HOW TO CHOOSE YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER
Picking your Wedding Photographer is an important decision, once the wedding is over these photos will hold all those memories and key moments. There are thousands of photographers in the UK, so how do you go about choosing a professional wedding photographer for your special day.
First off is decide your style, you can browse our site and see hundreds of different wedding photos by different photographers, however it is important you find a photography style that matches what you want, a style that you want your photos to follow. Shortlist photographers that match your style, be it reportage, traditional or contemporary, quirky and creative.
They may have been taking photos for years, but have only recently started capturing weddings. Make sure they have a good few solid years of photographing weddings. Weddings are very different to fashion shoots or staged shots as they are dynamic, it is a live event, an experienced wedding photographer will know the flow of the day and know where to be at the right time to get those stunning shots.
If they have the experience then they should certainly have a lot of testimonials and great references. Ask to speak to previous clients, make sure they were happy with how it all went and are thrilled with the end result when they got their photos.
You may have found a photography with the perfect style you are looking for, they have some great shots on their website, now you want to see some albums, whole weddings that are complete.
How to Choose a Wedding Photographer
The photographs from your wedding day will be a timeless memento of a truly special day. Wedding photographers can be very expensive, specialise in a number of different styles, and offer a variety of levels of service. Choosing a wedding photographer takes careful thought and consideration about what sort of pictures you want to document your wedding day. Do plenty of research and interview a number of candidate before making your choice
Decide what style of wedding photography you prefer. There are a number of different styles of wedding photography, and different photographers will specialise in different styles. Take some time to read up on and learn about the different styles and think about which one suits you best.
Start looking early. Booking your wedding photographer should be one of the first things you do after you have booked your venue. Wedding photographers are in high demand, especially in the busiest times of year for weddings, and many of the best ones will be booked up a year in advance
Ask for personal recommendations. The best wedding photographers will tend to develop a reputation, and may be known locally to your friends are family. Start your search by asking people you know and trust if they have any recommendations, either through personal experience, or word of mouth. Talk to people you know who have got married in the last few years and ask about their experience
Avoid hiring family or friends. It may be tempting to hire somebody you know to be your wedding photographer. You may be drawn towards hiring someone you trust, who knows you and your partner well, and you think will understand what kind of pictures you want. While this might turn out perfectly well, it is highly likely that this person will not have the technical skills and experience to give you the best photos
Tips for Choosing the Perfect Wedding Photographer
It’s that time of year. The time of year you may well be getting ready to pick a wedding photographer. We do a lot of work with wedding photographers on APW (they make up the majority of our amazing sponsors). And if there is one goal I have for matching photographers with clients, it’s that the RIGHT matches are made. You want a wedding photographer whose work you love, and who’s personally a match for you. Any photographer worth their salt wants the right client for them, not just any client. APW has two in-depth articles on choosing a wedding photographer: one on storytelling/lighting/composition, and another on wedding photography styles. But today, we thought we’d boil it down to our most practical tips and tricks to help you find exactly the right match (or hell, to decide you’re going DIY on your photography).
For some wedding vendors, you really don’t need to care about their philosophy. Wedding photography is not one of those places. Chances are, you’re going to spend more time with your wedding photographer than with your maid of honor on your wedding day, so you want to make sure they’re someone you jive with. The simplest way to start is to sort through the vendor listings of a wedding website where you feel like you fit in. (Oh, hi, APW Vendor Directory.) Once you’ve found photographers you’re interested in, look at their About pages. Those pages are carefully constructed to give you a sense of who the photographer is and how they work. Back when our CRO Maddie shot weddings, she had an About page that really laid out who she was very clearly. It said, “As a wedding photographer, I believe that getting married is one of the bravest things a person can do. It’s messy and it’s hard work, and rarely the result of a perfect love story.” That sets out a very specific philosophy that might be really right (or really wrong) for you. Look for written philosophies that feel like they just click, and then see if that feeling continues when you meet with the photographer in person or talk to them on the phone.
DO YOU LIKE THE PHOTOGRAPHER?
Once you’ve narrowed down photographers whose work you like, and whose philosophy you seem to gel with, set up an in-person meeting (or a Skype session, if that’s what works). Then, figure out if you LIKE them. If you don’t, please don’t hire them. You spend enough time with your photographer on your wedding day that you should find them generally pleasant at minimum, possible-BFF-forever at maximum. (Only you know how much you care about love-loving them, but make sure you like them.)
LIGHTING SITUATION FOR YOUR WEDDING
Before we get too far into this idea of, “Just hire someone whose work makes you feel happy inside,” let’s have a quick reality check. The easiest wedding to shoot is a wedding in the daytime, with a ceremony under shade and great natural light. If that applies to you, ignore the rest of this paragraph. If, however, you’re getting married in a dark church or you’re having an outdoor evening wedding reception, it’s really important that you specifically look for a photographer that’s skilled with those lighting environments. Don’t assume that experience equals skill in low lighting. Look for weddings shot in similar lighting environments in your photographer’s portfolio, and ask them specifically how they would handle your particular situation. (Some photographers use external lights for dark receptions, while others may rely on their camera’s ability to see well in the dark.) If you notice that after it gets dark, all wedding photos in the portfolio are processed in black and white, that’s a hint that the photographer may not be super comfortable in darker situations. (Please note: Your wedding in a Gothic cathedral is not going to look like a wedding in a sunlit field, no matter who you hire, so don’t expect magic tricks.)
REVIEWS AND RECOMMENDATIONS
Every photographer is going to have their strengths and weaknesses. It’s pretty easy to get a sense of what someone’s strengths are (let’s assume taking stunning photos is one of them). The trick is to get an accurate sense of what a given photographer’s weaknesses are, and then decide what you can live with. You can do this by a robust conversation with a photographer. (Just ask them flat out what their weaknesses are. A professional will tell you. Run away if they say they have none.) Or you can ask to chat with a past client. Here are a variety of weaknesses I’ve observed in various photographers (most of whom are kick-ass people and artists): not super good time managers on the wedding day, slightly socially awkward, slow delivery of photos, slow or poor client communication, not cheerful and outgoing with the couple, don’t take direction well.
Ways to Choose the Right Wedding Photographer
After so many months and weeks of wedding planning, you will be surprised how fast your day will go by. Before you know it, you’ll be having coffee with your husband reminiscing about your wedding day. That’s why having the right wedding photographer to capture and preserve your wedding day is very important. Good thing, soon-to-wed couples have a lot of options when it comes to choosing the right wedding photographer.
With so many factors to consider in choosing the right wedding photographer, it always boils down to how important memories are to you. For some, wedding photography is merely a way to remind them of the day. But for others, photography is an art form, a delicate way to tell a love story, your love story.
Start looking as early as possible
When you want to have the cream of New Zealand top wedding photographer to capture your big day, you have to book them as early as possible. This also applies when your wedding date is a weekend or scheduled for a holiday season. The truth is, top photographers are always booked all year-round. So start doing your homework and research early. Many brides book their photographer 1-2 years out. It is never too early to start looking and booking your wedding photographer. It will be a big relief once that is done.
Research for wedding images, and more research
There are just so many different styles of wedding photography, not to mention different wedding packages and photography costs. It is important to do your research, visit as many wedding photography website as possible. Many New Zealand wedding photographers do travel outside their regions, some are free, and some do charge a small amount to cover the basic costs. It is important to know what wedding photography styles you want, from natural lighting to flash, super glamour or natural and editorial. This also applies to the editing of the wedding images. Some photographers like the film look, while others are more dark and moody. As you look through the websites, you will develop a taste of what you want, and what wedding images attract you. It is important to remember that every wedding photographers have their own style. Do not choose a photographer and ask them to copy other’s people styles. It will make for a very uncomfortable atmosphere, and likely to end in disaster.
Interviews your wedding photographers
As soon as you’ve narrowed down your list of potential wedding photographers, you must conduct interviews. This is an important part of your selection process because it will determine who among the shortlisted wedding vendors fit the bill.
How to Choose Your Wedding Photographer
Wedding photography is one of the biggest (and in our book, best!) investments you’ll make in your wedding day. So it’s important to choose a wedding photographer whose work you love now, will still adore in years to come, and who you feel is the right fit for you, your partner, and your wedding.
Along with a wedding video – and all the memories of course! – your wedding photos are among the few things you’ll have as a keepsake of your day, long after the confetti’s been swept away and the last of the wedding cake has been eaten. So having your day documented by the right person is so, so important
Unless you’re a photography buff yourself, it can be hard to compare photographers, work out what makes a photographer great, or know if they’re the right person to photograph you and your other half on the big day. To help, we’ve rounded up some essential tips for how to choose a wedding photographer.
Do Your Research
The first job on your to-do list is to seek out wedding photographers who work in your area and view their photographs. We’ve compiled a handy list of recommended photographers to use as your starting point – these guys come with the One Fab Day seal of approval, so you can trust them to give your day the love and attention it deserves!
At this point, you’ll start to notice how many different styles of wedding photography there are – fine art (dreamy, reminiscent of fashion magazine editorials), documentary (candid, off-the-cuff), traditional, modern, etc. When you’re looking at a photographer’s photos, it doesn’t matter if you don’t know what style you’re looking for, all you need to ask yourself is, do you like their work?