Wedding photos are an important part of your wedding. There is only 24 hours that make up your wedding day. A day to be cherished with memories to pass down through generations. Your choice of a wedding photographer is not something that should be taken lightly. Following the steps below can help you choose the best wedding photographer to capture your special day.
What’s your taste in wedding photos? Are you the type that looks for candid wedding photo ideas on Pinterest? Or do you prefer the traditional posed images? Do you like colour or black and white photography? Maybe you prefer a wedding photographer that combines all of these styles into one.
Each couple has their own idea of how long they want the photographer to be at their service. Maybe you only want the photographer there for the ceremony. Perhaps you want an all day photography package that includes: individual pictures of the couple as they get ready, photos of the ceremony, a 1-2 hour photo shoot (to get pictures with family, the wedding party, and the couple alone) and the reception (first dance, parent dances, bouquet toss, and garter toss). Some photographers also offer pre-wedding pictures/engagement photos, rehearsal dinner photographs, and boudoir photography.
Many couples begin planning their wedding and realize they cannot have all the things they may have wanted, due to budget constraints. This being said it is important to determine the amount you plan to spend on your wedding because photographer fees, prints, albums, etc. are approximately 15% of your budget ($20,000 budget- means $3000 goes towards wedding photos). This will help you determine the photographers that fit your budget.
Besides the photographer’s style and price, think about what you want from them. Do you want someone that offers engagement photos and boudoir? Do you want a photographer who is also a photo editor? Does the photographer offer prints, digital, or both? Find out if you or the photographer owns the copyright to the images.
We recommend looking for a local photographer because you can ask the management of the ceremony and reception venue their opinion and reviews from past couples. Also, ask your family and friends their opinion on photographers they would recommend. In addition, attend local bridal shows and wedding expos to gather information on professionals in your area.
Look at their samples if they have them online (most professionals today do), if not ask them to see previous work. Ask for previous clients and contact them to see if they were happy with the end results.
It’s your turn to ask questions and interview each photographer. Ask them questions such as: are they available, how much experience do they have, do they specialize in weddings, how soon do you get your photos, what is their deposit and payment schedule, do they have insurance, do they charge tax, and do they have backup equipment?
They may have met all your criteria so far and answered everything great over the phone, but now it comes down to personality. Are they friendly, polite, and easy to get along with? Who do you want to invest 15% of your budget with?
This is an important part of your special day. Like any big decision, talk to your fiancé and sleep on it. Your photographer could be with you the whole day and could see you when you are most vulnerable, pick someone you trust.
Call your chosen photographer and ask them to reserve your wedding date. Sign the contract and place your deposit. Remember to follow-up with your photographer to discuss last minute details, changes, and requests.
Choosing a Wedding Photographer Final Tips:
Above all listen to your instincts and remember, you get what you pay for!