The Perfect Wedding Photographer
Every bridal pair wants precious snap-shots of their successful wedding ceremony and celebration. Out-of-focus and blurry photos would be catastrophic. You’ll learn how to find a professional photographer who will be sure to capture emotion-filled and authentic moments from your wedding in the following article.
1. The difference between an amateur and a professional photographer
In order to protect yourself from disappointment with terrible photos after a successful wedding, it’s recommended to employ a photographer who specialises in wedding photography. They should also already have several years of experience. As a result of hiring the right man or woman for the job, you’ll be left with quality photos that will eternalise your memories of your special day.
There are a few attributes that separate amateur and professional photographers. Many professional photographers have their own photo studios where they can conduct sample photo shootings for the bridal pair before the wedding. For this shoot, they will usually use the same professional equipment that they would later use at your wedding. Professional photographers will personally meet with you and explain their approach. During this meeting the photographer will also discuss with you how much time different shoots during the celebration will require specifically for your chosen venue. They are also aware of how tight the schedule can be during a wedding.
How do you find the best photographer for your wedding?
There are many different approaches on how to best plan your special day. Some bridal pairs hire a wedding planner who can also take care of hiring a photographer for you. For those who want to take matters into their own hands, you should set aside enough time to find the best professional photographer. You should keep in mind before and during your search that the best photographers are often quickly fully booked. To avoid having to settle for less you should start your search for a professional photographer about a year in advance.
Friends, acquaintances, and family members can be very helpful during the search for a photographer. You can get an idea of the different ways a wedding can be photographed by looking at other wedding photographs. This can give you an idea of how your own wedding photos would turn out. Only professional photographers know how to produce high-quality photographs that will not disappoint you.
The fastest way to conduct your search for a professional photographer is through the Internet. There are many hits for the search term “wedding photographer.” To avoid high transportation costs and making organisational matters overly complicated, it’s recommended to hire a photographer who is based in your local area. You should first start out by viewing each potential photographer’s website. A good photographer will have photo samples from previous weddings and venues as a reference for potential clients. Optimal platforms for photographers are Facebook, Instagram, and other social media websites. This is the perfect place to get a good idea of what the photographer is capable of. After viewing many photo samples of different photographers with their own styles, you should make a decision. Contact the photographer whose photos you liked best and set up a meeting. Comfortable relations with the photographer will be important later on your wedding day.
Another possible way to find your prospective photographer is to use the WPJA – the Wedding Photojournalist Association. This is the commodity board for photo journalists and wedding photographers worldwide. On the website you can filter professional and experienced wedding photographers by country and region. Besides contact info and references, the bride and groom can also find information about the photographer’s rates.
Also recommended is visiting wedding exhibitions. At these fairs wedding couples can find ideas for wedding venues and catering as well as photographers. A conversation with the photographer and a look at their sample photo albums can quickly give you an overview of their work.
Clear up important questions in a preliminary talk
For those that have already chosen a wedding photographer, you should first set up a meeting to clear up some details. The best place to have this meeting would be in the photographer’s photo studio. In the studio you can meet the photographer in their natural environment and make sure that the “chemistry” is there. You can ask questions about the equipment used, take sample photographs, and observe how the photographer edits photos. Once you have made sure that everything seems in order, you can move on to the business side of things.
The most important question to ask, of course, is whether the photographer is available on the day of the wedding celebration. If yes, you can move on to clearing up other important details. As an aid, we’ve compiled 14 questions you should ask during the meeting:
How long in advance should we book you? How long have you been a professional photographer? How many weddings have you already photographed? What kind of photography style do you use? What separates you from the other photographers? Other photographers are cheaper than you. Why? Can I give you a list of preferred motifs for the wedding photos? What information do you need from us before the wedding? Do you have a back-up photographer should you unexpectedly not be able to make it to the wedding? Do you charge extra for travel or extra time at the wedding? How many photos do we receive after the wedding and can we get the digital files? Will you edit the pictures? Do we have rights to the photos? How do you calculate the costs?
Below we’ll go into further detail about what things should be cleared up during the preliminary meeting with the photographer.
Different styles of wedding photography
Professional photographers will explain to bridal pairs the different photo styles of photographing a wedding. The selected style will have a big impact on the final costs. While portraits, for example, can be shot with little time needed in a photo studio, the photographer will be accompanying you the entire day during the wedding for this “photo shoot.” In order to ensure that you’re happy with the final results, it’s recommended to discuss the style and preferred motif(s) with your photographer beforehand.
To be able to photograph the wedding, the photographer accompanies the bridal pair the entire day, often from the preparations until late into the celebratory evening. The photographer works as a silent observer who documents the happenings and important moments of your special day. While shooting the wedding, the photographer will take both group as well as impromptu photos. A well-practiced photographer knows how to document special moments at your wedding without disturbing the wedding or reception.
This special art of capturing moments at a wedding lies with also capturing the emotions that are displayed at such an event. In this regard, the photographer will try to think outside of the box and use an aesthetic vision to accurately capture emotions that stem from spontaneous situations.
Portraits can be a part of the wedding album. They can also be taken before, during, or after the wedding. In a portrait shoot, you’ll be photographed individually in different poses, mostly from close up. The motif and location of this photoshoot will usually be discussed beforehand with the bride and groom.
Abnormal wedding photos
Taking abnormal and off-the-wall wedding photographs is becoming more and more popular. Whether it’s “trash the dress”, “selfies”, or “casual photo shoots”, there are no boundaries for your creativity. Taking their place next to the classic wedding portraits, these pictures will make your wedding album a bit more casual and give it an individual and unforgettable touch.
Ifolor Tip : make a collage of photo styles you like either online or offline. This will help your photographer get a general idea of what kind of style you would like them to use for your wedding.
Fees for services rendered
The price of your professional wedding photos depends on the time spent photographing the wedding, the style and number of photos, as well as the time needed to edit them. The following price models are the most common:
Starting price and additional costs per picture
The starting price for this price model seems relatively cheap in the beginning. You should keep in mind that the starting price only takes into account the needed time to photograph the wedding. Additional costs mostly stem from the development of the wedding photos. Every photo ordered costs extra. Since the ownership of the digital files of the photos is often not included, you usually have to order all desired prints from the photographer. This could turn out to be a large number if you consider all of your friends, family, and acquaintances. Since the range of duties of a photographer is relatively small, you should ask about all additional costs that can arise from the professional editing of your photos.
In the second model the photographer calculates a complete price. The range of services rendered in this model is more various and should be discussed with the photographer beforehand. You’ll usually receive edited digital copies of your favourite wedding photos included. You can then send these to friends and family. All services that are sure to arise are included in this “worry-free” package.
Ownership and rights of use
Very important points to consider when choosing your photographer are the ownership and rights of use of the pictures. The rights of the photographs you receive are dictated by the standard form contract of the photographer. The delivered photographs (digital or analogue) are usually copyrighted. The bride and groom receive life-long non-commercial rights of use, but no ownership. This is especially of importance should you plan to share your pictures with friends and family on social networks. For this reason, the bride and groom should discuss beforehand how they are allowed to use their photographs.
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