Faq: 3 Things to Look for in a Wedding Photographer
Woohoo! You’ve gotten engaged, can’t stop staring at your ring and thinking about the day you’ll marry your best friend. What will it look like? Where will it be? Will it be like all the woodland weddings you’ve been looking at? Where do you start? How will it all come together?! I’m sure all sorts of questions are swirling in your mind. Fast forward, the venue is booked, you’ve decided on that perfect date that works for most of your friends and family, and then you start searching pinterest. Finding the right photographer can seem daunting. You begin to realize what photographs you love, what photos you dream of yourself in, and slowly start to see what types of photos you want for your own wedding day! Through this process it is SUPER helpful to have an idea for a few things to look for when investing in a professional wedding photographer just like White Ash Photography whom offer a great service and spectacular photographs.
Over the years in the wedding industry I have come to realize there are really THREE edge factors to look for when booking a wedding photographer.
It boils down to: Experience, Style, Personality.
Looking for a complimentary personality to you and your families, a style that makes you “feel” something that you hope to have for your own big day, and a photographer with a vast experience for different situations.
When your big day has come to a close and you and your partner are looking back admirably, you’ll remember fondly the details that made your day stand out. Of course everyone’s specifics will vary here and there, but one detail that will always hold its own is photography. If I haven’t convinced you enough on this point, take it from couples who have actually been there. Online wedding registry, Zola surveyed 750+ couples on the top 10 elements made their wedding day truly unforgettable. The findings showed photography was voted number two! So take it from me or take it from them, but whatever you do I hope you find this information helpful when planning the day of your dreams!
Experience: Be sure to look for a photographer’s experience of different lighting environments, locations, and poses. Have they shot at your venue? If they haven’t shot at your venue but that doesn’t mean they won’t create amazing images. I would just highly recommend requesting to see a similar type of venue. If you are getting married in a dark chapel, epic museum, or all outdoor space, your photographer should have the ability to light their environment. Many natural light photographers, like myself, love to use the sun and natural light, however we have a lot of experience with dramatic night light and indoor off camera lighting as well. It is important to be well rounded as a photographer. Being prepared for anything to happen is key! The only thing that can prepare a photographer for jumping and adjusting when plans change (and they will change) is experience. Your photographer will be by your side most of the day, they can either decrease your stress and help the flow of the day or get in the way. An experienced photographer will help to guide you through your day and will be ready for anything that comes their way. Being prepared and open to those moments is when an experienced photographer shines and when your most beautiful candid moments are created. I can’t stress experience enough. I have traveled all over and shot in so many different venues. I know that whatever indoor or outdoor location I am booked for I will be ready willing and able to see the best most flattering light to guide my couples to. A few sweet moments that happen in the blink of an eye that I was able to capture because I was experienced enough to be ready and know what may happen if…
Style: The second most important thing to look for is a photographer who emulates a style that you LOVE. When I say LOVE I mean seriously love. I want you to see the images they have posted everywhere and get lost in their photographs. Find yourself checking their site to see if any new photos were posted. This is when you know you have found a photographer who has the style you will love down the road! Your wedding photographs are all you will have in 15 years to reminisce on all the events of the day. I recommend looking through your friends wedding photographs, pinterest, google, and anywhere else you can find inspiration. You will begin to see the style that you love and what about the images is most important to you. When you begin getting recommendations for photographers and searching their sites you will then be able to see initially if they fit your style. You want to trust your photographer and what they have shown you so much before the wedding day that on the day of you are able to let go, enjoy yourself, and KNOW that they are getting exactly what you’ve always dreamed of! Choose a photographer that you absolutely 100% have faith in and trust with your memories. I want you to be over the moon with your wedding images when you receive them, so I can’t stress this trust in your photographer’s work enough. (Funny enough it all goes back to experience, a photographer with a lot of well-rounded experience will automatically instill the trust you need!)
Personality: Lastly, look for a photographer who you mesh with. I want my couples to click with me! I want to feel like we appreciate similar things, value the same memories, and interact in a playful loving way. Your photographs will be affected by your photographer’s energy, emotions, and involvement. Thus, finding a photographer that reads your language and can sense when you’re ecstatic and uncomfortable. A photographer with professional experience can sense when you’re about to tear up, it’s like we have a sonar that builds over time for emotional moments. My senses are heightened when staring through my lense. I will even tear up at times, I can’t help it, I’m a sap. I am looking for moments that I would want to have in 10 years of my parents, nieces, grandparents, and besties. I want your photographs to capture the essence of your loved ones on your wedding day. Their personality doesn’t need to mirror yours, it just needs to understand you…“Get you”. Just like they said when you found your dress, well you’ll know when you meet your photographer! You’ll just click. Your engagement session will fly by and on your wedding day it’ll feel like we were long lost friends. That’s the personal connection I want to have with each of my couples. Their personality before and during your wedding day should make you want to be their friend after your wedding (I can’t even tell you how many of my couples keep in touch and have met me for dinner long after their wedding is over.)
*You’ll notice price is not listed, budget is something completely separate and personal. I highly recommend finding your comfort budget and your stretch budget first. (Check out a future post to read my thoughts on REAL budgeting)