Picking the perfect wedding photographer is just as important to your dream wedding as your wedding bands or the coveted wedding venue. Even after you’ve walked down the aisle, read out your wedding vows, and danced the night away, you can easily go back and relive those moments through your wedding album so don’t underestimate the importance of a good photographer.
As you might have witnessed already, wedding planning can be both exciting and daunting. From picking dressmakers to caterers, venue bookings, and rehearsal dinners, all of us want to make sure we have the best of the best. The same goes for the wedding photographer.
To ensure that you’re making the right decision when it comes to your professional wedding photographer, here are 6 steps that may help guide you through your decision-making process.
Knowing the style, vibe, and mood of your wedding ceremony and reception is key to finding the right photographer for you. Before approaching any photographers, first, draw a mental map of how you envision your wedding. Look up wedding mood inspirations on Pinterest or take one of those ‘Which wedding photography style is best for you’ Buzzfeed-style quizzes to keep things interesting. Ladies now would be the perfect time to whip out those wedding magazines you stashed in the back of your closet for as long as you can remember.
Depending on if you opt for a more traditional, photojournalistic, editorial, or creative and adventurous style, you can then move on to getting your color schemes in place. Once you have an approximate idea of what your absolutes yes and no’s are, you are ready for step 2.
It’s time for some old-school sit-down RnD. Judging from the mood board and photography styles you’ve shortlisted; you can now start to look at photographers specializing in the same photography styles. Remember, having a friend with a DSLR take up the photography for your wedding to cut costs won’t match up to the quality that professional photographers are sure to deliver.
Shoot texts to your engaged or newlywed friends, look up wedding photographer hashtags on Instagram, or checkout the social media account of local event planning groups like Kavita Mohan Event Planning as planners work with a variety of photographers. Don’t forget to also get an approximate pricing quote while you’re at it. Once you’ve put together a database, reach out to them for an introduction and a couple of sample pictures or a portfolio to help you narrow it down further.
Just like the one friend who approves all of your Instagram posts, you’re sure to have a review board or panel of experts for the wedding’s executive decisions such as the catering menu, for one. It’s time to call the board together again. Clear up a Sunday afternoon and plan a screen of portfolios and gather everyone’s opinion.
Don’t be afraid to go back and revisit photographers you might have missed from the database. The idea is to make the best decision, not the quickest. Check to see if your personalities align and if you think they are someone you can work with and be comfortable around. Professionalism matters too. It’s no rush, take your time with this step.
You don’t walk into a dealership and cut a cheque without a test run, do you? Likewise, a test run is crucial to understanding if working together is a good idea. You get an idea of how comfortable you are around the photographer and more so if they match the selection criteria you set earlier or not.
Once again, don’t be afraid to go back a step and get back to the drawing board. The right photographer will meet your vision and expectations. With an engagement shoot, you have the opportunity to work with the photographer before your big day so you can be convinced that they are the right person for the job. Don’t shy away from making suggestions and recommendations as per your liking too.
Once you are convinced that the photographer meets the brief, you can start looking into the fine print. Explore the different price packages available to match your needs. Post-production details separate amateurs from professionals. How many images do you need? What resolution will they be in? Will the versions you receive be retouched or raw images? Now is when you get the answer to all of these questions.
Also, get an estimate of how long it will take to have your pictures and videos edited and developed. Don’t forget to close in on a final number for the whole deal as well. We do not want any last minute surprises on the big day now, do we? This is also the time you can look into custom wedding takeaways such as instant individual or group pictures with a wedding seal to mark the occasion.
Now that you’ve made your decision, trust your instincts and go with your gut. Pre-booking your wedding photographer is crucial as come wedding season, all the professionals are the first to get booked. And you deserve simply the best to help you create the best wedding experience you could ever imagine. All you have to worry about now is showing up on time to the given venue, the rest will all be taken care of. Is that a wedding grin we see? About time!
You get only one shot at capturing your wedding day, so make it count. Customize your wedding experience the way you want it with wedding planners like Kavita Mohan’s Event Planning Group. They’ll take all the hassle out of planning for your big day. No more stress, no more last-minute running behind the little bridesmaids, no more quick errands to check on flower arrangements. You have all the help you need at your beck and call. Need a quick change in the centerpiece placement? Sure, why not. But don’t wait too long, your dream wedding awaits!
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We live for glamorous Weddings & Events. Kavita Mohan is an award-winning planner with superhuman attention to detail & sparkle in Vancouver, BC, Canada.