Lifestyle, Wedding

How to Choose Your Wedding Photographer

If you are anything like me, I was really picky about which photographer we used for our wedding. After it’s over, the pictures (and memories) are all that you have left! You spend so much time, effort and money on this special event, and so you probably want it documented perfectly. Below are the key questions and answers you will need to know before sealing the deal with your photographer.

  1. Find a photographer that matches your style.
    • Do you want bright, crisp photos or a more artsy/dramatic style? Lots of color or more muted?
    • Are they known for their candids or are they more posed/stylized photos?
    • Are the photos mostly happy, emotional or fun?
    • Do they shoot in digital, film or both?
      • I loved my photographer’s aesthetic and had no idea it was because she shot in film!
  2. Look at his/her work (preferably an entire wedding album) in a similar venue!
    • A wedding photographer may have gorgeous outdoor photos, but if you are getting married in a church with an inside reception, you will need to see pictures that are in that type of setting (i.e. if they need to use flash – do you like the way it looks?)
      • If the photographer has shot your venue – even better! You can get a good look at what you can expect from the setting and they will know how to navigate for the best shots.
    • Review the album with keen attention to detail. Did they capture the emotion and moments that you think are special? Did you like the poses, background, colors?
      • Looking through my own photos, I noticed that mostly all (except the first look) of the pictures pre-wedding ceremony were posed and there were barely any candids. This is something I definitely didn’t think about when looking through another person’s album.
  3. Meet the actual photographer AND any assistants that will be there
    • This person will be with you the entire wedding day, so choose someone with a personality that you like and will be pleasant throughout the day
    • My photographer brought an assistant with her to our wedding that I had never met who ended up being the one directing the shots most of the day… I was disappointed because I really loved MY photographer’s personality AND the assistant kept calling me the wrong name – on my wedding day…
    • Get a feel for how organized and professional this person acts. If you don’t have a wedding coordinator, the photographer usually directs a majority of the day-of logistics because a lot of it centers around the photos (getting ready, family, first look, venue pictures)
  4. If you choose a company instead of a single person, make sure that you have the name of the actual photographer in your contract
    • I had a friend get married in a beautiful country club wedding, but on her wedding day the company sent a different photographer than she had met and had already done her bridals, and she ended up being extremely upset a good part of the day
  5. If you can, get your engagement photos done with the same photographer to get a feel of the process and style.
    • How does this person interact with you? Did you like the way the pictures turned out? Was he/she creative, fun interesting? How quickly did he/she get the photos back to you? Did they make all of the changes/edits/updates you wanted in a timely fashion?
    • The photographer will usually give you a discounted price for additional services/add-ons if you end up signing with them.
  6. Read reviews and ask around! 
    • You don’t know what you don’t know. Reviews might give you insight into an issue or highlight a great feature that you didn’t even think about or that you couldn’t see just from looking at his/her work. Getting a referral from a friend or wedding coordinator is a great way to go.
  7. Review the pricing and package information.
    • Make sure that it is a reasonable price for the package. Will they include your bridals, engagements, budoirs at a discounted price?
    • Check to see who owns the pictures and how they will be delivered to you (online gallery, photo book, USB drive)

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Did I miss anything? Let me know your ideas of questions that you asked your wedding photographer!

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