Aside from picking the person you’re going to spend the rest of your life with, picking a photographer is one of the most important decisions you’ll make for your wedding. It should be a carefully researched decision, but how do you start when there are so many choices?
1. Pick a Style That Appeals to You
Many wedding photographers have a certain style that they’ve perfected over their career. You’ll have to decide what kind of photographs appeal to you. While you shouldn’t go on Pinterest to find the shot you want to recreate at your wedding, you’ll want to carefully research styles that you and your beloved adore. You can’t want one style but pick a photographer that doesn’t work with that style.
- Documentary: These are candid shots that are not posed or styled. These will be shots of you dancing with your love, or the bridal party laughing together. The entirety of your images will tell the story of your wedding.
- Fine Art: This is similar to the first style, but the photographer will take a certain bit of artistic license to give you dramatic, dreamy photographs.
- Portraiture: Classic portraits will include the bridal party posed with a traditional backdrop.
- Artistic Bold: Much like fine art photographs, these ones are dramatic, but they’re unconventional framing and tilted angles in the photographs.
2. Research and Interview Potential Candidates
Once you’ve decided on a style, look at the local wedding photographers in your area. When you’re starting your research, you’ll need to find an artist who can shoot in the style you want and has good references. This is one of the keys to finding a good photographer. Check for online reviews, and ensure that there aren’t bad reviews out there regarding your wedding photographer. You want a complete professional who will give you great photographs of your wedding day.
3. Style and Personality Meshes with Yours
When you meet your potential photographer, your personalities should mesh. They will be showing you their best interview face for the meeting, but you’ll want a professional who can give you great results. According to Madison Hope Photography, meet with more than one photographer to get the best one that meets your needs as far as style and personality. You’ll also want to ensure that the photographer has a backup plan in case of any issues. Ask if they have an assistant too. Look through entire photo albums if possible. They’ll have picked the best for their website, but you want to see them all.
4. Packages and Your Rights
The dollar amount will vary depending on the package that you want to purchase. Along with the shooting fee, you might want to hire them for the engagement photos or additional venues. Before booking the photographer and considering the package, make sure you’re hiring them for the right amount of time. You want to book them for 6 or 12 hours without paying for overtime, which can be much more. Find out who will have the rights to your photographs. You might be surprised to learn that you don’t own them. The photographer can use them for promotional purposes.
5. Details on Post Production
It can take a month or longer to get your images back from the photographer. Find out how long it takes for the pictures and how many images you can expect after the event. Ask if there will be high resolution images or will they be low? What kind of retouching does the photographer do? Some will only do white balancing while others will do minor adjustments and manipulations. This can also prolong the post production time.
Take your time and choose the best photographer for your needs. It should be one with great ratings, a reasonable rate that fits within your budget and shooting in a style that you prefer. Always ensure that you have a contract with your photographer, and that you read it carefully before signing. This is why research is so vital to the hiring process.