December 5, 2019 / Preparing for Your Wedding Day
How to Get the Wedding Photographer of Your Dreams
I am going to start off my next series of ‘Preparing for your Wedding Day: Secrets of a Luxury Wedding Photographer’ by helping you get to the photographer of your dreams. There are literally millions of photographers that exist all over the world. Which one is your photographer? I will break it down into 6 simple steps.
1. Do you like the photographer’s work? Make sure that the images you are looking at are how you are envisioning your day. Remember that photographers are artists and documentarians. A wedding day is a story – look at a complete wedding. Do you like how they are consistently telling the story of their couples from getting ready to reception? Do you like how the pictures are edited?
2. Do you like the photographer and actually get along with them? This is possibly the most important step. I schedule an initial call, Skype or meeting with each client. I do not take every client that wants me to photograph them. Scheduling a talk helps me vet my clients to make sure we are compatible and I can accurately tell the story of their day. Make sure you actually like their personality and get along with them. A wedding day is long and you spend most of it with the photographer and vis versa. I want clients that actually are excited for me to photograph them, and I want to do be able to go above and beyond for people that I am invested in and want to work with.
3. Does the photographer understand your needs and add/expound upon your vision? When I talk to my clients in the initial consult, I like to understand what is most important to the couple, their excitements, dreams, vision, and sometimes fears. I want to get a clear understanding of what you are wanting and how I can add to it.
4. Can you afford the photographer? There is no ‘one price fits all’ photographer. That being said, if you want a photographer, there is usually a way to work with them. I have had clients save up for months to put a deposit down and I have clients who pay in full. Payment plans are always an option. Look at it as an investment and remember: what you pay for is what you get. What type of fine art albums and prints do they offer? How many years of experience do they have? All of this plays into the pricing structure of a photographer. As for me, I love art, and am offering the best albums and prints that I could possibly find in the industry, combined with 15 years of experience which have landed me at my pricing structure today.
5. Does the photographer offer services you want and products that show your day in a beautiful lasting format? PLEASE PLEASE start thinking of how you want your images displayed. It drives me crazy when I hear about couples leaving gorgeous images on a drive or cloud somewhere. What if the device or cloud your images were on gets deleted? I will hold your images for a year for you, but after that you are responsible for the care of them. That is why showcasing and printing your images is so important. I offer amazing high end albums as well as museum quality prints. I want to make sure when you display your wedding day that it is perfection and a beautiful memory that will last and stand the test of time.
6.Do you trust them? Trust is huge. I want my clients to be thinking about the moment they are in, each other, their families – having full faith that I am consistently capturing the moments of the day. I do not need a pinterest board, I am an artist focused on creating unique content for you and will not copy another photographer. If opportunities arise that I want to get a portrait of, beautiful light expresses itself, or an idea that I would like to expound upon appears – I want the trust from my clients that I have their best intentions at heart.
Once you have found the photographer of your dreams, take action. Most photographers including myself only hold a date once you inquire for 24-48 hours. This means that once that time period is over, they will release the date and it is fair game for other couples. It is important to note that some photographers take on a limited number of couples a year and may stop booking once they hit their goal for the year. If this happens to you, sometimes writing a letter to the photographer will change their mind. To hold a photographer including myself for a date, a deposit is required and a signed contract.
So to summarize, make sure you like the photographer and that you see eye to eye with them. Trust that they get you, and be a fan of their work. Keep it simple. Read reviews from past clients and make sure you are going with your gut and that you are stress free with your decision.