We know that choosing a wedding photographer can seem like a daunting task. You only have one shot (pun not intended) at capturing every precious moment– no do overs or repeats! Beyond the style you are looking for- photojournalistic, traditional, dramatic, to name a few- there is still location, price, and personality to consider! While there is no real science in how to choose a wedding photographer, there are certainly ways of ensuring you pick the right one.
This is where one of our most trusted photographer, Derek Jenkins, steps in to save the day, with six tips that we feel are a great starting point for brides. His advice for how to choose a wedding photographer not only acts as a helpful guide for engaged couples, but are points for wedding photographers to keep in mind while communicating their strengths with potential clients.
“I’ve put a lot of thought into what I do, and through the years I’ve been able to more clearly identify what I feel is important. These tips for how to choose a wedding photographer are biased inasmuch as they are things that I, being a photographer, have come to value.”
How to Choose a Wedding Photographer
1. Be intentional
“Don’t feel like you have to do what the professionals recommend. Don’t want to see each other before the wedding? Don’t. Many photographers and planners will pressure you to, giving you more time for portraits. Want to have a ‘first look’? Do it. The point is to decide how you want your day to go and find a photographer that will work with that. Remember, this day is about your wedding, not a photo shoot. Plan around your how you want to celebrate, not around the vendors.”
2. Look for moments
“If a photographer describes themselves as a photojournalist, look carefully at all of their photos on their website. What kind of moments are they catching? Compare a photographers words with their work. Make sure they deliver what they promise. Also, resist product salesmen. Look primarily at the images. Good images are worth much more than the newest type of print product.”
3. Keep price in its place
“We all have budgets. But when looking at a photographer, remember, price isn’t everything. Remember that your photographs will last a lot longer than the food or flowers. If photography is important to you, try to allocate a larger portion of your budget to it. And if a photographer’s price is outside of your budget, try respectfully telling them how much you can afford. Sometimes they can work with you, sometimes they can’t.”
4. Ask around
“If a friend recommends a photographer ask to see what they received, and look at all of them. Ask about their experience with the photographer. How did they act during the day, were they directive or passive? What was their presence like? There is so much more involved than just good images.”
5. Think before you click
“Decide what you want in a photographer before you start emailing them. Discuss why you want to choose a wedding photographer and what kind of photos you will want to see on your thirtieth anniversary. There are a lot of different kinds that provide very different results. Shop for the long-term”
6. Find resonance
“If you have to convince yourself or talk yourself into choosing someone, maybe they’re not the one. There are plenty out there. Look for someone whose style and approach really resonate with you and who gets you excited about celebrating and memorializing your wedding in photographs.”
“Remember that photographers can be great resources (though we will be slightly biased toward our own values). Ask lots of questions. Figure out what you want. And most importantly, enjoy this practice in joint decision-making as you prepare for the wonderful adventure of marriage!”
And there you have it, folks. How to choose a wedding photographer, by Derek Jenkins. Picking your lucky candidate may still not be easy, but mistakes can be avoided by following this great advice from one of our most trusted photography sources. To read the full article, visit “6 Tips on Choosing a Photographer”. You can also see more from this Columbia, Missouri wedding photographer by visiting Derek’s website.
SnapKnot helps connect engaged couples with wedding photographers based on budget, location, and visual-styles. For more information on wedding photography prices, and how to keep your wedding planning simple, visit our website.
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