Congratulations on your recent engagement! Before you're able to fully process the beautiful ring on your finger, everyone is going to be asking, “So when's the big day?” Once you choose a date and location, the next big thing to tackle is finding the perfect wedding photographer to capture your big day.
When it comes down to it, remember that wedding photographers come in all shapes and sizes. No two are the same. Your best friend may have had a “veteran” who just got to get that perfect pose for every picture. That does not mean you have to have the same! You're going to get a lot of opinions and unsolicited suggestions from family and friends, but first and foremost you need to remember that this is your big day. No one else's.
If you're a youngger bride, you may find yourself frustrated that your mom has a strong preference for traditional photographers, rather than the hip, unconventional and modern trends that seem to be prevalent right now. Now, there's nothing wrong at all with a traditional approach, but thanks to this new age of digital photography, and resources like Pinterest, your options really are limitless. Let your mother know that just because you may have modern, or “unconventional” tastes, does not mean you're going to skip out on the traditional family shots and whatnot. Every good photographer is going to make sure you get these.
Choosing Your Photographer
So then, how do you go about finding the right photographer for your special day? What questions do you ask? Again, breathe and remember that this is your day, and your photographer is honored to play such an important role in it. Your photographer is there to cater to your needs. Consider the following four questions to help you figure out who will absolutely be capturing the magic of the day.
1. What's Your Style?
Traditionally, formal photographs were the go-to style. Nowadays, there is a strong preference for photojournalistic (or candid) photography. Do you lean more towards the romantic, posed shots popular on Pinterest? Or do you prefer something more candid, like your dad holding back his tears, your mom laughing with the wedding party, or the guests cutting a rug on the dancefloor? Once you determine the style of photography you want, you'll find that you can narrow your choices in photographers down significantly. You'll also find that many photographers are able and willing to tweak their style based on what you want.
2. One or Two Photographers?
Many brides and grooms are making the decision to hire two photographers to shoot the wedding. This is a great way to get two perspectives during the ceremony, with one photographer up close and personal, while the other is at a distance. It also allows you to have the best of both worlds: one photographer can focus on shooting candid shots, while the other is busy posing the wedding party. Take care when booking a second photographer, however, as many photographers have clauses in their contracts that prohibit other photographers working the same events as them.
3. What are the Package Details?
You already know what your photographer is going to provide (your wedding pictures), but how is he / she going to provide it? Will they give you a CD of all of your images (in hi-res so you can print your own with a copyright release), prints, canvases, or full wedding albums? Be sure to get all of the details about your potential photographer's package options.
4. What's Your Theme?
Does your wedding have a theme? Some brides and grooms envision rustic or vintage themes, and really let their creativity flow. The end result are unique, memorable wedding photos that they can cherish forever. Before you even begin shopping for a photographer, try to envision exactly how you want your wedding to look (chances are you already have!). It can not be stressed enough that your wedding is your time to shine, so make it all about you and what you want!