When it comes to weddings, I believe that one of the most important vendors, if not the most important, is your wedding photographer. You might think that I’m biased in this topic given I’m a wedding photographer based in Westchester, New York, but hear me on this and I’m sure you’ll agree with me!
Think about this scenario for a moment, you just had your amazing wedding in the most beautiful venue, the food was delicious, and the party was out of this world! The next day you go on your honeymoon; a week later your come back and go back to normal life. In a few years your have kids and grandkids. What‘s the ONE and only thing you can share that will make your re-live all those memories from your wedding day ?
The answer: your wedding album! Your first heirloom and all those beautiful photographs in it! I already see this happening in my own life. Malú and I got married four years ago, and every few months we relax on the couch and look at our wedding album. It’s amazing to be able to re-live those memories. I admit, seeing those photos make me want to share a tear, or two 🙂
This is why I truly believe that the wedding photographer will be the most important vendor at your wedding, don’t you agree?
Choosing a GREAT wedding photographer is definitely not an easy task. There are many aspects to take into consideration. Below you’ll find 6 tips to help you find the best fit for you:
- Don’t base your decision on price alone: I get it. Price is always going to be an important factor, but it should no be the only factor that matters when choosing your wedding photographer. Find a photographer that matches your style, meet him/her and decide if you like his/her personality, ask for samples of his/her work and wedding albums. Stay away from Groupon! A cheap photographer is going to give you cheap photography and a cheap album. Not what you want for your first heirloom? Perhaps it would be wise to spend a little more and assure you have beautiful images and a beautiful album. Remember, your wedding is a once-in-a-lifetime event, why risk it.
- Don’t have uncle Bob, your friend with the nice camera photograph your wedding or as some bridal magazines suggest, have your friends use their iPhones. Unless they are professional photographers with vast experience photographing weddings and professional photographic equipment, I would definitely not recommend doing this. Photography is more than just pressing the shutter, it is about experience and knowledge to work under different scenarios and light conditions. For instance, would they know how to shoot in a dark church where no flash is allowed? (iPhones would not even be capable of doing it successfully). You deserve to have amazing photographs, don’t risk it on your wedding day!
- Be aware of shoot & burners: Don’t get me wrong, everyone needs to make a living and this business model works for some, but you need to be aware of a photographer who offers you to photograph your wedding, put the images on a USB drive -as they came out from their camera- and send them your way. Wedding photography is more than that. There is a phase of post-wedding editing to make sure all photographs are clean, artistic and beautiful -and there are products to preserve those memories; the wedding album! If you photographer is not offering you that, I advise you to keep looking.
- Be aware of high volume studios: “My studio shoots over 300 weddings a year.” While experience is one of the must-haves on a wedding photographer, a studio shooting more than 100 weddings a year may indicate that they are either shooting back to back events every single weekend or they have an “associate photographer” model meaning that they will send whichever photographer is available on that day to shoot your wedding. If you decide to go this route make sure you review the entire associate photographers’ portfolios to make sure they are consistent (most of the time each photographer has his/her own style) and that the overall studio style matches your vision. Wouldn’t you rather have a studio that provides you with an experience (rather than a transaction) and gives you more personalized attention? a studio that will work with you every step of the way and where you know exactly who is shooting your wedding?
- Ask to see what is not on the photographer’s website: A photographer’s online portfolio can be misleading. Some inexperienced photographers only show images from “stylized weddings”- staged weddings photographers use to create portfolio material. Yes, the images are beautiful and they will give you an idea of their style, which is great! however, this type of portfolio does not reveal how the wedding photographer performs in an actual wedding under time constraints and different lighting conditions. Ask the photographer to show you samples of real weddings.
- Read the fine print: When you are ready to sign a contract make sure you understand what is included in your package, the hours of coverage, the products included, and the image copyright policies. If there is something in the contract you don’t understand, ask for clarification.
I hope that this great 6 tips help you navigate through the large pool of wedding photography choices and help you find someone that will go above and beyond to make sure your get what you need!
Please contact me if you’d like to learn more about our services and the Chris Bojanovich Photography experience.
Sources: Chris Bojanovich Photography, Huffington Post