15 Questions Brides Want to Know About Wedding Photography #2
One of the interesting parts of being a professional in a field for a while is you get requests from the media for comment on events, or topics relevant to that field. Recently I was asked to answer some questions for an upcoming book geared towards future brides.
I was one of several professionals who were asked questions specifically for wedding photography, so I don’t think I’ll be spoiling anything by revealing my answers, since I’m sure they’ll use others for some of the 15 answers, plus I wasn’t asked anything about catering, or how to preform a traditional religious ceremony.
I’ll be sure to post up link when the book is published, but for now I’ll be spreading the questions and my answers (plus maybe a little extra) out over the next 15 days.
What are the pros and cons of hiring two wedding photographers to take pictures at a wedding, as compared to only having one photographer taking Pictures?
First, don’t hire photographers from 2 separate companies. Chances are they will only be stepping on each others toes to get the same shot and it might actually cost you more. The pros are, if done correctly, you’ll have more images of the groom and guests, as well as multiple angles for key moments like the kiss, the bride entering the ceremony, garter & bouquet tosses and so on. If you are concerned about your main photographer getting sick, or worse, dying on your wedding day, a second photographer is an automatic backup.
The cons are; all to often a second photographer isn’t a second photographer and is really just an assistant, or apprentice learning the ropes so they can shoot weddings on their own for the studio in a year or two. Especially when you’re dealing with large studios who have multiple photographers, make sure you get to see the first & second photographer’s portfolio before you commit to a contract. Photography is an art, and talent and style differ greatly from photographer.
Coming up tomorrow
What types of wedding packages do photographers typically offer?
If you think about how your wedding day will unfold, you’ll realize that out of all the people you’ll be spending time with, almost no one, including your soon to be spouse, will be with you more than the photographer.
Often when I’m contacted by a couple about my services, I often hear about how they like my photos, but later I’ve been told a big reason why a couple chose me, is that during our face to face meeting I made them feel very comfortable.
This is something that took me a year or two to realize, that it was part of the services I had to offer and not just my ability to dress well & smile.
In the past I’ve talked about important things to think about when choosing your location, ways to make sure your photographer has a the opportunity to get good photos and ways to get a good photographer if you’re on a tight budget, but I’ve never actually talked about getting a photographer you’d like.
While I can’t tell you what you should personally like in a photographer, I can tell you that no matter how good the portfolio, package prices or options offered, you should actually like the photographer you’ll be working with as much as you like their products.
A few good examples of when having a likable photographer is nice are;
-when the bride and bridal party are getting dressed & ready
-in the extra small waiting rooms before the ceremony
-those intimate moments when the couple are alone, away from everybody after the ceremony
-and interacting with your guests
Still not quite sure what to look for in a photographer? Here are some good starting points.
1. Do they sound like they enjoy shooting weddings, or is this just a 9-5?
Wedding photography is a job, but while the responsibility of taking photos on one of the greatest days of a couples life is intense, if they’re not into it, it will show up in the photos as well as possibly being disruptive the day of.
2. Do they talk about bad weddings & bridezillas more than happy brides & beautiful ceremonies?
I’ll admit I’ve talked at length before about wedding mishaps and bridezillas, but I usually try to focus it on how a future couple can avoid pitfalls, as opposed to just an all out rant. Stories about how to make your wedding better are often a sign a photographer cares about your experience as much as your business.
3. Do you actually get to meet them and are they guaranteed to be your photographer?
Studios often have a sales person you meet with to discus packages, albums & prints. While you might have a choice based on portfolio, meeting the photographer is often a day of the ceremony occasion. Also, be sure to ask up front what your photographer’s switching policies are? Even small independent photographers have been know to double book a date and substitute a second photographer or assistant photographer in place of themselves.
Above all, follow your gut and not your wallet. If you get a recommendation for a photographer, ask your friends about their personality as well as their professionalism.