You secured your venue, finalized a wedding date and can’t wait to start booking the rest of your vendors. It’s time to celebrate – you’re officially getting married! If photography is a priority, you’re likely starting that search next. You might be asking friends and family for recommendations, looking online or working with a wedding planner to find the perfect fit for such a special day.
Once you find “the one,” don’t forget to do the following two things before booking a wedding photographer!
This is the most important part of choosing a wedding photographer. Out of all of your vendors, your photographer will spend the MOST amount of time with you on the wedding day. We are right there when you get into your dress, cry happy tears with your parents and experience your first look together.
Your photographer’s personality will touch every single part of the day, for better or for worse. So make sure you choose someone who really clicks with you! Not only will it make the day itself much more enjoyable, but it also lends to more natural, flattering photos. If you’re having an amazing time, it always shows!!
My advice? When you meet, take a few minutes to get to know him or her as a person, not just as another wedding vendor. Imagine having that person next to you, all day, on one of the most exciting days of your life. Does it seem like a good fit? Could you imagine introducing him or her to your family as you get ready in your suite? Do you think you’ll enjoy working together over the next year or so as you plan your wedding?
If the answer is a resounding YES! you may have found the perfect fit!
Before signing on the dotted line, I always recommend taking this extra step. Viewing a photographer’s curated work on their website or Instagram is a great way to get a feel for their style, but it’s even more important to make sure you love how they photograph ALL parts of the day.
As fun as it is to pull inspiration from Pinterest and perfectly styled shoots, you need to know how they capture a real day filled with genuine emotions, changing lighting conditions and lots of personalities. The best way to know for sure is to see the final result from a real day!
As you go through the gallery, look closely through all the categories (getting ready, details, first look, ceremony, etc.). If you’re hoping for lots of candid moments from your day, keep an eye out for that as you scroll through. Confirm that you love both the natural light golden hour portraits AND all the reception photos taken with flash. You should see a consistent style across all photos, even those taken at different locations, and it should match the work you saw on their site.
Also, don’t be afraid to ask questions! I don’t mind at all when a couple asks if I have experience photographing in darker venues, wedding spaces surrounded by windows, or al fresco receptions with dinner and dancing under the stars. You should feel completely confident that your wedding photographer can handle those situations before booking.
Finally, once you find the perfect fit, I recommend making it official as soon as you can! Many of us book a year or more in advance, and some of us (myself included) only take one wedding per weekend. If you wait too long, another couple may take one of the limited spots on our calendars. So go ahead, make it official, and celebrate with some champagne!
Because before you know it, you’ll be sitting together as a married couple, going through your own wedding gallery and reliving the best day ever!