Looking to hire a wedding photographer and wondering where start? You are in the right place! Today I want to share with you tips in finding the perfect wedding photographer!
Prior to reaching out to vendors let’s determine what your photography and editing preferences are.
One of the first questions to ask yourself is what style of photography are you draw to most or desire for your wedding day? There are typically two types of wedding photography styles: Portrait Photography and Photojournalism.
Portrait Photography is when the photographer uses a variety of candid and posed images in order to capture the personality and mood of the individuals in the images. This type of photographer will be skilled at allowing clients to feel completely comfortable, so that their expressions are natural and relaxed.
Photojournalism is when a photographer tells a story. This style is interested in capturing candid moments as they happen and is less interested in getting picture-perfect shots. The goal is to capturing unplanned, unscripted moments.
I find it most helpful to find a photographer that is skilled at both styles in order to capture those picture perfect moments both candid and posed on your wedding day.
The next question to consider prior to looking for a wedding photographer is what editing style you tend to lean towards: Light and Airy, Dark and Moody, or a little bit of both.
Light and Airy editing style is focused on drawing out lighter tones, blown out skies, and muted colors and the photos are more romantic, soft & whimsical.
Dark and Moody editing style will have more images with deep shadows, higher contrast, and richer colors and tends to have a more emotional feel to the images.
Some photographers tend to be somewhere in the middle when it comes to their editing style. While no one way is the right way other than the one that you lean towards most, it is important to make sure that they photographer has a consistent editing style so you know what to expect.
Research Potential Photographers
The easiest way to feel overwhelmed when looking for any vendor is to go to a search engine like The Knot and Wedding Wire and send out mass emails to vendors prior to doing some research. I recently learned how easy it is to mass email a bunch of vendors on accident and my inbox paid the price!
Do however, use those search engines and Google to get a comprehensive look at the vendors that are in the area of your venue. You want to make sure that you stay close or you might end up playing travel fees.
Once you have a few that you are interested in, jump over to Instagram and look through their images, do you like there style? Check out their website and their portfolio. Do they fit with the vision that you have for your wedding?
Make a list of those that you really like and then engage with only those that fit your desired photography and editing style.
Interview Your Top Candidates
Now you have a list of potential photographers to interview! What questions should you ask? For the most fruitful conversations, I recommend coming prepared to the interview with the knowledge of the services that they offer and what you are able to afford.
On average couples spend anywhere from 12%-15% on photography and videography services for their wedding. Keep in mind that is an average and your priorities may not fall within that average but it is a starting point.
During the interiview I recommend covereing the following questions.
- Ask them to explain to you what is included in the package that you are interested in. You could even ask what the difference is between a few packages. Do they offer a la carte services that you could add on to one of the packages? Do they offer customized packages?
- Ask them to explain the process of working with them, if you select a specific service package.
- Ask them about how they select their second shooters? They key here is to make sure that it is someone that they work with often and that they are familiar with that shooters photography style.
- Ask about the timeframe in which you can expect images following your wedding and how long the image gallery is available to you.
For more insight into what questions to ask when looking for a wedding photographer be sure to check out this month’s podcast episodes when I interview two Loudoun County photographers and hear first hand the questions every couple should be asking when looking to hire a wedding photographer.
In the end this is another vendor that you want to make sure you have a personal connection with! I recommend always opting for an engagement session so you can experience what it is like to work with your photographer and then also what you look like in their editing style!
Talk soon friend! Until then!