It can feel overwhelming as you start to research wedding photographers. There are quite a few of us out there, each with our own style and different ways of working, so where do you even begin?
Here are my top five tips.
1. Do you LOVE their work?
An easy way to whittle down your long list of potential photographers, is to check out their past work. Do their photos really speak to you? Would you absolutely love to work with them?
2. Do they have wedding experience?
You might love a particular photographer’s style, but are they experienced in wedding photography? The skills and equipment needed to photograph a wedding are quite different from portraiture or studio work.
3. How do you feel when you chat with the photographer?
If you feel uncomfortable around a particular photographer when you’re chatting with them, then you’re not going to be able to relax in front of their cameras, and they won’t be able to capture the best photos of you, for you.
4. What’s included in their packages?
Does the photographer simply dump all the photos they take on you, or do they put together a wedding portfolio for you, having carefully edited your photos to make them shine? Do they include (or even offer) a photo album and prints? Are they professionally printed to a high standard? The last thing you want is a whole load of digital photos that you have to figure out what to do with.
5. Cost vs What your Heart Says
If you’ve come up with your shortlist, and now down to cost, remember that this is an investment. Your wedding photos should last a lifetime (and then some) – for you to love, enjoy and relive the memories, and to be passed to generations to come.
Wedding photography is an expensive business, which is why experienced professional photographers make sure they charge appropriately. If you see a cheap deal, it probably isn’t worth the risk (I’d definitely be suspicious!). Do they have backup kit with them at all times? Insurance? Will they be able to take the time to sit with you, talk about your plans and work out exactly what you need? Where do they get your albums printed? Will the albums last or fall apart rapidly? Will your prints fade and dis-colour? Do they keep backups of all your images in case something happens to your copies?
It’s worth remembering that many wedding photographers will offer payment plans, so you won’t be landed with a bill to be paid all in one go, all you have to do is ask.