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How Do I Choose My Wedding Photographer?

The vendor that we almost always recommend booking first, (After the venue of course! You need your venue to secure your date - see our blog on Questions to Ask Your Venue) is your photographer. Mostly because there’s only one of them who usually can produce their work - and if they’re booked that day you’re out of luck. Just because it’s the first vendor we recommend to book doesn’t mean that you shouldn't spend time vetting them and doing your due diligence to make sure you get a top notch Orlando wedding photographer that fits your budget and style. Your photographer is the person who is going to capture your memories for one of the most important days of your life. These are the photos that will line the halls of your home (and your mother’s home, and probably even your grandmother’s home) and most definitely the photos that will be spamming your friends on IG for at least a couple of days (and let’s be honest, every year on your anniversary. There’s no escaping them, IG followers!!)

We are here to help make sure you know all the questions to ask, so read on for all the knowledge and let’s get you the wedding photographer of your dreams!

  • Always try to get the whole picture (get it? But really…) Photographers, will understandably choose to showcase their best and favorite work on their website and socials, but this does not mean their style does not vary or have options from the photos that captured your eye. Consider asking your potential photographer for access to a full wedding album that they’ve done. This gives you a full understanding of their body of work and if it will fit with your vision.

  • Personality is so important!! You want someone who will keep you laughing, who you’re not afraid to make-out with your fiancé in front of, and someone who is fast and efficient when dealing with large families and larger personalities. Follow your potential photog on Instagram, meet with them in person before booking, or at least have an extensive phone call with them. Make sure you vibe!

  • You found your dream photographer! Should you get them booked right away? If you know, you know! But if you are considering other options, before you sign that dotted line consider getting multiple quotes from a few photographers that match your desired style. View each proposal with an objective eye and compare prices, as well as what comes in each package. Are the allotted hours enough for them to capture all the way from getting ready to send off? Is an engagement shoot included? (AMAZING for getting to know your photographer. Check out some helpful engagement shoot tips here) Does the package come with a second shooter? If you’re not specifically hiring a videographer, does your photographer’s second shooter do minimal video shooting?

  • We love suggesting to invite your photographer to your rehearsal or venue walk through. They aren’t always able to make these extra visits, (or may already be familiar with the venue) but if they can it gives the photographer a chance to scope out the venue for picture perfect photogenic moments. It also allows another opportunity for you and your fiance to get to know them so that you can be relaxed on wedding day.

  • Be sure to check on the rights for your photos. Will you need to purchase them to use without watermarks? Do you only get a certain set of photos with your package or do you get access to all the unedited shots? Will additional photos be an extra cost?

  • Don’t let this next one be a determining factor but just something to note - what is the realistic turn around time for a full gallery? Sneak peeks? Know the timeline you’re getting into so that the anticipation can kill you less. We know it’s not easy waiting on your photos but at least you’ll have a realistic guestimate!

  • How many shooters come with your package? Some photographers shoot alone, others shoot with an assistant. Some photographers outsource the shooting to associate photographers and just do the editing. Asking if who you are meeting with is going to be the one shooting the day-of is super important. The number of shooters is dependent on the package booked, not the photographer’s discretion. Another thing to note is who is editing - is there one editor or multiple editors. Ultimately the style you fell in love with comes down to the editing, so knowing who is the wizard behind the curtain is important!

BONUS TIP - Let’s compare and contrast!

  • Compare the following:

    • How many hours? Can you add extra, and at what cost?

    • Do they include video? (And if not will they work with a videographer outside of their company or recommendations?)

    • Do any additional shoots come in your package? (e.g. engagement shoots, after marriage shoots, trash the dress shoot)

    • Do they offer any other services? (video, design work, drone shots)

    • Who edits the photos vs who shoots them.

  • PRO TIP BY SYD CREWMATE, MONICA: “For my fellow melanin-blessed families: On a personal note, we work very hard on our tan year-round (some of us are more successful than others…). If you are in this group, make sure you pick a photographer who showcases darker skin tones in natural light, as opposed to some photographers who are more versed in featuring predominantly lighter skin tones. The latter may accidentally wash out your amazing complexion if they approach editing the same for all skin types. You won’t regret it when you look flawless looking back at your photos!”

However you love your photos - light and airy, dark and moody, dramatic AF - your photos will be a physical representation of your wedding day memories and will last you a lifetime. Find someone who you’ll be comfortable sharing your most intimate moments with and who will capture those sacred emotions on film.

Need help finding the perfect photographer? Let us tell you about some of our favorite humans attached to cameras that we love to work with!

Comment below or slide into our DM’s here! We can’t wait to help!

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