Ten Tips for Choosing a Wedding Photographer
1. Hire a professional. You have taken time, energy and money to select your dress, pick out the perfect flowers, a great venue, delicious food, fun entertainment, all the things to make for a fabulous day for your friends and family. After it’s all over, all that’s left is your memories. Great photos that capture the entire day will be enjoyed for a lifetime. That’s priceless. There may well be talented photographers among your family and friends, and they will enjoy taking photos of your special day. However, you will be better served to have a professional photographer who is dedicated to only photography and catching every special moment of your wedding in photos. Let your family and friends enjoy being guests! Additionally, a professional photographer will create artful photographs that will commemorate your wedding day forever.
2. Look at the photos. Every photographer is an artist. As in any art medium, the result can vary widely. Your taste in art and photography needs to be a match with your photographer. If you like the pictures that your photographer has taken at other weddings, you will be much more likely to be happy with the resulting photos from your own wedding. And make sure that the photos you are looking at were actually taken by your photographer and not someone else.
3. Like your photographer. Your wedding day will be filled with your closest friends and family. Your photographer will be an integral part of the day. It’s important to choose someone who will fit in. What personality would you like best? Fun, friendly, laid back, serious? Good communication is so important. Choose a photographer who will make a plan with you and help you get the photos that you want.
4. Experience matters. It’s great when everything is going perfectly. Everything is on schedule, the lighting is perfect and the sun, moon, and stars are all aligned. Seriously, the moment you will be glad (and relieved) that you hired a real pro is when things are not going perfectly. A pro can get photos under pressure. A pro will anticipate and prepare.
5. Book Early. Your wedding photographer can only photograph one wedding at a time. Good photographers will get asked for the same date over and over. The longer you wait to secure your photographer, the less options you will have.
6. Get the best photographer your budget will allow. If you are comparing photographers based on price alone, you may not get the result that you want. Remember, most of the items you spend money on for your wedding will be for that day only. After the cake is eaten and the guests are gone….you will be so happy to re-live that day over and over with beautiful, artful wedding photography that will last forever. If you have to cut costs, don’t cut the one thing that is going to last the longest!
7. Two photographers are better than one. One photographer has physical limits. You can only be in one place at one time! A photographer that brings a “second shooter” will capture more photos and more points of view. The day will go by more quickly than you can imagine. Double your chances of getting great shots with two people.
8. Get an Engagement session. When you have an engagement session with your photographer, you will have photos to commemorate your engagement. But, it’s so much more than that! An engagement session will bond you with your photographer. You will learn more about each other and establish a relationship. You will also have proof of the quality of his/her work. We have found at Farrell Photography that our clients are so excited about the result of the engagement shoot that they are even more excited for us to come and shoot their wedding. Additionally, many of the guests will have seen the engagement photos and will also be excited to see what the photographers will come up with at the wedding. The guests are more co-operative and ready to pose for the camera! The engagement photos are nice to have for thank you notes and decorations. We have had many of our couples use the engagement shots in their memory slide shows. Don’t skip the engagement session. It will set you up for successful wedding photography.
9. Sign a contract. A professional will want you to sign a contract. This is important. It protects you and spells out the details of the agreement between you and the photographer. It’s just one more way to relieve the stress that can be involved in wedding planning.
10. Choose a photographer that is insured. We always hope that nothing goes wrong. But, what if it does? Is your photographer insured? At Farrell Photography, we carry complete insurance. Some venues will even require that your vendors be insured. Don’t find out when it’s too late, that your photographer is not covered.
We hope these tips are helpful to you. If you would like to meet with us in person to discuss your wedding photography needs, please let us know. We have a convenient location in midtown Sacramento, and our studio in Jackson. Let’s talk.
Steve and Stephanie Farrell