Wednesday, February 18, 2009

After picking who you are going to get married to, picking your photographer is your next big decision. Your wedding photographer will be capturing the memories from your day and immortalizing all of the other little details that you are going to spend so much time obsessing over. It can be intimidating, so where do you start?

My advise would be first to find some photographers in your area and take a look at their portfolios. If they have a website or blog this can be a great resource and it allows you to check them out without any pressure. When you are looking at the photos ask yourself if this is the kind of photos that you would like to show your friends, family, and kids in twenty years. If it doesn't give you that special "feeling", keep looking. If they do not have a website you will need to contact them to see their portfolio which brings us to our second step...

Once you find someone whose style you like, arrange to meet them in person. Be sure that you are meeting with the actual photographer who will be shooting your wedding and not a studio manager or assistant. Your relationship with the photographer can make or break your wedding day experience. You need someone who you get along with, trust, and feel comfortable with. If you hire someone because you like their style, but feel that as a person they are a jerk your pictures will show it. Personality is so important!

Once you have found someone whose style you admire and who has a good personality that you feel a connection to you should ask some questions to gauge how prepared and organized they will be. Do they have backup equipment? Insurance? A plan if they are hit by a car and can't shoot your wedding? Can they provide you with a shot list to help you figure out what pictures you want? Can they recommend other resources in the community for your venue, flowers, etc.?

Once you have gone through all of those qualifications. Look at their prices. What? Are you surprised that I left this until almost last? That is because if you shop on price first it is way too easy to talk yourself into going with someone whose style isn't exactly what you want, who you don't really get along with that well, and who you may not have total confidence in. There are no do-overs for your wedding day. If you do your research and pick someone that you really feel is the perfect choice for you, the money will resolve itself. Maybe you shift a little from your flowers, or cut back on the open bar. You can find a way to make it work for you. That said, before you start shopping for anything you should decide what your priorities are. I may be a little biased, but I am hoping that you agree that photography should be pretty high on the list...

Hope that this has been helpful and given you some things to think about. Check back again on Friday for our site of the week!

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