You have found the person you want to share your life with. You have picked out your “something blue.” You have found the perfect dress and the flowers are officially ordered. So, what is next? It is time to get wedding photographer advice!  Finding that perfect photographer to document your big day is no easy feat. The market is saturated with quality professionals who take gorgeous photos, but there are a few things you should keep in mind once you connect with the photographer of your dreams.

Even the most experienced pros need a bit of guidance capturing those precious moments from your wedding, so Jim Garner, an industry veteran who is recognized by American Photo Magazine as “One of the Top Ten Wedding Photographers in the World,” has given us some wedding photographer advice and suggestions for what you can do in order to make sure your photographer snaps the best images possible.

Quality > Quantity

Your wedding photographs are going to be cherished by you, your parents, your grandkids and your great grandkids. They should be beautiful, timeless works of art – which means it is important to pick a photographer who creates gorgeous albums using high quality materials like leather or linen. These special items might be pricer, but they’ll pay for themselves and then some when they are passed down to the next generation! Jim says, “you can always save money in other ways – like ditching the expensive professional flowers for some nice DIY arrangements!”

wedding photographer advice, Creative Live

Candid > Posed

Jim says, “a good photographer understands that the experience of a client is even more important than the act of capturing images.”

This means that your trusty photographer should be 100 percent focused on taking memorable and experiential images, like a candid photo of your husband laying eyes on you for the first time! Photographers definitely shouldn’t be fussing around with super-posed shots that will make your wedding look just like every other event they’ve photographed that year.

wedding photographer advice, CreativeLive

Storytelling > Manufactured Moments

While posed images of the bridal party certainly have their place, do you really want your wedding album to look just like your recently-hitched bridesmaid’s? Nope. Avoid manufactured moments by asking your photographer to capture images chronologically: your mom handing you the bouquet, followed by the expression on her face when she sees your complete outfit, followed by your silhouette as you leave the room and walk down the aisle.

“Moments that represent the hours of your most beautiful day of your life have far more impact than manufactured moments with big setups, whether that be extravagant lighting scenarios, dramatic poses or mocked up scenarios unnatural to you,” Jim says.

wedding photographer advice, CreativeLive

Spontaneity > Planning

Your photos should feel natural and candid, but also look gorgeous and professional. Sounds too good to be true, but the trick is finding a photographer who keeps the energy up. You and your soon-to-be spouse are way more likely to be yourselves around a friendly photographer who encourages group synergy, who documents spontaneous moments throughout the day, and who is straight-up fun! Make sure your photographer is willing to participate in and facilitate these special moments before you sign a contract.

wedding photographer advice, CreativeLive

Time > A Tight Schedule

The more time your photographer has to document your big day, the more you’ll be able to relax and enjoy yourself without pressure to get that one “great shot.” Many brides hire their photographers for just the ceremony and reception, but why not ask him or her to come a few hours early? Let your photographer capture you eating breakfast with your family, getting ready to leave the house, or even riding in the car to the ceremony.

A good photographer knows how to use that time for capturing and encouraging natural moments while not making it feel like a photo shoot. After all it is your wedding day. The more time you spend together, the more authentic moments you’ll see pop up in your album.

wedding photographer advice, CreativeLive

Friendship > Professional Relationship

Your photographer should feel like a friend, and how do you build a friendship? Through trust. The more you communicate with your photographer in the weeks and months before your wedding, the more at-ease you’ll be around each other. And the best part is that your photographer will have had plenty of time to get to know your personality… not to mention your most flattering angle!

wedding photographer advice, CreativeLive


PHOTOGRAPHERSCreativeLive is offering a video class with Jim Garner for photographers who want to get expert tips and wedding photography advice to help them in their business. Listen to Jim as he share’s his hard-won industry secrets, guiding you through the creative journey from picture-taker to storyteller. Jim’s passion and expertise shines. Get a sneak peak of his upcoming class in the video below.

Be sure to join the class “From Images to Art: Storytelling in Wedding Photography” with Jim Garner on April 24 – 26 on CreativeLive to get awesome wedding photographer advice. You can also check out our post on how photographer promo videos are priceless and can help your business.

Have any other wedding photographer advice? We would love to hear below! 

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