Selecting a wedding photographer is a huge decision. After all, once the wedding day is over, the flowers, decorations, food, and cakes are gone and what you have left are the memories. if you’ve selected the right photographer, every time you look at your images those memories will come flooding back in living color. So, choose wisely. The information in the following blog is loosely based on an article by Alan Schwartz where he discusses his 6 Ps of selecting a wedding photographer.
Portfolio – Get online or ask to see samples of the photographer’s work. Not just the few shots that are used on the front page of the website but look at entire weddings. What you’ll need to see is if his/her style matches your expectations. Do you want the traditional images of mostly posed photos of standard elements of a wedding, or do you prefer a more journalistic approach, where the photographer finds interesting environments and encourages people to relax and interact? It seems the trend now is a combination of these two, a cross between candid/spontaneous shots that capture genuine moments as they happen, along with some of the traditional family and bridal party photos. This would be more of an Illustrative Style that tells the story of their special day.
Personality – It is important that you meet with your photographer(s) well before your wedding day. A consultation meeting and during the engagement session are both great times to get to know your photographer. After you’ve met, you should feel like, YES, this guy (or gal) is for me. He/she made you feel comfortable and understands your needs. Sometimes it’s just a gut feeling.
Professionalism – It is important that your photographer is licensed and insured. There is only one chance to get the pictures right so experience is important. Will there be only one photographer, or is there a second shooter? What kind of equipment is used? Do they use natural lighting and/or do they have lighting equipment? Does he have back up equipment? Is there a studio? Does she belong to any professional organizations, won any awards, or have any community involvement? Look for referrals!
Planning – Is your photographer able to help you with planning for the big day? Have they had plenty of wedding experience? Are they familiar with the venues and other vendors? He/she may have ideas or suggestions that can help make the day even more perfect.
Package Pricing – Most professional photographers will have different options when it comes to pricing. The cost range will depend on the extras – engagement sessions, wedding albums, how much time is spent at the event, travel, etc. Be sure to compare options, but most importantly, be sure the photographer is experienced with weddings. This is no time to skimp!
Post Production & Products – There will be hundreds or even thousands of images for him/her to go through, making decisions as to what to keep and what just didn’t work, to edit and color correct, and finally to provide you with the perfect images. In general, your photographer should have your images ready for viewing within a month of the wedding day. Once the editing is done, your photographer can create your custom wedding album, beautiful wall portraits, and creative slideshow presentations.
Once you’ve decided what photographer is right for you, keep in touch so they can stay informed of your plans. The more they know, the better able they are to be in the right place at the right time. As Photos By Gum says, “You have a story to tell, and we want to tell it.”
You can check them out at www.photosbygum.com