Sunday, April 17, 2011

How to choose the best wedding photographer for YOU

Originally posted on April 13, 2011 on the photography blog.

So many decisions when planning a wedding. It's exciting, it's fun...and it's even a little overwhelming. Here is a little help when making the choice of who should be at your wedding capturing the memories of the day.

Your wedding photographer is one of the first people you'll see on your wedding day that will make the day feel like it's really finally here! Your wedding photographer is likely to be one of the last people you see before you walk down the aisle and the first person you see as you walk back down the aisle with your wedding band newly placed on your finger!

When your wedding day is said and done what you'll have left after all of the planning and anticipating and your perfectly executed wedding day will be the images. These will hold your memories and be the piece of your incredible day that gets passed from generation to generation. These are what you'll pull out at anniversaries, on date nights, and just when you're wanting to remember the magic that made your day your day. This is why your photographer choice is important and this is why we take our jobs very very seriously.

Things to look for when choosing a wedding photographer:

Someone who is willing to meet with you, just to get to know you and for you to get to know them. It takes personally meeting with your photographer to determine if they are the best match. Their website or a referral alone won't give the whole perspective.

Consider the photographer's style and skills. Browse their portfolio and blog. Is there consistency? Can they work under a variety of conditions and scenarios? Every photographer has a unique vision - do they provide the "look" that you would like for your wedding images?

Does the photographer work alone or as a team? Josh and I work as a wife-husband team and it rocks. We get to work together doing what we love and our work and life are intermingled. We love that. It shows in our work and our interactions with our clients. We each know where the other is going to be and have no problem critiquing and pushing each other to always improve. Another benefit is allowing your "photographer" to be in two places at once!

How about engagement sessions? We believe pre-wedding engagement sessions are essential and greatly improve both the relationship and the final images. When we've had a couple of hours to hang out with our clients before the intensity of the wedding day - it makes things go that much more smoothly. This is why we include engagement sessions with every wedding service, and would encourage you to invest in an engagement session with whoever you choose to capture the images for your wedding day.

Weddings are a big deal. Make sure your photographer has back up equipment with them. Make sure they have a plan if they are deathly ill and can't make it unexpectedly. Make sure your photographer is insured.

Consider what final products you would like to have. Album? Guest book? Digital files? Wall Portraits? Something else? Something more? There are numerous options and you may want to think through this a little in case there's anything you absolutely must have after (or for) your wedding day. When you know what those products are you can be sure to find a photographer who can provide these items. Product quality is important too.

Think long-term too. You could be planting the seeds of a lasting relationship with someone to be your family's photographer for life.

Above all else, seek out a photographer or team that you like. You're going to be spending a lot of time working together, and you want them to see your day the same way as you do. If you meet with your potential photographer and you lose track of time talking about all sorts of interesting things - consider it a match!

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