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Picking the Right Wedding Photographer

Selecting the Right Wedding Photographer

Now that we're in full wedding planning mania, you've already started on your wedding website, and sorted out your online wedding registry, so hopefully you still have enough vigor left in you to start your search for your wedding photographer! Since this task is one of the most important for your big day (next to the dress of course), you'll want to put some serious thought and effort into choosing the right photographer to capture your wedding. If you have no idea where to start, I can give you some tips on how to hit the ground running.

Film or Digital?
Although digital photography might be something you are leaning towards (since you all are so tech savvy!), there are some factors to consider for both. The rich depth and grain of film photography is something unique that you can only get with film. Sure, your digital photographer can fiddle around with Photoshop for each of your photos to try and bring out those same qualities, but it's just not the same. Besides, I'm sure that would be a ton of OT for the poor guy, and who knows how high that would bring the cost of the service! But digital photography also has its benefits. To see what they are,

When shooting with digital cameras, for each image captured, you have instant feedback. You can adjust the settings, angles, and light right away to make sure you get just the right pic. . . and you won't be disappointed if a roll of film turns out crappy when you get it back. Plus, there is essentially no limit to how many photos can be taken. Also, if you are interested in getting your pics onto a disk, website, coffee table book or want to turn them into an awesome slideshow, digital is the simplest and easiest way to do it.

What style?
There are some photographers that specialize in portraits, and some in wedding photojournalism. Wedding photojournalism is something that has become more popular in the past decade due to its ability to capture candid moments that really bring the photos to life.

After you make those essential decisions, it's time to pick a few photographers and meet with them. Here are some important questions to keep in mind when interviewing your selections:

  • Ask if they are the ones who will be photographing your wedding, and if the samples you are viewing are from their portfolio. If not, ask to meet the photographer that will be shooting your wedding and check out samples from their past events.
  • What is included in the packages, and what is the breakdown of costs. Ask if there is a way to customize a package to fit your needs and ideal budget.
  • Will an assistant be used? If so, is that an added fee?
  • What is the estimated time frame for finished photos?
  • Are CD's, proofs, and photo albums an added cost?
  • How many rolls of film do they typically use, and what is the cost per roll?

Hopefully these tips can get you on your way to choosing the perfect photographer for your big day! Do you have any tips to share? Leave them in the comments below! Plus, check out more of our wedding coverage on I Do Sugar.


Join The Conversation
avienndha avienndha 9 years
My photographer rocked, and she was funny which made us all laugh. Major bonus. She shot in all digital, which were SUPER high quality and detailed, plus we got a ton of pics (like 500) which was awesome too. Definitely a plus to digital! Plus she shoots amazing candids and group shots. She's local to the NY, CT, NJ area. I'll post some shots to my profile if you guys want to peek : )
melizzle melizzle 9 years
If you can get someone you know to do the photography, it will work out MUCH better. You'll get exactly what you want for a much better price.
geekinheels geekinheels 9 years
Don't forget the most important tip: make sure you get along with your photographer! Your photographer will most likely be spending the most amount of time with you on your wedding day (aside from your fiance) so you need someone who makes you feel comfortable. I've met some very talented and well-respected photographers but we decided to go with a lesser known photographer because he made us feel 100% at ease. My fiance and I are usually such spazzes in front of the camera but our photographer really brought out something in us and we came out with some WONDERFUL pictures.
Liembo Liembo 9 years
My wife and I opted for a mix of the classic and photojournalist style when preserving our vow renewal ceremony. The photographer shot digital and was able to create images that I don't believe would be possible when limited to film. Digital gives the ability to switch ISO instantly for shots that may require it, without changing rolls or carrying multiple bodies loaded with different films. His post-processing work was amazing and he blew us away with some of the results. But always do your research and ask for samples! The photojournalist style captures the moment almost in a way that a video would, rather than the stuffy photos where you line up people and say "cheese". Who wants to go back and look at those?
lizadilly lizadilly 9 years
Nowadays I don't think you even need a photographer as much as you used to, since everyone brings a digi camera and you can just start a Flickr pool to yoink their shots. I say hire someone to do some professional portraits and then get your candids from your friends.
tweet-hotpants tweet-hotpants 9 years
my wedding photographer was brilliant!! highly recommend her to anyone getting married in new england.
Emmiekitten Emmiekitten 9 years
I cannot recommend enough looking at student photographers! We are just as well trained as the professionals(if not more) and are willing to take a hell of a lot less! If you are a total perfectionist then some one young and relatively inexperienced may not be the best bet, but if you are looking for some unique photographs of the big day, or if you are on a budget, and you don't mind one or two off shots then I would defiantly look into it. I know that if I was hired I would go all out to impress. Contacts and happy customers are important to those working freelance, especially when just starting a career.
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