Ok, you’re engaged – how awesome is that?! Congratulations! Now lets start planning that beautiful wedding of yours, shall we?! One of the most important things to consider – besides when and where you’d like to get married – is finding all the right vendors, including the perfect wedding photographer, for you and your fiancé. But how do you do that? I’m obviously happy to provide you with any infomation regarding photography so let’s just concentrate on that, as opposed to finding all of the vendors that will help making your wedding day the way you want it to be.
Well, thanks to the internet it’s quite easy to get access to a ton of photographers within just a few seconds so I’d say asking google would be the most obvious way to go. You might get quite overwhelmed with the amount of results you’ll get. It still is a good way to get a general overview for your area though.
You could also go ahead and ask all of your married friends and ask who shot their wedding (and if they were happy with the photos).
Another option is visiting wedding blogs such as Rock’n'Roll Bride, Boho Weddings, Rock my Wedding, Whimsical Wonderland Weddings, Style me pretty, Love my dress, OMG I’m getting married – you might find or know even more than that. These are just the ones from the top of my head. All of these blogs feature wonderful photographers. On top of that, wedding blogs are great to get an idea of what you might or might not want at your wedding considering decoration, flowers, outfits and whatnot.
I’m pretty sure by now you’ve created a long list of photographers you might consider having along for your wedding. Now it’s time to check out whose style you like best, who’s within your budget and who’s even still available. Please note that most photographers get booked up fast for any weekend throughout summer though (as in up to 9-12 or more months in advance). Anyway, please take your time to actually get in touch with the photographer(s) you like. Most photographers have a contact form, just because that way they can ask certain questions that you might not think of mentioning in your enquiry. We photographers understand that someone organising a wedding probably has a million emails to write and phone calls to make but it’s best to not just send out mass emails providing only the dates, without any personal details. It’s much nicer to know who’s enquiring and what you’re looking for in a photographer. If you don’t have an idea yet that’s alright too but please give us some details to work with.
Next step would be meeting your photographer – or setting up a phone or skype call – to get to know each other. It’s not always possible to actually meet every client before the wedding but since the couple and the photographer will spend a good portion of the wedding day together it’s always nice to know who you’re working with and if you click. You might have a few questions that will be answered easily within a conversation and you’ll get a much better impression of each other. Meeting or talking with a few photographers is not a must but it gives you a good idea on who you’d actually want to book if you haven’t set your mind to one person or company right from the start.
Things to ask your photographer:
I know there are lists out there suggesting what you should ask a photograoher in a meeting like “What camera are you shooting with?”, “How many pictures will we get?”, “Can we print the photos ourselves?”, “Can we get the RAW images”, “Can we get all the images you take?”, ‘”Have you won any awards?” (yes, really!).
A few of those questions are valid and good, a few others I don’t get. Unless you’re into photography you might not understand if I told you my camera models. What are you gonna do with RAW images and why would you want to have ALL the images taken at your wedding day (as opposed to the best ones)? It’s more important to find out whether a photographer wants you to sign a contract, if he’s insured or if he’s got back-up equipment in case something goes wrong.
Anyway, ask about the general approach to a wedding. Ask about the contract and go through it together to make sure everything you need to know is covered. Ask to see full galleries of recent weddings. Photographers tend to only show their best work online – obviously because that’s what we’re trying to sell – but you want to know whether the quality of what you already saw is consistent throughout a whole day. If your photographer gives you personal printing rights with your photos you may even ask them for a lab where to print the images.
You may have a ton of other questions too. A photographer is a service provider and we’ve been at loads of weddings and can probably give a lot of ideas and tipps on how to lay out your day or where to look for certain things. So don’t be shy and ask everything you can think of might be important to you.
I hope this helped you get an idea on how to find your wedding photographer. There’s loads of us out there and it might be hard to find the right one for you but with a bit of research you’ll surely find someone whose work you love, who’s within your budget and who you like as a person as well. And that one will most certainly be delighted to be documenting your beautifulg big day.