Don’t get me wrong, I’m not suggesting that couples run out and sign with the most expensive photographer they can find. Just because they cost a fortune, doesn’t mean that they’re the best of the best or that you’re guaranteed to love their work. Plenty of high end fashion fashion designers send looks down the runway that we wouldn’t touch with a ten foot pole, right?
When it comes to choosing a professional photographer for your wedding there are important things to consider, as well as the budget, don’t forget style and chemistry.
Although I didn’t set out with a firm budget in mind, I had a vague idea of what I felt was a reasonable fee and my goal was to find a wedding photographer that I adored and we felt was worth every hard-earned penny.
Prior to planning our wedding, I was aware of a few wedding photographers in our area. That familiarity being largely based on the fact that friends or acquaintances had used them. I had browsed their websites casually and googled a little as well. (By the way, viewing local photographers’ blogs is also a great way to see ceremony and reception spaces in action). After I got engaged and I was no longer “window shopping”, I reviewed plenty of options online more carefully, I quickly began to realise what I did and didn’t want…
Finding a photographer who works regularly with a second shooter, not just an assistant to do the heavy lifting, was top of my list and ruled out several people right off the bat. At my brother’s wedding and others that I have attended, there were often 2 (even 3) photographers. They were able to capture moments simultaneously from different angles. For example, the moment the bride walked down the aisle next to her father, as well as the instant the groom saw her. Or, during speeches, we have both the speaker at the mic and guests’ reactions. I don’t want to miss a moment. Also, a photographer who works on their own, will need to schedule two separate times to capture the guys and the girls getting ready separately.
I think this largely depends on your personal taste. By all means, please airbrush an unflattering armpit, muffin top, or a zit, but photos that look extremely altered, with funky colour or digitally stylized beyond the usual filters are not my cup of tea. I can see how it suits couples with a more modern, edgy taste. I guess in this respect, I’m a pretty traditional girl. I’d like things natural and (flatteringly) realistic. I could tell pretty quickly with a browse of a photographer’s blog if their style of editing didn’t match my taste.
While looking more closely at the work of a popular local photographer, I noticed that while her shots are pretty and she clearly has some awesome equipment, the photos seemed staged and formal. Subjects were posed, in ways that I felt were awkward and cheesy. It was something I began to look more carefully for when considering potential photographers. I’ll be crying, a lot, and talking a mile a minute and being my usual crazy self while David will be as laid back as always. We’re pretty goofy together. I don’t think I could keep a straight face long enough for a super awkward pose with my parents, friends, or most importantly the groom. If it doesn’t feel authentic, how could it look right? How will I love it in my album for the next 50 years?
I can be a homebody, I live in my sweatpants at home. I don’t love posing for a camera. I usually end up talking or looking away awkwardly while pics are snapped, or making ridiculous faces on purpose, instead of smiling nicely. This might come as a surprise, but I’m not totally stoked to wear a dress, and be the center of attention all day. It’s important that I feel a connection with my wedding photographer, first and foremost in order to feel comfortable in front of them and their camera, and let’s not forget they’re going to spend a huge part of the most important day of our lives with us in a very intimate way. Up close and personal.