For many couples planning a wedding, finding the right photographer is at the top of the list. And because it’s such a big decision, booking a photographer is a process that should not be rushed. This is the person that will be capturing every special moment of your big day so making sure that you pick just the right person should be a top priority.
As you start your search for a photographer, here are the three very important things to keep in mind.
It’s easy for a wedding photographer to impress you by showing you their top 25 to 30 wedding photos (which is what we ALL do – we showcase our favorites on our website galleries). And sometimes, photographers fill their website galleries with staged “styled” photoshoots that look like weddings, but are not real weddings. This isn’t going to give you a good enough idea of what you can expect overall. Can the photographer produce a consistent quality of work throughout the entire wedding day, in various situations and lighting conditions? Can they produce a consistent quality of work in unpredictable situations, like weddings can be?
The only way to answer that question is to see a few full wedding galleries – from beginning to end! You’ll want to have a look through everything from the getting ready and detail shots to the ceremony, toasts, and reception shots. Ask the photographer you are talking with to see full galleries of actual weddings. This is something that I feel is SO IMPORTANT that I offer this to any bride inquiring about my services.
Your wedding photographer is going to be around you and your family for most of your wedding day, so it’s important for you to feel comfortable with him or her. When a couple doesn’t feel comfortable around their wedding photographer, it will show in their photos, but the opposite holds true, too. A good photographer will know how to make you feel at ease, will guide you on how to pose before and on your wedding day, and will always be willing to answer any questions that you might have. Definitely hire a photographer you can get along with (bonus points if you just “click” like long lost friends).
You will, of course, want to know that your photographer has the relevant experience to shoot a wedding. But it’s also important to know what types of weddings they have photographed. Will you have a dimly lit venue that requires someone who knows how to shoot in low light situations (a critical skill for weddings)? Are you having an ethnic wedding and need someone who understands specific cultural traditions? Will your ceremony have requirements such as not being able to use a flash or not being able to stand up close (pretty typical requirements, actually) and will the photographer be able to work with those requirements? Make a list of your requirements before you meet with your photographer so that you can make sure there won’t be any potential problems leading up to the wedding once the finer details are discussed.
While price does play a role in choosing a photographer, basing your choice on these top three elements is far more important. Your wedding photos are something you’ll treasure for years to come so take the time to choose a photographer that can best capture these amazing memories.