Updated for 2021
tl;dr: you are in your wedding planning process looking for a photographer. After you decided on your style, there are still too many out there and you don’t know what to look for. Below are six points to consider when hiring your wedding photographer.
1. Request a full gallery of the real wedding day
This one is key. Be sure that the images you see are on their social profiles are not just set-up shoot images. You’ll want to request a REAL wedding gallery from your chosen photographer. The gallery will give you a good indication of what your photographer’s style will be like as well as how they deal with differences in different light and location (e.g. harsh light and indoor Vs. outdoor).
2. Do they have a wedding photography contract?
Ask your wedding photographer for a contract. The contract will provide both parties with a sense of protection as well as a realistic view of responsibilities, expectations as well as outlining all the important information.
3. What’s their delivery speed?
After your big day, the last thing you want to do is chase your photographer for the wedding photos if they’re late. During the wedding season, there could be delays if the photographer has several weddings to edit. It’s best to ask your photographer for a timeframe of when they’ll be delivering your photos. Some photographers offer a premium for quicker delivery if you want a fast turnaround.
4. What’s the back-up plan?
Sometimes unfortunate things happen and your photographer calls to say he/she is unable to make it to the wedding. During your consultation with the photographer, ask them what their plan B is in that scenario. Usually, the photographer can give you a few photographers who can cover them and has a similar style to their work. Cancellations rarely happen but it’s good to know they’ve got someone to cover should the situation call for it.
5. Is there a second shooter?
The benefit of having a second shooter present at your wedding means that they’ll be able to capture moments at different times and different angles. Some photographers work alone; some work as a team. For those that work alone, typically there’s an additional charge for a second shooter. In a team, the cost of the second shooter is generally already included in the package price. It’s best to confirm either way.
6. Do they do a back-up on files?
I cannot stress how important this is. What happens if one camera is faulty? What if the memory card is damaged? A professional photographer should have more than one back-up. Personally, I shoot with 2 cameras and each camera records into 2 different memory cards every time I click the shutter. When I’m back in my office, the card contents get downloaded onto local drives as well as to the cloud.
So here it is, 6 questions to ask your wedding photographer. I hope these questions help you the next time you meet your photographer. If you are here because you are looking for a photographer, I would love to chat with you! Feel free to drop me a message.