During the preparation of a wedding, the bride must put a lot of her trust in a lot of people. This includes her family, her planners, the venue managers and, heck, even faith in her groom to show up on time! Additionally, the one other person that the couple should not have to worry about trusting–are their photographers.
It’s no doubt that they are an essential part of the ceremony. If you think about it, the service, the flower choices, the bridesmaids, or the dinner will come and go and stay in the past, but the photos are everlasting.
So, it’s crucial that when planning your wedding, you choose a reliable photographer. Reliable in terms of the quality of their photos, their availability throughout the event, and their communication with you after. Here are some steps and advice on how to hire a wedding photographer.
- Do Your Research!
It’s essential to look at as much wedding photography as you can to get an idea of what look you want for your album. Take note of what you find most aesthetically pleasing, color schemes, and which moments-captured you liked the best.
- Social Media
If you’re too busy in the beginning, a good start would be to lightly check social media. Instagram, Pinterest, and Flickr are great platforms. You can instantly save, pin, and like the photos you enjoyed.
- Wedding-Planning Platforms and Websites
There are numerous platforms specifically designed for wedding organization. The most popular would be Zola, The Knot, Wedding Wire, Mint, WeddingHappy, and much more. There are also databases/search engines specifically for looking at wedding photographers near you: SnapKnot or TheKnot Marketplace.
It would also be a good idea to keep up with wedding magazines and blogs. These sources often write articles and recommendations on the best photographers and the latest wedding photo trends.
- Check Their Websites
Once you’ve compiled a list of photographers that caught your attention, the next step is to look at their portfolios thoroughly. Make sure to review all their work, ensuring there is consistency in the quality of their photographs. The design and layout of their website is also another indicator of the photographer’s style and personality.
Their websites should contain links to all their social media, so try to thoroughly look at those to view how they interact with their followers and maybe, even past clients. It’s definitely a good sign if their business has numerous client feedback. If you are willing to pay more for someone credible, then client testimonials are obviously crucial in your search. If you really adore a photographer’s work, but they’re still entirely new to the business, then this next step is essential.
- Contact Photographer and Set-Up Interview
Meeting your photographer in person could be the deciding factor in choosing your photographer. In-person, we suggest you demand to see full wedding albums from multiple occasions. It’s essential to do this because they may just show their best photos online, so by seeing all the photos, you can examine if all their work is pretty much at a high level of quality throughout. Also, ask for photos that have a similar setting as yours if you’re having an indoor evening wedding, best not look at the photographers’ work at an outdoor morning event.
Another piece of advice is to see if you get along with them! If you and your photographer have the same vibe and attitude, then they’ll be able to feel passionate about your wedding too. Discuss what you like about their work and point out your favorite pictures from their album so they can keep that in mind and achieve the same thing.
- Compare Pricing Packages
Discuss the pricing in detail. Ask about the general, standard package, and what that entails. Ask what are the “extras”? Does it include editing, special effects? Ask if there is a special offer for an engagement photo session? Also, with the price you’re paying, how many photos are included? Or how many hours will the photographers be there for the price? What happens if you want them to stay overtime? For more established photographers, check online what past clients were charged. For newer photographers, try to bargain, so get your money’s worth. And of course, compare prices of all the photographers you’re interviewing.
- Go Over Logistics
Finally, discuss the details of the event: schedule, a timeline of the day, how many photographers are involved, what is off-limits at the wedding, which guests are essential, etc. Also, get details on the post-wedding process (how long after will you get the photos, in what form will they be sent and presented to you). If you all agree on the process, then consider this photographer hired.
Choosing a photographer may be an intimidating task, but just remember that you are not in this alone. It’s a good idea to have your spouse or friends and family to share their input on who would be the best photographer for your wedding.
Lastly, if you are looking to become a wedding photographer check out my last post.