Wedding Photography

by The Wedding Professor

in Selecting Wedding Vendors,Wedding Photographers,Wedding Planning Advice

Choosing the ideal wedding photographer isn’t easy because the photographic style (e.g., traditional, photojournalistic, natural, artistically retouched) that appeals to one bride may not appeal to another. That means that there is no perfect formula you can follow to find a wedding photographer you’ll love. But you can make the process of finding your photog that much easier by learning a little bit about photography equipment, styles of shooting, and how photographers charge for their services.

None of those things will matter, however, if the wedding photographer you choose can’t find a balance between business and art. Photography is unlike any other service provided by wedding vendors because it is an art form rather than a science, and there are so many different ways to produce beautiful wedding photographs. For example, film photography and digital photography both have their charms. Traditional posed wedding photos are stunning when framed, but the photojournalistic pics of the reception will be so much more compelling in a few years.

That said, no matter what style of wedding photography matches your matrimonial personality, you have the right to expect certain things from your wedding photographer. Barring unforeseen emergencies, they need to show up – or an agreed upon substitute needs to show up on time, with equipment and back-up equipment, and frequently at least one assistant. Your wedding photographer needs to deliver proofs within an agreed upon period of weeks and then deliver your prints and albums within an agreed upon period of months. And that means proofs, prints, and albums that look like what you asked for, whether that was heavily retouched artistic images or natural, gritty true-to-life ones.

It may not be immediately obvious that there’s a lot riding on the line when it comes to your wedding photography, but think about it. Five, ten, or fifty years from now, the only lasting piece of your wedding (other than your memories) that you will possess will be the photographs taken and given to you by your photog. Thus, it is immensely important that you cover your contract bases when it comes to your wedding photography, even up to discussing the possibility of a free reshoot in the event that the photographer loses or inadvertently deletes or destroys your files or negatives before giving them to you along with your prints and albums.

This is one area where it is very important to get referrals – even satisfied clients may let slip that the photographer was kind of in the way during the ceremony or stealthily sat down to a leisurely meal during the buffet reception. And look beyond the usual portfolio of perfect images filled with gorgeous brides and grooms. Many wedding photographers will let you look at the online albums of previous clients (which are often public anyway) so you can see what a real wedding, with real people, looks like as shot by them. These will give you a much better idea of what your wedding photos will ultimately look like.

No amount of talent can compensate for a photographer who disregards your list of must-have shots, is distracted during important moments like the first dance and cake cutting, or worse, simply ignores the fact that they are shooting what is one of the most important events in the lives of multiple people and instead treats your wedding like a personal art project.

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