Your first thought when you think about hiring a wedding photographer is probably ‘What should I look for in a wedding photographer?’ when in fact, you’re not quite there yet. If you’re just about to start your search for a wedding photographer, read on for some useful advice on what to ask yourself before searching for a wedding photographer. I often hear that choosing their wedding photographer was one of the most difficult tasks couples faced. I can completely relate to that! So here are the five questions to ask yourself before searching for a wedding photographer.
When you hire a wedding photographer, you’re buying something that you can’t yet touch or even see, what you’re buying remains in the mind of the photographer. Sure you can see their past work, but you’ve got to be able to imagine yourself and your wedding story in place of what you’re seeing. You have to decide whether or not this total stranger can tell your wedding story. Ultimately, your wedding photographer’s style needs to be not just one you like, but adore.
There are other reasons that couples may find choosing a photographer so daunting. The obvious reason is that it’s usually something that they’ve never done before! For many couples, their wedding is the only occasion for which they’ll hire a professional photographer. The only way to make this process easier and manageable is to start with what you know best; yourselves! Here’s what to ask yourself before you begin looking for a wedding photographer.
I. How important is photography to us in comparison to other parts of the wedding?
If you’re wedding photography IS really important to you (and why wouldn’t it be? It’s going to be a lifelong reminder of the most special day you’ll ever share as a couple), your budget needs to reflect this. Think about booking your photographer before you’ve booked anything else. You can allocate the money you need to get the wedding photographs you truly want.
II. What style of photography are we most drawn toward?
There are so many styles of wedding photography that it can feel daunting for someone who doesn’t know the subject very well to keep up! Do your research. Spend some time researching different styles of wedding photography until you find a style that resonates with you. I’ve written a great article on photography styles here.
III. What is the most important thing we want our photographer to capture for us?
Whether it’s the connection the two of you share or the venue you’ve grown up dreaming of. Or it may be the laughter, the tears and the joy of your day. Think about what’s most important to you. It’s vital you get this right. If you choose a wedding photographer whose style is very posed and clean but you care most about the raw emotion and candid moments, then you’re going to have some clashes between what you want and what the reality may be. Make sure you define your priorities. More importantly, ensure you both agree. When you begin looking for your wedding photographer, you can compare their existing portfolio against these priorities.
IV. How do we want our wedding photographs?
In this digital age, it’s all too easy to forget about how you would like to display and store your wedding photographs. There are so many methods photographers use to ‘deliver’ images such as USB’s, online galleries, albums, prints etc that it can be hard to choose how you would like yours presented to you. All photographers will offer something different, I personally offer people digital photographs by default and give couples the option to add in things like wedding albums or prints should they want them. This isn’t because I don’t like these things, I LOVE THEM and I truly believe you should view your photographs how they were meant to be seen, which is printed but this is expensive and can add to the cost of your wedding photography rather drastically which can be a real nuisance if this isn’t something you really care about.
V. Who will be part of the decision-making process in hiring our photographer?
Happy marriages start on equal footing and I really believe you should both be involved in choosing your wedding photographer but for some, wedding photography isn’t a big deal to them. Sometimes, brides choose to make the decision with their mothers or fathers and that’s okay so long as your partner gets a say if he or she wants one. Don’t be pressured into choosing a photographer someone else likes, focus on the priorities you’ve created above and use the knowledge you’ve gained in different wedding photography styles to come to a decision that makes the most important people at the wedding happy (if you hadn’t guessed, that’s the couple!)
If you take just a little time to think about these questions and more importantly, your answers to them, you’ll find choosing a wedding photographer so much easier. These are the tools you need to find the perfect wedding photographer to tell your wedding story. If you’re looking for a Cambridgeshire based photojournalist wedding photographer who can tell your wedding day story in a magical, emotion invoking way – why not check out my work to see if I’m the right person for you after asking yourself all the questions above!