excitement has died down.  An album can take as long as six weeks to arrive from the printer after it has been designed and approved.  So that’s up to 8 weeks for your photos to be delivered in peak wedding season and then up to a further 6 weeks for your album after you have approved it.  Folio boxes are available for you to collect on the day of your image viewing.

You choose how to display your images

When you finally receive your album you look through it, possibly take it to your grans, then put it on a book shelf or somewhere safe and only occasionally look at it again.  With a folio box, your images are individually mounted so all you need to do is choose how to display them.  Would you love a picture shelf where you can take several images from your box and display them?  Or, would you frame your images and hang them in a prominent place which will make you smile on a daily basis?  Don’t forget, you can change the images you’ve chosen to display as often as you like to suit your mood or décor.  You could also choose to keep them safely stashed away in their luxury box.

Luxury folio box-8

Image selection is your choice

Often in album design your photographer will choose for you, giving little choice in which images you’d like to include.  With a folio box the choice of images is yours.  We will guide you by choosing and printing a selection of the very best images from the day for you.  Don’t worry if your favourite image has not been selected.  This is easily resolved within a few days and you can still take the rest of your images home.

Luxury folio box-11

Personalise additional boxes with different images

When you purchase additional albums for parents they tend to be exact replicas of your own album, albeit smaller.  Ordering additional folio boxes with us allows you to select the images you want to include.  This means you can personalise each box with specific family members in mind.  The ultimate win when it comes to keeping your family happy.

Save room for next time

You do not need to fill you folio box initially.  Instead you could choose to include images from your engagement shoot to fill your box.  Alternatively, you could leave space for future images.  This might be particularly good if you’re planning a christening or other family event. We’re happy to assist you with this, just book and pay for your next shoot and then select the images you’d like.

Add your premium folio box to you Gift List

Would you love a premium folio box but just can’t afford it?  How about adding your box to your wedding gift list?  You choose between adding it as a single item or breaking it down into smaller amounts.  All you would need to do would be to pay the balance if the full cost of your box wasn’t covered.

The best way to help you decide if a premium folio box is for you is to ask to see one at your consultation.  Too feel the weight and solid build of your luxury folio box.  For information on how your box can be customised to your requirements see our post; Introducing our Luxury Folio Box


Getting married in the Lake District

Getting married in the Lake District

So, you’re getting married in the Lake District. That’s fantastic!  I mean, who wouldn’t want to get married in some of the most breath taking scenery England has to offer? We’ve compiled some useful information to help you with planning your dream day.  But, before we get down to it, there are a couple of things you need to do first.  At this moment I have an image of the Croods and the monkey playing ‘da da dah’ in my head.  That said, you really have nothing to worry about!

First things first

It’s very important before you even go about setting a date to decide on rough numbers you would like to invite and set that all important budget.  I’d love to tell you that money is no object and in my dreams it wouldn’t be.  However, this is ultimately what impacts on your dreams and decisions.  We definitely found a spreadsheet to be the best way to go about this.  We are happy to share ours – let us know in the comments if this is something you’d like.  It might be a good idea to work out how much you are prepared to spend per head on catering and drinks.  Many of the Lake District wedding venues offer a ‘price per guest’ package.  This normally includes room hire if you invite over a certain number of guests.

Religious Ceremonies

Now you’ve set your numbers and decided how much money you will spend it’s time to go venue shopping.  So it comes down to that all important decision – a religious ceremony or a civil ceremony.

For a Church ceremony, you need to live locally to the church, have lived in the parish at any time for at least 6 months or have been baptised or confirmed within the parish.  Many churches will also consider you if you have regularly attended normal church services for at least 6 months.  You may be entitled to marry in the church if  one of your parents have lived in the parish for 6 months at any time after you were born or have regularly attended normal church services for at least 6 months.  Any finally, if one of your parents or grandparents were married in the parish that will enable you to marry there.

Now that seems like a lot right?  Any maybe you don’t fit into any of these criteria.  Don’t lose hope.  Be sure to contact the church you are interested in marrying in as each church will have their own criteria. For further information please check out Your Church Wedding.


If you are followers of a different faith, or would like a Humanist ceremony you will also need to have a civil ceremony so that your marriage is legally recognised in the UK.

A church ceremony means you can hold you reception in a venue without a wedding licence.  You will have much more choice in where you hold your reception better suiting your style and budget.

Civil Ceremonies

Civil ceremonies can be carried out either at the Registry Office or in licenced premises.  In Cumbria, registry offices can be found in Carlisle, Penrith, Wigton, Whitehaven, Barrow-in-Furness and Kendal.  All of these towns are situated just outside of the Lake District National Park  More information can be found here.

If you would like to get married at licenced premises within the Lake District and Cumbria there is a careful juggling act to be done in the booking stage.  You need both the registrar and the venue to be available at the required date and time.  It could be easy to lose your deposit on the venue if the registrar is unavailable for your chosen dates and the venue cannot accommodate alternative dates.  Venues will be able to tell you which registry office you need to contact.

Wedding Venues

When you’re getting married in the Lake District there are lots of venues to choose from including castles, country houses and barns.  You can find an up to date list of all licenced venues in the Lake District and Cumbria here.  Unlike in Scotland where you can choose your location for an outdoor wedding, English law means that you must be married under a licenced permanent structure such as a gazebo. Fortunately, more and more venues are offering this as an outdoor ceremony option. 

When choosing your Lake District wedding venue make sure there is plenty of accommodation nearby for your guests.  Advise your guests to book rooms early as it does get very busy in between May and September with walkers, adventurers, thrill seekers and those here to admire the view.  Many venues have weddings booked two to three years in advance.  You have been warned!

Phew, there was a lot of information there.  You’ve booked your registrar or church and confirmed your venue so you’ve got the basics out the way.  You can now get on with the more exciting decisions, such as dress, colour scheme and how many flower girls.  Join us in our next post where we discuss the pros and cons of booking local suppliers versus suppliers close to home.


Introducing our Luxury Folio Box

Introducing our Luxury Folio Box

Introducing our Luxury Folio Box

We’re so excited to introduce you to our beautiful, luxury folio box.

So, what’s a luxury folio box?

I hear you ask.  Well put simply it’s a box to keep all of your prints in but it’s not just any old box.  Our luxury folio boxes have been hand selected by us as the best available and will contain carefully selected images you will treasure for years to come.  The premium metallic pewter faux leather of your soft touch luxury folio box comes complete with silver foiled branding and is simply stunning.

Family Heirloom

Designed as a family heirloom you can treasure forever, each box comes complete with up to twenty or thirty images which are  mounted individually.  Each mount is a 14 x 11 inch heavyweight, bevel cut mat which is made from professional archival board.  This conforms to the Fine Art Trade Guild requirements for Conservation (level 2).  Each board is specially prepared to have the right chemical balance to ensure that your prints last a lifetime.

Online Gallery

We know digital images are important to you so each of our premium folio boxes also comes complete with your individually hand-processed, high resolution digital files in an online gallery where you can like, comment and share the images to your hearts content.


When you pre-order a folio box as part of your booking you will get the opportunity to customise it.  For an additional fee, you can choose a black, soft grey, metallic champagne or even a wooden box.  You can choose to personalise the front of your box with your name and date of your wedding.   Inside, the colour of the mounts can be customised with black, white or cream mounts or a mixture.

Click here to find out why we believe a premium folio box is better than an album.