When it comes to your big day – or even just a special occasion or event – it’s a no brainer that you will want someone there to professionally document and capture those moments on film. However, you can’t just hire any photographer to do the job. If you want to love the end result then there are several important steps to take to ensure both you and your photographer are on the same page. It’s normal to have a specific vision in your head of what you want your photos to look like and if that isn’t your photographer’s forte or you just flat out don’t communicate with your photographer the chances are pretty great that you will end up hating the photos.
This is why we’ve put together a list of tips to point you in the right direction in your search for the right photographer.
1. Decide what style you want. Before you even begin to contact photographers you first need to decide what photo style you want your wedding to be captured in. There are typically three types of photographers: photojournalists, traditional wedding photographers, and those who are a jack of all trades who can do a balance of both styles. If you’re wanting more candid shots that follow the lines of documentary style then you are wanting a photojournalist. If you want very traditional photos that are mainly posed shots (think your parents’ wedding album) then you want to stick with a traditional wedding photographer. If you’re wanting a mix of those two you will want to seek out a photographer that likes to get creative with the traditional shots.
2. Research, research, research. Ask around for photographer recommendations as well as scour the internet looking for local photographers. Check out client reviews, the photographers’ website/blog, as well as their social media pages. As you give their photo galleries a glance ask yourself if these photos are inline with what you want your wedding photos to look like.
3. Interviews and personalities
Once you find a handful of local photographers whose style is similar to what you want, reach out to them about setting up an interview. You’ll also want to include your wedding date so they can check to see if your wedding date is available or already booked. You want to meet with several different local photographers because you want to make sure your personalities mesh, it’s incredibly important that you like your photographer and they like you. It just produces better quality photos.
4. Ask to see full wedding albums.
Request your potential photographers bring one or two full wedding albums that they’ve shot. This way you can get a real grasp on what to expect as well as a well rounded view of their capabilities that lie beyond the highlights gallery on their website.
5. Confirm your photographer. While setting up the interview you want to make sure that the photographer that you’re meeting with will be the actual photographer assigned to shooting your big day. This is especially important if you are working with a bigger photography studio who has several photographers on their staff. Photographers are essentially artists and not one artist is like another.
6. Talk money.
While there is no way to set a concrete price because there are many aspects into what goes into your final price (how many hours the photographers are booked, how many albums and prints you want, etc.), you will still need to roughly compare packages. During the interview you will want to ask each potential photographer what is their standard shooting fee, hourly booking rate, standard rates for their albums, etc. This will give you a good ballpark number when comparing the different photographers after all the interviews are completed and you’re making your final decision.
While keeping these tips in mind you should find the process of finding the right photographer to shoot your wedding to be a lot easier!