When it comes to hiring the perfect photographer for your wedding – how do you decide? There are so many talented photographers out there, each with their own unique shooting style and pricing structure. Below are a few tips to help you choose the perfect photographer for your wedding.
When going over a photographer’s shooting style, you’ll want to establish whether they capture images using a candid, photojounalistic style or if they plan out a specific story for the shoot ahead of time.
Neither style is inherently better. Candids are an integral part of the wedding package for any photographer, but some prioritize them more highly than others. There’s something magical about a perfect candid shot that tells you a story in one still frame. I love an emotional black and white image that dissolves all distractions of color and backdrop, allowing you to live in that one captured moment. The drawback of hiring a purely photojounalistic photographer is that they only capture what’s already there; no art is put into crafting that perfect moment.
In contrast, some photographers are a little more meticulous in their approach. A wedding day can easily become a little chaotic; and while that’s not always bad, it can be distracting. Having a photographer that helps you construct and adhere to a storyline can be helpful in maintaining some order. This may include planning a first look, finding the ideal spot for the couple’s creative portraits, or simply ensuring that everything is in place to capture incredible shots.
A well harmonized story will have aspects of both styles; candid shots throughout the day and staged creative portraits to supplement.
Editing styles range from light and airy on one end of the spectrum, to dark and moody on the other. Light and airy photography is trending right now and can be breathtaking but only if done skillfully. For example, in bridal portraits, all of the intricate lace details that made her fall in love with the dress may be missing because the image is too bright. The same goes for the sky –images that are overly bright leave a tell-tale “white sky” look.
On the other end of the spectrum is the dark and moody style. In these images, you start to miss out on detail in the darker areas such as a black suit or brown hair. Most importantly, you can easily lose the sparkle in the eyes. A photograph is about connecting with the people who star in it. If the eyes are dull and lack animation, the image starts to appear lifeless and you lose a lot of the emotion in the image.
Timeless photography –which avoids trendy extremes – reaches that sweet spot in the middle of the spectrum. A well exposed image will maintain the color in the sky and detail in the dress, while retaining enough light to fill the eyes and bring the image to life. Ultimately, there are no hard and fast rules; choose a photographer that fits your style and the way you want your day to be remembered!
Look at Complete Weddings
When choosing your wedding photographer, don’t leave anything to chance! Any photographer can easily create a beautiful website with only a handful of weddings under their belt. The rest of their portfolio could be filled with styled shoots, which are mock wedding collaborations crafted between several vendors in order to generate content or introduce new styles for publication. There’s nothing wrong with styled shoots – most photographers do them. The issue arises when a photographer has built the bulk of their portfolio with these “no pressure” collaborations. On a wedding day, there are no “do overs” and often, a photographer has only minutes to get organized and capture the perfect shot. That’s not a problem you face when shooting styled sets for magazines and working with models.
Make sure you ask to see 3-4 complete weddings. This request should not be a problem for any full-time professional photographer. When looking through the shots, observe the consistency of the photography throughout the day. You may notice that some photographers really shine during certain portions of the day and otherwise experience a bit of a slump. When you find a photographer that can deliver consistent results throughout the entire day for multiple weddings, you can rest assured that your day will be no exception.
Here are a couple of weddings to look through. To see more, contact our studio for a consultation.
Click here to see Jena & Jon’s wedding at River Landing
Click here to see Grace & Will’s wedding at St. Mary’s Chapel
Meet in Person
This is one of the most important steps to consider when hiring a wedding photographer. Meet them in person and get to know their personality! Your photographer is the vendor you will spend the most time with on your wedding day, from the time you start getting ready until you leave happily wed at the end of the night. “Clicking” with your photographer is so important to let your true personality shine in the shots.
When you meet with a photographer in person, you can also check out all the different wedding albums and printed products they offer. This will clue you in to whether your photographer can deliver the final product of your dreams!
I hope this gives you a few ideas for choosing the right photographer for your big day. If you’re interested in meeting with us, I’d love to learn more about your vision and see how we at indigosilver can help. Give us call at 910-399-6790 or email us at [email protected]
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