Ending Your Wedding with a Bang

Wedding Planning

February 17, 2020

For many of you, when you picture the end of your wedding day, you think about doing a sparkler exit and then leaving in your getaway car. Sparkler exits have been quite the trend lately, however, this method isn’t the most strategic way to end your photography time.


MYTH: your photography coverage should end when your wedding ends.

Believe it or not, it is almost never ideal to end your photography coverage at the same time as your wedding day ends. For most people, you are planning a reception that will last for several hours.. that means several of your (very vital & expensive) photography hours will be covering the same 20 people on the dance floor.

Your wedding ending can be anything you want, but your photography coverage end time should be intentional and strategic to benefit the other parts of the day!


For the majority of couples, they will look through every single photo once they’ve received their full gallery! However, as the months and years go by, the main photos they’ll look back on are their portraits or the getting ready candids from the beginning of the day.

When you choose to opt OUT of keeping your photographer to the end of your wedding, you opt IN for having them arrive earlier to capture more candid moments and provide plenty of wiggle room for stress-free portrait time! Once your end time is flexible, you’re able to plan around the portraits instead of rushing the beginning portion of your wedding day.

Want to hear more about this? Read this blog post: How Fake Exits Make for Better Portraits


Now that I’ve convinced you you don’t need your photographer to stay to the end of your wedding, let’s talk about how you should end your photography coverage!

IDEA # 1 – Signature Photo

This is the most recommended and FAVORITE idea from my couples! This is one final set of images with the Bride & Groom near the end of your photography coverage.

Depending on the time of year, this may be portraits including flash or portraits during sunset!

These images give you the “end of the night” epic final photo without being locked into an official end time.

IDEA # 2 – No Official Exit

For many of my couples, they’ve opted to have no official exit. They don’t want to interrupt the party, so we simple set an end time and call it a day! With this option, I’ll ask my couple about 15 minutes before ending if there are any last photos they want that we haven’t gotten yet!

IDEA # 3 – Faux Exit

Some couples who really want that sparkler exit photo choose to have a Faux Exit which means an exit just for the photos. Some choose to have this with just the wedding party during the reception. In this case, guests typically won’t even know you’re missing and you’ll be able to run through the sparkler line multiple times!

Another option for doing this is scheduling a time with all your guests. You would want to instruct your DJ to announce it as a Faux Exit with an after party to follow back inside. This gives your elderly guests or guests with children an opportunity to leave a bit earlier, while those who want to stay for the party can keep going!


BLOG: Why Wedding Exits are Dead

BLOG: Ceremony Exit = The New Sparkler Exit

BLOG: Real Wedding Day with a Faux Exit

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