THANKS for stopping by. The following article was written to give you some tips and advice on how to choose a wedding photographer. Wherever you're at with your search, these tips are sure to help you out. For further questions or inquiries, email us at [email protected].
FOR INFORMATION ON BOOKING MELINDA & KEITH FOR YOUR WEDDING,
Choosing Your Wedding Photographer
You’ve set the date, you’ve booked your venue and caterer. What’s next? Well, usually the next vendor to seek out is a wedding photographer - Your wedding photographer. With so many choices to choose from, it can be overwhelming.
As a photographer (and more importantly a husband) for Melinda & Keith Photography, I’m no stranger to what couples go through. Not only are there a lot of photographers, they all have different styles, packages, and personalities. So if you haven’t booked one yet these tips will surely help you out.
Tip #1: What’s Your Style?
Just like the clothes you decide to wear, photographers choose to take and edit their photos in a certain kind of way.
For instance, photographers who have a photojournalistic style (just a fancy way of saying documentary) take photos that are less posed and more candid. Their purpose is to let the day unfold on its own and rarely will you see people looking into the camera.
Portraiture style can span from being traditional (like family portraits where everybody just stands and stares into the camera) or creative and dramatic (like a couple walking through a field or down the beautiful streets of the Old Port in Montreal).
Some photographers have a Fine Art/ Fashion Flair style. While these two styles are not really one in the same, one thing remains certain, photographers are given more freedom and artistic control. Both styles are conceptual and open to interpretation. Fine art photos are hard to define and can be simple and straight forward or bizarre and cutting edge. Fashion flair can be the same, but more emphasis is placed on posing.
While one can describe different styles of photography, I believe it’s important and not uncommon that most wedding photographers incorporate a bit of everything when shooting their weddings. It’s part of the reason why many of us become wedding photographers to begin with. It is truly a mix of pleasing the wedding couple and the photographer’s artistic expression.
It’s also important to remember that what a photographer does behind the comforts of a computer to your images is a big part of their style. Give a photo that has not been manipulated in any way to 20 different photographers to edit and you will get 20 different results.
Tip #2: Shop Around Online
This may seem obvious, but it’s true. Make a list. Check out Google, Facebook, and Instagram. There is nothing wrong with comparing the style of different photographers, their packages, prices, and (without a doubt) personalities. Don’t hesitate to send questions by email or, better yet, give them a call and setup an interview to meet them in person.
Tip #3: Personality Check
There is no doubt that there are many skilled and talented photographers out there, but how do they make you feel? Do they make you laugh or feel uncomfortable? Are they open to your suggestions? At the end of the day, it really is all about the customer. You need to ensure that you feel that your personalities mesh together or you will never get the images you want on your wedding day. You need a photographer who allows you to be yourself, who will make you feel at ease, and assertive enough to capture key moments, generate some laughs, and be a positive and pleasant force on your wedding day.
Tip #4: Compare Packages
Why are photographers so expensive? Well, the truth is, “sometimes you get what you pay for”. But consider the big picture. What’s included in any particular package? Is there an engagement session? How many albums are included? Are there any loose prints? How many hours of coverage are there?
There are photographers who are completely unique, perhaps world renowned, who bring a crew consisting of an assistant and 2nd photographer, and an army of gear and hi tech gadgets, but at what cost compared to someone who’s just starting out and brings only one camera and one lens?
There are times when you will find one photographer charging $1500 while another one charges $5000. It may not necessarily mean one photographer is better than the other. There are other things to consider. A photographer that has a studio and 10 employees will have more costs to pay so their pricing will be higher, but maybe they can produce an album faster in return. So while the saying, “you get what you pay for” holds true, you have to dig deeper to find out the real reasons.
Tip #5: Postproduction Workflow
What in blazes is postproduction workflow? The term sounds so technical because it is. It’s the processing and editing of your photos. It’s the amount of hours most photographers wished they didn’t have to spend on their computers editing your photos and the style in which they shoot your wedding will dictate whether it takes 40+ hours or not to get the job done.
Remember the descriptions of the different styles of photography? Well part of a photographer’s style is how they edit your images. Are they overly Photoshopped to produce flawless skin like in the ads for Revlon or Gucci? Are your images a collection of 5 separate images put together? Are there stylized effects like having super saturated or faded colors?
Most wedding photographers will include the editing in their packages, but they usually don’t advertise how much time is spent. Unless your photographer is doing an incredible amount of advanced retouching (something you should ask if included or not), then anywhere between 10-15 hours is typically spent above and beyond the amount of time spent shooting on your wedding day.
Tip #6: Gear
Like any other business, in order to offer customers the best images they can, photographers have to use the best equipment they can. Sorry to say this, but are you really going to tell me a tablet made by Acer is better than an Apple iPad? Yes, the name has something to do with it, but so does the high quality, reliable parts and advanced software programming that went into it. Arguably a debatable topic, gear can make or break a wedding day. What happens if a camera fails or breaks accidentally? Is there a 2nd camera of equivalent quality ready to be used? What if your wedding venue is dark? Does the photographer have additional lighting to take your pictures? Part of trusting your photographer is knowing that he or she has come prepared.
At the end of the day, wedding photography is a business. Photographers provide both a service and a product. Consumer satisfaction is essential to continued success. Much like a restaurant with a menu prepared by a chef, the food being served needs to satisfy your palette, and the way in which it is served needs to be pleasant and with a smile. Choose wisely, my friends, and good luck with your search.
FOR INFORMATION ON BOOKING MELINDA & KEITH FOR YOUR WEDDING,
I'm a former rocker turned father, now a photographer. Along with my wife, Melinda, we started our own studio, Melinda & Keith Photography. We photograph weddings in our home town of Montreal, Quebec.
To view more weddings or to find out how we can photograoh your wedding, visit our website