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Thursday, May 24, 2012

Our top tips when choosing a wedding photographer

Ask around, and we bet that one of the most important wedding decisions you’ll make (in addition to the venue and guest list) is the photographer. This is arguably one of the bigger expenses on the day and the photographer is the person you'll be spending the most time with too. So it’s no surprise that this choice is a biggie. Here are some tips on what to take into account when choosing your photographer:

Word of mouth
One of the best ways to suss out wedding photographers is to ask friends who they’ve used at their weddings. They’ll give you the lowdown, which is a research method in itself! Or, ask wedding vendors who they recommend. Venues have a list of preferred photographers, and other vendors in the industry will be able to shed some light on who they think is worth looking at.

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Check out their recent work online
Wedding photographers worth their salt usually have websites and the online savvy ones will have their own blog/recent wedding gallery (which in this day and age is a pre-requisite in our books). Peruse and mull over these as this really is today’s version of a portfolio. They also usually upload albums on their Facebook pages. If a photographer isn’t really tickling your fancy, move along. There's a lot to choose from out there; the trick is honing in on those whose style of photography you like.

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Experience & Budget
We believe that experience is key. You don’t want your wedding to be the first one they shoot and you would want someone who’s a photographer by trade; not someone who's doing this as a hobby. Established, sought-after photographers who are booked way in advance probably *may* not be the friendliest option in terms of your budget though. We have seen stunning wedding photos by lesser known photographers who have recently entered the market. If you do go this route, perhaps insist on a second shooter for the day so that it eases the burden. This way you’ll also get great detail shots. Make sure that the photographer you want is the one that pitches up on the day and takes your don’t want them to send someone else!

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Packages & timeframe
How much time will they spend with you on the day? Do you really need the coffee table album? How many edited pics do you get? Are they high-res? How long will it take to get the edited photos on a CD and your album? The contract you sign must be written in a way you understand it and go on what is written, not what is promised verbally.

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Getting along with the photographer
Is it someone you get along with? Are they well groomed and have a keen interest in you and your wedding day?

Test run
There is a trend nowadays to have engagement shoots (a.k.a e-sessions). This is a great way to gauge what you can expect from your photography on your wedding day and a chance to practice your 'photo face'!

Some important questions to ask:
• Have you shot a wedding at my location before?
• Do you have an assistant/second shooter?
• Do you have backup equipment and is it the same quality as the primary equipment?
• What time will you begin and how long will you stay until?
• When will the proofs be ready?
• Do we get to keep the proofs?
• Do you mark your proofs? If yes, where and how are your proofs marked?
• How much extra for unmarked proofs?
• Can you work from a photo checklist that we create?

Wedding photographers are seasoned professionals. They do this for a living and many of them have families and bills to pay. Trying to get something for nothing or asking for discount is not really the way to go when it comes to choosing the person who is going to capture your wedding moments forever. Would you work for a discounted salary at the end of the month? Or go to a restaurant, eat half your food and then request to be billed half? Nope, probably not. So with this in mind, choose the one that fits your budget and your vision.


  1. Also try to know if the photographers have made any previous projects on the same wedding location as yours. If they had, be sure to ask some references, so you can gauge where it would be best to do shots.

    Jessie Severt

  2. Travel time can be quite a hassle if venues are spread far and wide, especially if you’re planning a large wedding.
    city hall wedding photographer