Finding a photographer near you that fits your budget and fits the style you want is one of the biggest challenges for planning a wedding today. There are so many important factors that play into searching for a wedding photographer, & here’s a few things you’ll need to define before you start looking for a photographer.
I promise, you’ll thank me later!
Establish Your Date
It’s definitely good to start following along with potential photographers on social media ahead of time, but before you put in an inquiry – pick your date! A photographer won’t let you book them unless you have a date set in stone, so make sure you’re prepared to tell them exactly when you’re going to tie the knot.
If there’s a photographer you REALLY want for your day but you haven’t picked a date yet, you can ask them what dates they have available so you can make sure you’re able to book them.
Establish Your Budget
Unless you have an unlimited budget (which many engaged brides likely don’t have), you’ll need to establish how much you’re willing to spend on wedding photography before you start searching.
Now, I totally understand that some photographers don’t post their prices on their website & you’ll need to inquire to get ahold of their pricing. Just know, there are quite a few photographers who will give you some sort of pricing indication right on their websites, which will help you indicate what photographers are in your price range.
Do 👏 Your 👏 Research! Before you start reaching out to 107 photographers, you can probably find a lot of their pricing information right on their website. Also, when you search for photographers on sites like The Knot or Wedding Wire, you’re able to filter photographers based on their pricing which will save you a ton of time in the long run (like I said earlier, you’re welcome *bows*)
Establish Your Preferred Photography Style
Like many forms of art, photographers all have a different styles of photography to portray the emotion and tell the story behind an individual’s wedding photos. Make sure you know what style of photos you want before you start searching. Ask yourself these questions:
Do you want rich and lively colors?
What about dark and moody?
Light and airy?
Aside from a photographer’s editing style, also look for WHAT they capture.
Do they focus on candid moments? Do their photos look extremely posed? Do you feel the emotion and story behind the photos? Do they do a good job at capturing unposed moments?
It might even be a good idea to ask to see a full gallery, just so you can get a feel for what your photos might turn out to look like! This is also a great indication of one’s capability to capture an entire wedding day.
Bonus Tip #4
Establish Your Photography Package Must-Haves
I know I said I’d tell you three things, but I just couldn’t help but give you this final and CRUCIAL tip.
When you’re searching for a photographer, you need to know the things you want to see in a photography package.
Here are the things you’ll want to think about when searching for and booking a photographer:
- An Engagement Session
- Coverage (6, 8, 10, 12 Hours?)
- Photo Book
- USB or Thumb Drive
- Online Gallery
- Printing Rights
Do you want an engagement session? Are you willing to pay extra or would you like it to be included in the package? Think about this when you’re on the search for a photographer!
You also should know how much coverage you’ll need.
Do you want getting ready photos? You might want 8-10 hours of coverage.
Do you want photos of the groomsmen getting ready? Want reactions and candids of family members? You might want to consider booking a package that includes a second shooter.
Yes, booking a photographer can be stressful and one of the most important decisions in the wedding planning process, but these tips can help you be prepared to book the best photographer out there! Now, don’t be stressed: these are all things to think about when you’re sorting through the portfolios of dozens of photographers. Hopefully, this will help you sort out which ones are the right fit for you!