A Photographer's Guide to getting the right Wedding Photographer
“I'm engaged! What do I need to do first”?
Good question. There's a lot to do! Don't let that daunt you. I speak to many couples and I say to them there are four main things you want to get done first for your wedding day and then the rest are details and it will all fall into place. Those are:
- Date and wedding venue
- Wedding Dress
- Wedding Photographer
These are usually the four things that get booked up well in advance.
As I am a wedding photographer, I am going to assume you have the other three sorted and look at it from my point of view! Haha!
So, how do you find your wedding photographer and what to ask? Well, firstly, do it quickly once you start the process of organising your wedding. You don't want to potentially miss out on your perfect wedding photographer!
Web searches for “wedding photographer in...” or “fun wedding photographer” or “alternative wedding photographer”...whatever is your taste or need. Check our their website and if you like what you see, get in touch. I have a list of 10 things you should be asking your wedding photographer once you have made that initial contact or on your first meeting:
“Are you available?” Not kidding! Don't assume a wedding photographer is! Like I said at the start, wedding photographers get booked up really quickly.
“How many hours do you cover?” There is a lot of variety in how photographers work. I myself offer only one package, which is unlimited all day coverage. Whereas others do limited hours depending on their packages and all will be priced accordingly. Make sure you get what fits you and your day.
“How may images do we get?” Most wedding photographers will give you a “minimum” number they guarantee you. Ensure its enough for you to reassure you they are covering the day as you want.
“How will we get the photos?” Some wedding photographers give you online galleries. Some give you USB's with images on. Some give you both, some neither and only work with physical albums. Again, ensure you're getting what you need.
“What happens if something happens to you on the day?” Backup....ensure that the photographer has some kind of backup plan if there is a disaster on their part and they can't get to your wedding. You don't want your day missed!
“Have you shot at our wedding venue before?” A lot of couples want the reassurance that the wedding photographer knows the venue. I personally like to go to a venue with a fresh pair of eyes as then I know my photos will be unique to you and me. BUT... you have to be comfortable with your photographer, and for some people knowing they have shot at the venue before may help this.
“Can I ask you for particular photos?” Any wedding photographer worth their salt will absolutely do what they can to accommodate your requests. That's what they are there for.
“When will we get our photos after the wedding?” Most wedding photographers will give you a maximum length of time before you get them but if like me, they would try and get them to you before that time is up. I say 8 weeks to cover myself. Almost all get them sooner.
“What info do I need to give you before the day?” I won't go into what a wedding photographer will need to know beforehand right here, but ask and they will let you know for sure.
“Will we have to pay for any extra time?” If the photographer you are interested in does a limited amount of time, then you need to know how much extra each bit will cost if you want them there longer than that package. The last thing you want is the cost piling up past your budget unexpectedly!
And if all sounds good, one more question:
“How much is the deposit and how do I pay?”
What I will say is that most photographers will have almost all this info on their website already, so have a good read through. If you can't or you need clarification, ask anyway. We don't bite!
Good luck in your search!
Find out more about John Woodward and his photography at www.johnwoodwardphotography.co.uk