How to Book YOUR Perfect Wedding Photographer.
It goes without saying that your wedding is the most important day of your life and for many people it will be the first time that they have needed to choose a professional photographer. It’s not always the easiest decision to make, it’s likely that you have a good idea what you want from your venue, florist and dressmaker but choosing a photographer can seem a little overwhelming.
Since your photographs are the only part of the wedding day that you will have forever and may well become a family heirloom I’d like to help you make the best choice by sharing the questions that I believe everyone should be asking when looking for a photographer.
What is your style and approach? One of the most important decisions you need to make is what style of photography you want. You can find out if a photographer shoots in a style that appeals by looking at their website but don’t be afraid to ask a them to describe their approach and how they work. I describe myself as an authentic documentary photographer taking a photojournalistic approach to telling the story of your day. I capture real moments, genuine emotions, nerves and laughter, tears and high spirits. I might be fading into the background during the preparations and the ceremony or in the thick of the action on the dance floor. What I don’t do is stage moments or direct action, asides from your requested group shots.
How long have you been shooting weddings & what sort of experience do you have? I’ve been in business over 12 years and have covered in excess of 300 weddings in the UK and abroad. I’ve probably covered every style of wedding and every type of venue but wedding photography is a very accessible business and there are new photographers coming into the industry all the time. Many of them will be fantastic photographers as well as being trustworthy and highly reliable. Sadly a small number are untalented and looking for a quick way to make a bit of money, we’ve all read the horror stories about couples being let down. Don’t be afraid to ask for reassurance if a photographer isn’t well established, look for reviews from past couples and be sure to ask all the questions that follow.
What time do you finish? Don’t assume that your photographer will be there for your party. Everyone offers a different length of coverage, if your party is important to you make sure you discuss it with your photographer. I stay till at least 9pm in all over my packages because I love to shoot the party (that’s when the fun really starts!), you’ll find me on the dance floor in the middle of action capturing the fun and frolics, the cool and less than cool dance moves and all the laughter.
Can we see some full weddings from start to finish? There should be absolutely no reason that a photographer wouldn’t be willing to show you a selection of complete weddings. The images they show you should support their answers to the questions above, make sure they have a consistent style so you know what to expect when you receive your own images.
Do you offer a pre-wedding shoot? Many people won’t have been photographed by a professional so some sort of photoshoot before the wedding can be useful. I offer various levels of pre-wedding shoots and firmly believe that even a mini-shoot for a few social media images has great benefits.
Are you insured and do you have a contract? OK it’s a boring question I know but it’s an essential one. Any photographer that takes their business seriously would not dream of shooting a wedding uninsured and without a contract. This question should help you avoid the type of photographer who might let you down when it matters most.
What equipment do you have? This is not about the make or the model of the camera but you need to know that your photographer is prepared for emergencies and carries back up equipment. Your photographer should at least have two cameras and a selection of lenses.
How long does it take to get my images? There is no right or wrong answer to this although I would be a little concerned if they were ready the next day! Some photographers may take as long as three months so make sure you are aware how long you will be waiting. For each wedding I shoot I will spend around 20 hours editing images and I have the full gallery ready three weeks after the wedding.
I hope that these questions will help you in your search to find your perfect photographer, I’ll leave you with my “Tip of the Day” – take a good look through photographers’ blog/journal sections on their websites. This will give you much better overview of their style than the highlight reel of images in the gallery/portfolio sections.
If you are currently planning your wedding and would like a copy of my current Wedding & Pricing Brochure drop an email to firstname.lastname@example.org and I’ll send one over to you, or if you would like to chat please give me a call on 07882 652956.