Your wedding is going to be one of the biggest days of your life. It is the day that you vow to spend the rest of your life with the person that you love. This is a day that you will want to remember for the rest of your life. This is why your wedding photos are so important. Your wedding photos will be hanging on the walls of your home forever, therefore, you want the photos to be perfect.
A great wedding photo will bring you back to the way that you felt on the day of your wedding. The best way to ensure that your wedding photos will be perfect is to hire the best wedding photographer based on your event. Below are a few tips to ensure that you are hiring the best photographer for the job.
#1 Find a Photographer Who Has Experience Shooting at Weddings
Just because a photographer can take amazing family photos or landscape photos, it doesn’t mean that they will be able to take amazing wedding photos. It is best to work with a photographer whose specialty is wedding photography. A photographer who specializes in weddings will have an eye for the best places to take photos. They will know where they need to be at all times during the wedding and the reception so that they can get all of the important shots. If the photographer has never shot a wedding before, they could end up missing some of the most important shots.
#2 Hire a Photographer That You Like
While your relationship with your wedding photographer will be a business relationship, you should make sure that you like the person that you hire. In most cases, you will be spending more time with your wedding photographer than you will with your bridal party. You want to be sure that you will feel comfortable and at ease with this individual.
When you are interviewing wedding photographers, you want to click with them immediately. If they have a great portfolio, it doesn’t mean much if you don’t feel comfortable with them and share some of their views on love and marriage. At the end of the day, a good rapport with the person you hire is very important.
#3 Photographer’s Style
Many people will tell you to ask your photographer what their style is. Photojournalism, modern traditionalism, and naturalism are a few common styles. Unfortunately, most people don’t even know what these things mean. It is best to focus more on the photographer’s portfolio and less on what they consider their style to be.
You want to work with a photographer whose work speaks to you. You can see what their style is through the work that they have done in the past. If you can see yourself and your future spouse in their photos, their style works for you. If not, it is best that you keep looking. Your wedding photos should be what you imagine them to be, not what your photographer wants them to be.
#4 Hire a Photographer Who Has Shot Similar Weddings
It is important that you work with someone who has shot similar weddings in the past and who can show you these photos in their portfolio. For example, it is relatively simple to shoot an outdoor wedding during the day, as there is enough natural light to take amazing photos. If you are getting married in the evening or in a church that is not well lit, you want to be sure that your photographer is an expert when it comes to lighting. The same is true for the reception. At most indoor receptions, after the meal, the lights in the venue will go down for dancing and drinking. If you want these photos to be great, you will need the correct lighting.
When going through potential photographer’s portfolios, you should make sure they have shot weddings similar to yours in the past. If you want to get the best idea of how each photographer works, you should ask to see the photos of an entire wedding. Seeing just 20 photos of each wedding in the portfolio won’t be able to tell you enough. Most photographers will take up to 800 photos during a wedding. It is best to see every photo so that you can see how each photographer shoots an entire wedding.
#5 Second Shooter
Before hiring a photographer to shoot your wedding, you should ask if they are going to bring a second shooter. It is a good idea that you work with someone who does. During your wedding, you cannot be everywhere all the time. For example, while you are taking photos after the ceremony, you won’t be able to see what is going on with your guests during cocktail hour. If your photographer brings a second shooter, you will be able to see photos of your wedding from two points of view. This is not a benefit that you can get if there is just one photographer shooting your wedding.
#6 Check the Photographer’s Schedule For the Weekend of Your Wedding
Before hiring a photographer, you should find out if they are shooting another wedding that weekend. If the photographer is shooting another wedding the day before yours, they can be tired or burned out on your wedding day. This can affect the quality of your pictures. If your photographer has another event to shoot after your wedding, they could end up rushing through the event. They may not do this intentionally, however, this can also affect the overall quality of your photos. It is best to work with a photographer whose schedule is not booked up for the weekend of your wedding. This will ensure that they will be fresh and ready for a long day of taking photos.
#7 How Far Will the Photographer Go?
During your interviews with potential photographers, you should ask how far they will go to get the best shots and make your day as easy and stress-free as possible. Many of the best wedding photographers carry a bag with items to help in a variety of situations. For example, if you get makeup on your dress, will the photographer be able to get it out? If you lose a button or a sequin, will the photographer have a sewing kit to get it back on? A great wedding photographer will remain calm and cool during situations like these and they will be able to come to the rescue.
#8 Consider What Is Included In the Price and Packages
Before hiring a wedding photographer, you should sit down with them to discuss pricing and packages. If you are planning to use the same person for your engagement photos and your wedding photos, you should find out if the engagement photos will be included in the quote. Also, find out how many photos will be included in your package. Not asking first could result in you paying thousands of dollars or to get the photographer’s extra files. It is best to have the package and pricing in writing before you sign with a photographer.
Finally, it’s the wedding and the reception runs a bit longer than expected, you should find out if the photographer will charge you overtime to stay until the end. You don’t want to deal with any surprise costs later.
#9 Will the Photographer Touch-Up Every Photo?
During your interviews with potential photographers, you should ask whether or not they will touch up every photo or just the photos that they select. If you get a picture that you absolutely love but it wasn’t touched up, you could end up with red eyes, yellow tint, or poor lighting in the pictures that you like the best. You should work with a photographer who will touch up every photo or who is willing to touch up all of the photos that you choose.
#10 What Rights Will You Have?
Wedding photographers work differently. Some photographers will take the photos, touch them up, and then give you a disc or a flash drive that contains all of your photos. This would allow you to choose which photos you want to have blown up to hang on the wall and which photos you are going to include in your photo album. If something happens in your home such as a fire or a flood, you won’t need to worry about losing your photos. Even actual photos are destroyed, you will still have them saved on the disc, the flash drive, or in your computer.
There are other photographers who will require that you order all of your prints through them. This can greatly add to the cost of photos. Also, if disaster strikes and your photos are damaged or destroyed, it can be a hassle to have them reprinted. If the photographer is out of business or has moved, you may not be able to find them to have the photos reprinted.
Finally, you should find out where your wedding photos will be published. Most wedding photographers post their best work on their website. They will also use their best work in their portfolio. If you want to control where your wedding photographer uses your photos in the future, this is something that should be discussed before hiring them. If you don’t want your photos being used for their business advertisement, let them know. You should be aware, however, that many wedding photographers will charge a bit more if they cannot use your photos as free advertising.
#11 Reviews and Recommendations
Before narrowing your choices of wedding photographers down to one, you should first see how their previous clients felt about their work. Most wedding photographers have reviews on their websites. While these reviews will be helpful, you will need to do some further research. The photographer has control over what reviews are posted on their site. Therefore, if a client had something negative to say, you won’t find these reviews on their website. If you want to get a real idea of how the photographer’s clients felt about their work, there are other places where you can read reviews. You can check for reviews on Yelp, Angie’s List, or Google+. You can also check with the Better Business Bureau (BBB). If the photographer has ever had any complaints lodged against them, you can find out on the BBB website. Also, the Better Business Bureau gives letter grades for businesses who register with them. This is a great way to be sure that you are working with a highly reputable photographer.
#12 Delivery Timeline
It can take a year or two to plan a wedding. During this time, there are feelings of excitement and anticipation. The day after the wedding, the excitement and anticipation will be over. For some couples, this can be a bit depressing. Fortunately, you will have the excitement of seeing your wedding photos to look forward to. Before hiring a wedding photographer, you should get a timeline of when you can expect your wedding photos to be ready for delivery.
There are some photographers who will promise the photos in a week and others will give a timeline of up to six months. It is important to understand that faster is not always better. If your wedding is during peak wedding season (June through August), it may take longer to get your photos. If you get a delivery timeline before hiring the photographer, you won’t become frustrated if you think that it is taking too long for you to get your photos.
There is more to hiring a wedding photographer than simply choosing the first name that comes up during a Google search. Your wedding photos are going to be your reminder of the most magical day of your life, therefore, you want your photos to reflect that. Hiring a photographer is not as easy as it sounds. There are plenty of factors involved in hiring the best person for the job. If you follow the tips listed above when interviewing photographers, chances are your photos will be everything you have always dreamed of and something you will proudly display on your walls for the rest of your life.