If you're a bride or groom who values photography, the task of picking a wedding photographer can be a tiny bit terrifying. After all, there are no do-overs. You're going to get married once, and you only have one shot to pick a photographer. You're spending a lot of money, and you're putting all your eggs in one basket without being able to see the final product in advance. Yikes! Scary!!
I try to put myself in my clients' shoes when I am meeting with them to talk about their photography needs. When I chose my own wedding photographer, I reached out to a trusted and talented photographer whom I already knew well ... and it was still a little scary. So I can imagine the fear and trepidation that couples must feel who are approaching completely unfamiliar photographers. In addition to this, I've heard FAR TOO MANY horror stories involving wedding photographers not delivering, and newlyweds being left disappointed or heartbroken.
So, from a photographer's point of view, I thought I'd share a few tips on making this huge decision. I know it may seem that I'm a little biased (pick me! pick me!) but I honestly don't think every bride out there is right for me or me for them. So how do you find the best wedding photographer for you?
Three simple pieces of advice:
1 - Make sure that when you view their photos, you FEEL something.
You are hiring an artist with a specific eye and heart. They curate their portfolio to communicate their personal photography style and point of view. You want to resonate with how they see and capture the world around them -- specifically relationships. And if you feel something when you look through their portfolio at a bunch of strangers' wedding photos, you are guaranteed to love your own photos all the more!
2 - Ask to view an entire wedding worth of photos -- the proofs.
Any photographer can show you a slideshow of their best 50 photos they've ever shot and you will be impressed. But that won't give you a good sense for what your wedding photos will look like. You want to make sure they have good quality photos throughout the course of one entire wedding.
3 - Make sure you like them as a person.
Whoever you pick to be your photographer is going to be around you and your family for many hours on the best day of your life. So you want to feel comfortable with them and most of all, be able to TRUST them.
If you make your choice for a photographer based on the above three criteria MORESO than based on price, you GREATLY increase your chances of being thrilled with the result of this once-in-a-lifetime decision.