Selecting a wedding photographer can be overwhelming and leave you with many questions - Why does it cost so much? What are photography styles? Do I need two photographers? and more. Your wedding photos are what you are left with when all is said and done, and you want to have memorable photos of your big day that you are happy with.
That being said, we are here with some tips for choosing the right wedding photographer, and all questions to ask yourself when considering your wedding photography needs!
Photo courtesy of Ryan Chan
1. Pick your Desired Style
Picking your desired photography style is similar to picking your wedding colours or theme - the photos are what will represent your wedding years down the road, and you want it to reflect you and your big day. Photography styles are the different post-processing and edits that photographers apply to their images. By selecting your desired style, this narrows down the number of photographers you will have to look at when choosing your wedding photographer. The best way to figure out your preferred style is to shop around online and see what style jumps out at you. Some popular wedding styles to look into include edgy, traditional, documentary, vintage, clean, and matte styles.
2. Do Some Research
It is important to carefully research your photographer options and take your time deciding. Wedding photos are an intangible service where you will not see your photo results until a later date, and you want to be sure that your photographer is capturing all “must-have’ moments. When researching photographers, social networks and websites are a great start to not only see portfolios but also read up on reviews made by previous clients. The photographer’s portfolio is a great way to get an idea of their work and shooting style.
3. Meet with your Top Choices
After conducting some research it is time to narrow down your list to your top choices. These top 3-5 choices are who you will make appointments with to meet in person and further discuss your wedding. When meeting with each photographer make sure that your personalities really mesh with one another, you want your photographer to understand and be just as excited about your wedding vision as you are. Note: It is important to meet with the photographer who will be taking your photos, not just a consultant or other photographer at the studio. You will be spending a great amount of your big day with this person and you want to make sure you like them!
Photo courtesy of Kamp Photography
4. Compare Packages and Pick Your Top Choice
Wedding photography is expensive and quite often brides and grooms ask why. A basic breakdown of the photography costs consists of the expensive equipment photographer's own (and repairs), the hours of editing required for all wedding photos, insurance, taxes, advertising and studio costs, and more. That being said, because wedding photographers are expensive you want to compare and select the perfect package for you! Consider whether you want to pay an additional cost to have a second photographer. While a second photographer is not necessary, an added benefit is there are more images and a second perspective for all moments that you wish to capture on your big day.
5. Create a List of "Must Have" Shots
Creating a list of the must-have shots before the big day allows the photographer to know exactly what you want, and will prevent any regrets of missing out on candid shots after the wedding. Your wedding is about you, and you can do whatever you want - just make sure you keep your photographer in the loop. However, make sure you limit yourself to only about 20-25 must-have shots - not 20-25 pages worth! Part of choosing a photographer is also trusting their skill and eye to be able to take the appropriate shots, so don't box in his talent.
6. Talk About the Little Details
Some other little detail to consider and discuss with your photographer include:
Provide the photographer with a timeline of your wedding - this will allow them to know where they need to be and when.
Form a list of all people that you want in the photos - this could include family, friends, the wedding party, pets, etc.
Scheduling is key, set aside plenty of time for wedding photos and consider the time of day for certain lighting shots. You do not want to feel rushed while taking pictures.
Consider doing an engagement shoot. This will allow you to experience being in front of the camera and become comfortable with posing for photos. An engagement shoot is a great test run for your photographer to show you how the big day will play out.
And remember to relax, and have fun! :)
Photo courtesy of B+N Lifestyle Imagery