How To Find And Book The Right Photographer For You
Hey you! Thanks so much for stopping by! If you're reading this, my senses tell me you're on the hunt for a wedding photographer so sit back, grab a vino and let me take you to school on how you can score the wedding photographer of your dreams.
1. Got Style?
Your first tip on finding your dream wedding photographer is STYLE! I found some of my favorite New Zealand Photographers on Instagram and Facebook, not to mention those lovely wedding blogs like Auckland Weddings and Together Journal for inspo. Ask yourself, do you like their work, their approach, the way they edit? Are you a dark and moody fan or love the vibrant colours? Are you classic vibes or prefer a documentary look? When you imagine your wedding photos what do they look like? Once you have your vision down you are on your way! This is where the gold is, this is where you will get a better feel and understanding of their work and how they tell a story, your story! Be wary of Pinterest, while it has some amazing content, one photographer cannot hope to capture all of the images you see on there, keep in mind that it is a collection of work from hundreds of photographers who are usually sharing one or two images from a full day. Manage your expectations and go straight to a photographers blog, this is where the gold is, this is where you will get a better feel and understanding of their work and how they tell a story, your story! Got a few? lets move on to tip 2!
2. Do you click?
Its all about connection! The time spent with your photographer before, during and after your wedding day may be more than you realize! Not only are we communicating a bunch before the big day, we are with you from the very first stroke of mascara right up until the very last sparkler fades so its key that we get along. Whether its a Skype or face to face meet ask yourself, did you leave the exchange feeling comfortable, like you'd made a friend? Someone you would feel comfortable being a part of your day? Having that trust and connection is invaluable and means that when you do get in front of the camera, you're more likely to be relaxed and having a good time which makes for epic photographs! 1 2 3 click!!
One thing I hear time and again is trust. Trust your photographer and their process. Lean on them during your planning stage, they are a wealth of knowledge, more so than your other vendors, why? They do this every weekend and spend the whole day with bride and grooms such as yourselves! They know the best time of day for photos, how long its going to take and can even recommend some awesome vendors, heyooo your planning just got a little easier! Trust that they will be working hard to deliver the shots of your dress, your squad and one with your mum but also the in between moments that make up the story of your day. Trust that they have your best interest at heart and are busy doing everything they can to absolutely nail it, including looking after their gear, backing up your photos and attending workshops to stay educated and up to date with the fast paced world of photography. Trust that in 6-8 weeks you will receive images that you will love and reflect you as a couple :)
4. iS THERE A CONTRACT?
A professional photographer will have a contract for you to sign, usually before you book. This outlines the responsibilities of the photographer and their limitations on the day. This also covers the question of copyright. A photographer will usually hold the copyright to the images, don’t get me wrong, the images are yours to share with family and friends, you can print them, put them in an album or make a scrap book, whatever you like! This clause is to protect the photographers images from being used as advertising by other vendors who have not used the photographers services and are receiving images for free. The contract may also have some other clauses as well about deposits and editing style. Be sure you understand fully what is in the contract and always feel free to ask your photographer about any clause that you do not understand, we all want to be on the same page.
5. The investment
The value of wedding photography lasts a lifetime and apart from a few keepsakes from your day, when all is said and done, the photographs are what remains. I understand weddings are expensive, I do, I also speak to countless couples who wish they had booked a professional photographer or who hired a 'friend of a friend' and were left disappointed. While wedding photography can cost a bit of coin there is no investment quite like it. A seasoned professional who has appropriate gear (and knows it inside and out) who can direct you with ease into comfortable positions, who has up to date software/equipment to edit and back up your files and who has a few years under their belt is going to charge upwards of $2500, not because they want to rip you off but because their level of skill, expertise and gear they use is valuable. Their hard work is not limited to the hours spent with you on the wedding day but countless hours leading up to and afterwards, editing your images to perfection. I also want to mention that we are creating art on the spot, in different locations, in different light and with different people, all the while carrying the pressure of capturing one of the most important days of your lives. When you look through your photos you'll see and re-live his reaction when you walked down the aisle, the laughs between you and your best friends, the family young and old and the tears you shed as you spoke your vows to one another. Your photographer is working behind and in front of the scenes to provide you with an incredible service leading up to your wedding day, the coverage of it all and a beautiful product that will serve you for years to come. Honey, this is a day you cannot get back, I encourage you, on your quest to finding your dream wedding photographer, invest in someone who's work you love, who you want around on your wedding day and who you trust. That's where the magic is :)