After more than 15 years in business, here are 8 important questions I think you should ask a wedding photographer.
1. What is your style and how do you approach the wedding day? Every photographer has their own style. A style can be natural or edgy, real or imaginary, traditional or photojournalistic, and even fun or serious. Ask photographers to explain their styles so you can find the one that resonates with you. It can be helpful to ask a photographer to walk you through a typical wedding day. I like to think of the wedding as a play with different acts; getting ready, first look, ceremony, reception, etc. After the wedding, the couples album design just falls into place like the chapters of a storybook.
2. Who are your second photographers? How long have you been working with them? Are they professionals? The second shooters I work with are all competent professionals who also shoot weddings on their own. Also, they are able to cover for me should I get sick. Your photographer should have a list of equally competent professionals, who have each other’s backs in case of sickness or an emergency.
3. Do we need any special permits? The City of Boulder Open Space requires a permit to photograph professionally on its lands. It would be a real dissappointment to arrive at your dream location with your wedding party only to be shut down and receive a ticket.
4. Are you open to incorporating some of our creative ideas? Your photographer should be open and flexible to your ideas. I’ve learned so many new things from creative brides, who share images with me on Pinterest before their wedding.
5. Do you shoot RAW files or jpeg files? Your photographer should be shooting RAW files. This allows him/her to adjust each one for the correct exposure and color on their computers after the shoot. Even the best shooters’ files still need a little adjusting.
6. How many weddings do you shoot a year? Are you going to be one of ten clients or one of forty? If you’re one of forty, does the photographer have the staff to manage it? Otherwise, you may be waiting months for your images. Does he/she shoot more than one a day?
7. Do you include a wedding album? Wedding albums are important for reliving your event and last a life time. Your photographer has a front row seat to everything so he/she is the best person to design the story. Be sure to ask how many revisons are included. A professional album design, retouching, and printing is the best way to show and preserve your wedding images. And let’s be honest, are you really going to do it yourself?
8. Who edits the images? Believe it or not, many photographers have a service that edits the images for them. Even high end photographers charging $10,000 a wedding do this. How a wedding is edited can change the overall look and feel of the images. An editor in another state or country can’t know about all the subtle intricacies that will happen on your wedding day. Your photographer will have a front row seat to everything, and how it is edited is almost as important as how it is shot.