Choosing a wedding photographer is bloody important and can be a challenge, to help here are THE five big questions we reckon you have to ask.
The first two are about style and quality, the last three, experience:
- Is the quality and style consistent or just “trendy”?
- Does the style suit our personality?
- Have they shot at my venue?
- Have they shot a wedding like mine?
- Do I like them (or are they self important douchebags)?
To find the answers, do your homework. Have a good look through their work, and not just a little bit, but heaps of it (if there isn’t heaps of it on show, look elsewhere). Lets get started…
Style and Quality
It’s super important to choose a photography and cinematography style that you really love, and quality standard you admire as these are the things that you’ll be looking at for years to come, and pass down to your children and grandchildren! Ask these two questions:
QUESTION 1. Is the quality of their photography/cinematography consistently good?
As you do, keep and eye out for consistency, and you will notice that editing has a big effect on the final product – make sure the style is natural and timeless, not super filtered and insta-fake. Some photographs are over-edited to keep up with fads and trends, and after a few years they might appear really outdated.
QUESTION 2. Does the photographer’s/cinematographer’s style suit your personality?
This is a big one. If it’s not you, you’ll get the vibe so listen to it. We like creative, fun and candid, emotional and really you images. Some people like staged and formal, careful and planned. If you have two photographers or cinematographers at your wedding, it can be important to ask whether the quality of their work is consistent?
Experience is priceless. Your photographer needs to see what will happen before it does, anticipate moments, be able to think on the spot, cope with any lighting situation and be able to keep you on schedule on the big day!
It takes a lot of time and many weddings for a photographer or cinematographer to be truly comfortable and be able to deal with any situation. The important questions are:
QUESTION 3. Have you ever shot a wedding at the venue I have chosen?
Knowledge of the venue is a bonus, but not essential. Every person, couple and wedding is unique, and circumstances different. A great photographer approaches weddings with a fresh mindset, not a “copy and paste from last time” attitude.
But if they’ve done a wedding at your venue it can help anticipate lighting and the little traps and advantages a location offers. Ask your photographer and cinematographer if they know the place, and have ideas about shooting there? Creative details like this can help you make a final call on who to go with.
QUESTION 4. Have you ever shot a wedding like mine?
Cultural sensitivity is a real deal breaker. Does your wedding have unique traditions and practices the photographer and cinematographer must know and respect?
If your photographer hasn’t shot a wedding like yours, make sure you explain what to expect, and when to expect things before you decide whether they are a good fit.
It helps if a photographer has shot a wedding like yours, but an experienced wedding photographer or cinematographer will thrive in a new situation! We’ve photographed the weddings of couples from a diverse range of cultural backgrounds, and absolutely loved the experience.
QUESTION 5. Do you like the photographer/cinematographer?
You’re going to be spending a lot of time with your photographer and cinematographer, they won’t just be with you for the entire day of your wedding, but you’ll also be seeing them and chatting with them in the lead up, as well as afterwards. We love to make friends with our brides and grooms and we want you to feel like you spent the day with a mate rather than with annoying and demanding know-alls.
That’s why we always do a pre-wedding shoot, and make an open offer to our couples to have a coffee or a drink and a chat about concerns or questions they might have. It’s all about building trust, and making sure you don’t have strangers at your big day.