Looking for a Wedding Photographer? Choose the Right Wedding Photographer for You!
Your wedding might be a single day in your lifetime, but only two things will last forever—memories and photos. Your memories can fade over time, but your photos will remain for generations. So do the photos! Your wedding photos will be one of your most treasured mementos from the big day, so when it comes to choosing the perfect photographer, the stakes are high.
How to Choose a Wedding Photographer You Love
Ultimately, you want a wedding photographer that you vibe with in every sense of the word, someone that understands your personal aesthetic and your personality. But finding the perfect person to photograph your wedding doesn’t have to be stressful, as long as you take the right approach.
Step One: Decide What Photography Style You Like Best
First, you’ll need to figure out what wedding photography you (and your spouse-to-be) like. Not all wedding photography styles are the same! Are you someone that wants bright, saturated photos that bring drama? Or do you love a dreamy, vintage feel with soft tones? Take the time to look through different styles to get a feel for what you want. Then, find photographers that match that style.
Step Two: Set a Budget
Your homework isn’t done quite yet, because now you need to go into research mode! The best way to start figuring out your wedding photography budget is to learn more about photographer fees, what different services cost, and so on. With these details in mind, you can set a realistic budget that will cover everything you want without overspending. And when looking at photographers’ pricing, keep in mind that in addition to shooting your wedding on your big day, there are HOURS in behind-the-scenes work to make sure your photos are perfect. Their price reflects all of these hours of work, not just the ones on your wedding day!
Step Three: Interview Photographers
Once you have narrowed it down to a few photographers that match your style and budget, it’s time to meet them. Think of it as a “first date” of sorts because your goal is to get to know the photographer and find out if it’s a good match.
Here are a few quick tips for interviewing wedding photographers:
- Make sure you mesh. Your personalities need to be compatible, especially because you will spend your entire wedding day together.
- Go over online reviews. Before the interview, look up online reviews (or ask them for client testimonials). Then, you can touch on anything important in those reviews during the interview.
- Look beyond portfolio highlights. Prepare for the interview by going through the photographer’s public portfolio, going deeper than just the first few albums they share. Don’t be afraid to ask for more examples of their work, either!
- State any concerns upfront. Does your venue have a unique set-up that you’re worried about? Are there certain shots you definitely do or don’t want? Are you or your partner very camera-shy? Bring up these topics during the interview.
- Ask the overlooked questions. Most people aren’t experts in wedding planning (that’s why you have us!), so it’s easy to be unsure about what questions to ask a wedding photographer.
Some often-forgotten but very important questions are:
- Are you licensed/insured?
- What happens if you are sick/unavailable on the wedding day?
- Do you back up your photos?
- How do you approach the wedding day?
- What makes you different from other wedding photographers?
- Get the details for the editing timeline and deliverables. Different photographers have different timelines for editing, so make sure you know what to expect as far as turnaround time. Also, ask what is included in their deliverable, including how many photos you can expect to receive, how long a digital gallery will be available, if an album/prints are included, etc.
- Understand your rights to the photos. The legal permissions for wedding photos can get very complicated very quickly. Before you sign any contract, make sure you’re 100% clear on what rights you have to the images, i.e., if you’re allowed to print and post them online, if friends/family can print photos, etc.
Step Four: Use the engagement photo session as a trial run
Engagement photos are the perfect way to capture all that pre-wedding excitement, joy, and love – and an ideal opportunity to do a photography test run! An engagement photo session lets you get a feel for how your photographer operates, helps you build a certain comfort level with them, and allows them to get to know you!
Look Through Our Top Recommended Photographers & Reach Out to Grand Rapids Bride for Help!
As always, you can trust Grand Rapids Bride to provide all the support and information you need to create the wedding day of your dreams.
Browse our collection of vetted wedding photographers in Michigan to start your search now!
HAPPY WEDDING PLANNING!
Image Source: al1962/Shutterstock