There are so many great vendors out there. How do you pick the right one?! There are a few things you can do while searching for your photographer to ensure you’re getting the perfect fit for your wedding. I mean, your photographer is one of the people you’ll be spending a majority of your wedding day with, aside from your partner! It’s so important to make sure this person is someone you vibe with, enjoy having around, and of course love their style of work. Follow these steps, and you’ll find yourself with a photographer that feels as if they’ve been crafted just for you.
ARE YOU AVAILABLE?
Okay, yeah, so this one may seem pretty obvious. But there’s more that goes into it than you think. A ton of factors other than them being free that day are at play here:
1. ARE YOU PHOTOGRAPHING ANY OTHER WEDDINGS/EVENTS THAT WEEKEND?
Let’s say they are. What if someone reschedules/something crazy happens and it interferes with them being present on your day? What is their backup plan? Has that ever happened in their career?
2. I’M PLANNING TO BOOK YOU, BUT IT’S ABOUT A YEAR & SOME CHANGE IN ADVANCE. A LOT CAN HAPPEN IN A YEAR. WHAT IS SOMETHING HAPPENS & YOU CAN NO LONGER SHOOT MY WEDDING? WHAT’S YOUR PLAN?
Some photographers have associates whom they reach out to in the event something happens & they need backup. These associates are not just other photographers who are free & willing to cover a wedding. They are carefully chosen, trustworthy, talented individuals who they would pass over a huge task to. They are chosen by the lead photographer because they match their energy, shooting style, organizational techniques, and are overall great freaking people they trust to take care of their clients. They are crucial & offer great peace of mind in the event something happens.
3. DO YOU CARRY BACKUP EQUIPMENT?
This may be one of the most important questions. The truth is, you just never know what technology will decide to do. We have to be prepared in the event something happens & our equipment malfunctions. Your day is only happening ONCE, we can’t offer a re-shoot here!
Most photogs bring 2-4 camera bodies with them to a wedding. In addition, 4-6 lenses, lighting EQ, & a ton of memory cards. They are prepared if anything happens and have not one, but two backup plans if their main source of equipment backfires.
With their camera bodies, ask them this- “does your camera have dual card slots?”
This means if 1 memory card corrupts, the 2nd memory card has all of those images backed up. It’s so crucial!!!
4. CAN WE GIVE YOU A SHOT LIST OF PHOTOS WE’D LIKE?
Aside from posing (we’ve got you covered here, but please share any specific poses you just love and want to do!), this could also mean detail photos. Are you bringing your grandmother’s wedding band that you want to be certain is photographed? Is your great-grandfather traveling from across the country to be there for you & you want to make sure we know who they are so we may photograph as much as we can of them? Tell us everything. We want to do it all!
5. DO YOU OFFER PAYMENT PLANS?
Most photographers offer a retainer that you pay to hold your date. The remaining portion can be paid depending on what your contract states. Be sure to ask your photographer what they offer to accommodate you!
6. DO YOU HAVE LIABILITY INSURANCE?
This. Is. So. Important.
7. HOW LONG AFTER THE WEDDING WILL WE RECEIVE OUR IMAGES?
This is totally dependent on a few factors:
1. What is their workload? Photographers who shoot weddings every weekend may have a turnaround time of 3 months.
2. What does their editing process looks like? Check out your contract to see what is included in their editing (retouching, corrective services, etc). These types of work require a lot more time & attention so therefore would tack on some extra waiting time in receiving your gallery.
An important thing to note is that this question should be asked just so you are aware, and not to rush your photographer. They are artists, have the talent, & are promising you their best work! We are just as excited as you are to get your images back to you.
8. WILL YOU SEND US SNEAK PEEKS?!
You’re excited, we’re excited – we want you to see your photos! Sneak peeks are typically sent 24-48 hours after your event. It’s just a little teaser to give you while you wait for your full gallery, & we know you want to share them with friends and family.