Article: Choosing Your Photographer

Since most of the couples planning a large wedding with a formal photographer are first-timers, it can be difficult to know what to ask your photographer to be sure that he or she is the ideal person for you. Being prepared and communicating candidly means that both you and the professional working for you know what your expectations are from one another and what the expected outcome can be. The following questions are a guide for you, as a couple, to ensure that you are comfortable and informed:
  • Are you the person that will actually be taking our wedding photographs? If not, can we meet the photographer to discuss our needs?
  • Do you favour a certain style such as classic, black & white, relaxed, artistic etc...?
  • What type of camera do you use and why?
  • Do you use digital format for the photographs? (this is important as it allows for post-production and editing)
  • Do you work with assistants? If so, can we meet them? And do they cost extra?
  • Are you working exclusively on our wedding that day? If not, can you give us a schedule so that we can be prepared?
  • Do you have Plan Bís in place in case of your being late for our wedding or some of your equipment failing?
  • Do you work only as a photographer for weddings or do you mainly do other events?
  • How many weddings have you worked at that were of a similar size and style to ours? Can we see those photographs?
  • Have you worked at our ceremony and / or reception venues before? If so, what precautionary methods can you suggest for the best photographs?
  • What kind of equipment will you bring? How bulky or intrusive is it?
  • Do you develop your film yourselves?
  • Can we have or buy the negatives from you?
  • How many pictures do you usually take during the course of a wedding?
  • Can we give you a list of shots that we definitely want to include in our photos?
  • How do you approach the task of taking pictures of our guests?
  • At which stage of the reception do you usually leave?
  • If we need you to stay longer, how does that affect your fee?
  • What will you and your crew be wearing?
  • How long does it take to get my photos after the day?
  • Do I get a wedding album as part of the package?
  • What sort of post-production techniques do you make use of (e.g. texturising the photos, hand painting one element in the picture, Photoshop etc...)
  • How many photographs can I expect?
  • Do you and / or your company belong to any professional associations or organisations?
  • Do you have portfolios and references that we can see?
  • Are you comfortable with our guests taking pictures while you are busy doing the same? (Obviously, this should be done within reason and the photographer should be given their space and freedom to do their job in a professional and efficient way)
  • Will you have time to eat at the reception? (The photographer(s) usually get a meal and refreshments, so be sure to include them in the catering)
  • Do you have liability insurance?