Maybe this will be a weird post and maybe it won’t, but it’s a good time of year to talk about how to pick a wedding photographer.
Yes, we are wedding photographers.
No, this is not a post about how to pick us. (But if you do, Bob will give you a foot massage. I can attest – he’s very gentle.)
We field a lot of phone calls and email inquiries from brides about booking their wedding. The range of questions run the gamut. Yes, there is talk about the budget, and that’s important, but it’s not the only thing. (More on that later)
So we thought we would compile a list of things you should do and look for in selecting a photographer.
1. Do your research. Every photographer should have a website. Check it out. Is the work any good? Compare it to other photographers. Is the content of the site fresh or was their last blog post or update weeks ago, months ago or yikes, years ago. (Yes, this happens!)
2. Meet with potential photographers. This is imperative and might seem like a pain, but you really want to know if you click with someone before hiring them. They will be with you all day! Spend a little time getting to know them. If you’re pretty sure but not positive, do an engagement session with them and see how it goes. you should love the photos that come out of it and you should LOVE the experience of having them done.
3. Ask questions. Don’t be afraid to ask questions. Any professional should be able to comfortably answer all of your questions. The best will be able to give you advice and help you as you plan your day.
4. Ask if they have ever taken photos at your venue. This is not a make or break deal but if they have, you can ask them to see photos from those weddings. If they haven’t it’s not a deal breaker but a good rule of thumb is the photographer should be willing to visit your venue ahead of of your wedding to get a lay of the land. So ask.
5. Ask your friends. You’ve probably been to a wedding or two before. Ask your friends if they were happy with their photographer. Ask if there was anything they thought they could have done better.
6. Are they active on social media? Everyone is. If they are not, it’s a red flag.
7. Does the work fit your style? You will see a lot of photographers say they focus mainly on photojournalism (candids). Those photos are great, but shooting a wedding requires a lot more than that. It’s a mix of a lot of photography skills from fashion to product (wedding rings, wedding dress) to portraits.
8. Ask a wedding planner. If you are using one they will have some really good options for you.
9. Check to see if they are published in magazines and on blogs. This is actually a really good indicator of how involved and professional your photographer is in the business. It’s hard work getting published but a huge reward for the bride. It will show that he or she is a huge advocate for you and your day. Plus, who doesn’t like getting photos of their wedding splashed across a couple pages in a magazine.
10. Your budget. (I promised we would get back to this) This is always a sticky issue because prices will vary dramatically and it can be confusing to brides. So here is the advice we offer. When your spectacular day is over, the ONLY things left are memories and photos (and that kinda weird tradition of saving a piece of cake.)
Thank you so much for reading!