While your guests will remember that moment when the bride and groom locked eyes, how delicious the food was at the reception and that it was the best wedding cake they’d ever had, it’s nice to know that your special memories can be preserved forever. Twenty years from now, when you may not be able to recall the exact type of roses in the bouquet or the color of the limousine, your photographs will be a lasting reminder of one of the best days of your lives. That’s why it’s so important to make the right choice when it comes to your wedding photographer.
Whether you’re having a hip bohemian wedding or something verging on traditional and classic, there are still a few basic things you must look for when you’re choosing a photographer. This is your wedding, and trusting it to a second cousin with a new camera just won’t be enough, no matter how appealing the offer may seem when you’re taking a look at your wedding budget. Below are a few important questions that you should always ask when choosing your wedding photographer, to ensure that he or she is the right professional for the job.
This might just be the most important thing that you can ask a potential wedding photographer. Even if you love a photographer’s personality, the quality of their work and the experience that they have to offer is what can make your wedding album a treasure for decades to come
Don’t be fooled by fancy websites and nice business cards. Just because they can hire a great graphic designer doesn’t mean that they are professionals. So much goes into photographing a wedding, including engagement sessions, coordinating photos the day of the event and making sure that each member of the bridal party is in place when it’s time to begin taking photographs. It’s a lot more than snapping images while on vacation.
When you meet with a wedding photographer, it’s imperative to ensure that they will actually be the photographer that will be assigned to your wedding. While many photographers go solo, some agencies work with several photographers. So, when you find that you like a particular professional’s style or methods, then it never hurts to cover all of the bases and make sure that particular photographer will the one shooting your wedding and any other of your bridal events.
It has become customary for most photographers to offer their most popular services in the form of a package. For example, a typical package may include a certain amount of time at both the ceremony and reception. Wedding albums may be included, or they may be discussed separately so that the couple can choose whichever style and pricing they desire.
Additionally, there are typically add-ons that include engagement sessions, or some couples are even opting to have professional photos at their rehearsal dinners. Some photographers may offer all of their services a la carte, so that the couple may pick and choose, creating their own package that will specifically fit their budget.
Just remember that, when meeting with a photographer, to try to see beyond the price tag. Even though you may consider a lower-priced option, photography is not something that you should skimp on, since you’ll be looking at your album for years. And as the saying goes, you do get what you pay for, right?
If you set one rule when looking for a wedding photographer, it should be to never make a final decision without seeing a good portion of the photographer’s work. While you should most certainly thumb through several wedding albums, it can be very insightful to see some of the images that didn’t make the album.
And always look beyond the actual ceremony photos. Check out the images from the reception, engagement session and any other wedding events to be sure that you see the full picture — literally.
A good photographer will be able to dive into any style of wedding and create beautiful images. However, that doesn’t mean that you can’t ask if they have experience with the particular type of wedding that you have in mind. The plus to this is that they may even have more ideas that they can share with you, and some experience with a certain style may definitely come into play when arranging settings and poses.
It may not be something nice to consider, but in any business, emergencies can arise that could possibly impede your photographer from attending your wedding. This topic should be at the top of your list of discussions with any potential photographer. What is their plan for an unavoidable circumstance? Which photographer will be their emergency replacement?
Asking these questions may not be fun, but they are necessary. You’ll want to know that your wedding is in good hands, regardless of any surprises.
Remember that not all photographers will have the same booking process, so be sure to ask each time that you meet with one. Most will, at the least, require a deposit upon signing, with the remainder due at least 90 days before the wedding.
Always thoroughly examine any contract before signing, and check the fine print. If any changes are made to the original contract, be sure to initial them.
Select a wedding photographer that is a true professional, has a personality that will gel with your own and is capable of producing the beautiful images that you have always envisioned. Choosing your wedding photographer is an extremely important part of the wedding planning process. As noted, these memories will be preserved forever, and they will prove to be a reminder of this beautiful day.