How to choose your Wedding Photographer?
I´ve decided to start writing a blog for my web site´s visitors about photography and weddings. I will share my personal opinions, ideas and tips for clients and also other photographers.
Starting today I will talk about choosing the right wedding photographer for you, your wedding and any other occasion. I will share some tips from my personal point of view.
Do not waste your time reading any further if you do not think that choosing the right wedding photographer is one of the most important things for your wedding day (almost as important as choosing the right partner to marry) as Photographs are THE ONLY thing that will be here forever to remind you of your special day.
- Trust your gut feeling - check photographer´s portfolio and if you know that what you are seeing is what you were looking for, don´t leave just because his asking price is €200 more then you were planning to spend on wedding photographer.
- Don´t choose by price only - no, unfortunatelly professionals don´t work a full wedding day including the album with 500 photographs for €600 and booking a "cheap photographer" is always a bit of a hit and miss. You might end up getting some great photographs, however I have heard many stories from many couples being very disappointed with photographs they have received from some "cheap and not experienced photographers" and even not getting any photographs at all and I mean it. True story - one couple I know in person booked a random wedding photographer from facebook and ended up saving a couple of hundred euro on the package however they never got any of their wedding photos! They took him to the court to be awarded €2000. But they will never get their wedding photographs. By booking real professionals you will have a guarantee that you will get decent photos. With a professional wedding photographer - you don´t need to worry about the proper equipment, backup equipment in case something breaks during the day (I´ve seen a camera worth €3k failing in the middle of the ceremony), photographer missing important moments such as the first kiss (Yes, I´ve seen a photographer who missed the first kiss on the wedding I attended as a guest - he later said he "didn´t know" it was coming and was on the other side of the church shooting candids). Once you receive your wedding photos it will be a bit too late to say: "Oh, we should have booked a professional even tho it was a couple of hundred euro extra". Guess what.. Photographs last forever and you want your children to open the album one day to show your wedding photographs to their children..
- Don´t choose by price only. Really. - If you expect a great customer service, if you want to have a peace of mind knowing your wedding photography session will be in safe hands, well planned and executed, excellent photographs in the end and a professional photographer who will plan the day for you - from photography point of view - choose a real professional. My grandmother from Germany used to say: When you want the comfort, quality and reliability of Mercedes, you need to pay for the Mercedes. Was she right or wrong..?
- Ask questions - ask ask ask! As many questions as you need to be sure that the photographer you chose is / is not / the right wedding photographer for you. Me personally I love meeting my clients, talking, explaining everything in detail and answering any questions! If someone is "too busy" to make time and meet you at your convenience then they will obviously not be very helpfull or creative on the day either.. Be clear and tell the photographer what your expectations are and ask him how is he going to achieve what you are looking for. And again - trust your gut feeling after meeting your wedding photographer. Make sure you make the right choice in the end and make no rush decisions.
- On the wedding day - remember that the more time you will have the more lovely photographs you can get from staged outdoor photoshoot. For instance - ideal scenario for us is to have 30-45minutes with the couple - just the three of us - for the outdoor photo shoot, usually on the way from the church to the party venue. We always have the plan for the photo shoot as we visit all locations before the wedding day and do our homework. That way we never waste our clients´ time on the wedding day and get the most of it.
- Have fun - wedding photography is about capturing one of the most important days of your life and most of us get married only once in a lifetime so there is no next time.. Having fun while shooting on the day is very important so better make sure you choose wedding photographer that makes you feel comfortable - because having fun cannot be staged. Unfortunatelly for some photographers.. What starts with choosing the right wedding photographer ends up with having a living memory of your Big Day.
What is your opinion on choosing the right wedding photographer? And what is your experience with wedding photographers?
Share your one in comments below.
Best of luck, Mick