Considerations on Choosing a Photographer

September 21, 2015 Facebook Twitter LinkedIn Google+ Helpful Advice

pick-meIf you’re planning a wedding, you’ve probably heard this already: After the cake is cut and the guests have gone, only your photos remain.

So finding the right photographer is pretty important (right?). It’s also pretty hard with all the options available. There are 100,000 wedding photographers in the U.S. alone — and you’re trying to find the one who will capture your wedding exactly the way you envision it. And you thought finding a husband was hard!?

Here are some red flags in disguise. We are not telling you this to influence your choice — just to educate you.

1. “This studio shoots 200 weddings a year!”
Experience is important — BUT you don’t want a photographer using your wedding for practice. However busier isn’t always better. If someone shoots 200+ weddings in a year, either they’re shooting back-to-back events every single weekend, or they’re hiring other photographers to do the work. If they’re doing it all themselves, do they seem passionate or not? If they’re hiring others, are they a talented colleague or a random amature?

2. “Its a REALLY good deal!”
Planning a wedding on a shoestring budget, makes you look for savings where you can find them? The right photographer can make a budget dress look breathtaking, but the wrong photographer can make even an expensive dress look terrible. Professional wedding photographers pay taxes, carry insurance and invest in high-end gear and professional-grade extras. Before you cut corners with a cheap photographer, ask yourself where they cut corners.

3. “The venue says their good!”
Always, always, always double and tripple-check recommendations against friends, online reviews and your wedding planner before placing down a deposit.

4. “Their distant/close family!”
Weddings are a challenge with a lot of variables — just because your friend takes beautiful photos of sleeping babies, it doesn’t mean she knows how to light a pitch-black reception venue. And what if  the photos stink? What if your images get lost because your cousin has mad skills but no file-backup system? What if your shutterbug uncle heads to the bar to do a quick shot with his brother — during your first dance or something? Bottom line: When you’re choosing a wedding photographer, choose a PROFESSIONAL wedding photographer.

5. “Her portfolio is ahh-maaa-zing!”
Okay, this is actually a really good reason to book a wedding photographer! But it shouldn’t be your only reason. Remember, your photographer will probably spend more time by your side on your wedding day than your own mom — or even your newly betrothed. So no matter how much you love someone’s work, make sure your personalities click before you invite him or her along for one of the most important days of your life.