by Cinnamon Wolfe
It's finally time for my own post in the With this Ring series! I am so excited to share some tips and advice to help you when you are considering who to choose as your wedding photographer.
I know most all wedding vendors will likely think their job or service on the wedding day is the most important and I don't blame them. They are passionate about what they do, they work hard and want to make sure you get the best possible service on your day. However, although it does pain me a little bit to throw out this cheesy line out there....there is truth in it.
The chairs will be stacked away ready for the next event, the decorations will mostly be thrown away, the flowers will wither and fade, the food and cake will all be eaten, the DJ lights will eventually be turned off...but the photos...those will remain looong after the celebration day of your union as one.
So we know that choosing your wedding photographer is serious business. They are in charge of documenting the day for years and years to come. So how do you go about choosing someone for this job? Well, I've got some great tips that I think will help you as you are considering various options!
How do I choose my Wedding Photographer?
If you don't already personally know the potential photographer you are considering, you should be able to get a sense of their personality from their website and online presence.
In this day and age of social media, you should not be surprised by who you are hiring. You should get a clear sense of who they are, what they stand for, why they do what they do and whether or not you will get along with them. You will be spending the MAJORITY of your wedding day with this person. You want to make sure that you click. (pun intended) ;-)
Your wedding day will be hectic enough without you having to worry about personality mis-fits with your vendors. As your photographer is by your side most of the day, this is someone that you WANT to be there.
Image and Shooting Style
This rivals the above in terms of importance. You NEED to know what kind of work this person produces. Every photographer has a style and not every photographer can replicate every kind of style that is out there.
If you love the bright, airy, outdoor look in photographs, don't hire someone who has a more contrast-y and darker look to their photos. Or someone who obviously uses a lot of off camera flash in their photos. Or if that is the look you like, don't hire someone whose website is full of bright and air photos.
If you like crisp and clean don't hire someone who's work is full of deep matte and moody photos. I can't tell you enough how important it is for you to review the photographers work and make sure it is something that you would want to represent your day!
***The biggest problem I see is couples hiring someone that is referred to them by a friend or relative in order to give them a "chance" or will give them a great deal. While getting a deal may be great and helping someone build their portfolio may be honorable, this IS your wedding we are talking about. You will look at these images for the rest of your life. Don't risk it!
I would argue that budget shouldn't really be a factor, but let's face it, it is! There is only so much money to go around and determining your budget for wedding photography will have a large impact on who you end up hiring. I would recommend doing some research on potential options for photography as early on in your planning process as possible so you will get a better idea of where your budget needs to land. There is nothing worse than absolutely falling in love with a photographer and their work only to find out that they are WAY outside of your budget.
Do they have a website? Is it up to date or out of date? What are their materials like? Is it obvious they just threw something together last minute or is it obvious that they are invested in their business? Do they respond timely to your emails? Are they easy to get in touch with? Do they speak to you in a professional, courteous manner? All of these are ways that you can determine if someone is really in business or may not be that serious about their business. When it comes to your wedding photos, seriousness about their business wins. Every time.
And a fifth bonus reason....
Referrals/Word of Mouth
Do you know anyone who has worked with this photographer before? What was their experience like? What did they like? What did they not like? The absolute best way to really get a good feel for the level of service someone will provide to you is to find out how they worked with someone else. If you don't know anyone who has personally worked with them, see if you can find reviews online or ask them to provide you some references you can talk to. If you are torn between two different service providers, this might be a way to help decide between the two!
I hope you find these tips helpful when choosing your photographer! My hope and prayer is that every bride and couple find their perfect photographer for their special day!
Cinnamon wolfe is a wedding photographer and celebrator of marriage. She is obsessed with her pups, hot coffee and cold diet coke and her hot heartthrob of a husband, Paul. When she is not behind the camera, you can find her fingers burning up the keyboard or whipping up a beanie (crochet anyone?)
She is nothing without amazing grace.
To see ALL the posts in the With this Ring series...click HERE