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Eleven Tips for Choosing Your Wedding Photographer               printer directions
 
    1. Your Photographer - Who will be photographing your wedding?
         Make sure the work you view was created by the person who will actually be photographing your wedding. Sad to say, it is not uncommon for a couple to view the work of one photographer only to have a subcontracted photographer show up the day of the wedding. Will they bring an assistant?

    2. Experience Level - Does this individual have experience in photographing weddings?
         How many weddings has your photographer photographed? Photographing a wedding is not the same as photographing a sports team, shooting editorial photographs for the local paper or doing wildlife photography! If the individual is new to the industry, find out if they have apprenticed with other wedding photographers to get the feel for photographing an actual wedding. Also find out what education and training the photographer has received. When was the last course or seminar they attended? Does this individual strive to stay up with current trends in the industry? Ask to see a complete wedding of their work. Do you want to trust your once in a lifetime event to a newcomer?

    3. Style - Find a style that appeals to you.
         Style will differ widely from photographer to photographer. This is strictly a matter of your preference, so look around at a lot of different work. As you look through bridal magazines you will notice that you are drawn to certain images. Is this what you want your wedding portraits to look like? Keep a file folder of pictures you like and don’t hesitate to show these to a prospective photographer. Do they have similar examples they can show you? Do you like the degree of posing, or not posing, that you see in their work?

    4. Chemistry - Find a photographer you can work with.
         There is a lot to be said for “chemistry” between the bride and groom and any professional they hire for their wedding. This is the most important day of your life and one that can tend to be hectic. You want ALL the professionals on your team to be easy for you to work with as well as being able to work well with each other.

    5. Image - Be aware of the image that will be projected by your photographer.
         Ask the photographer how he/she intends to dress for your wedding. Does this person come across as a professional? Coupled with the“ chemistry” mentioned above, can you picture this individual photographing your wedding and your family and friends? Will you feel that you made a wise decision when you hired this individual?

    6. Professional Associations - Is your photographer a member of any professional associations?
         Are they Certified? Do they have any professional degrees? Being a member of a Professional photographic association does not necessarily guarantee excellence, but it does indicate that the photographer has the desire and the opportunity to participate in seminars and educational programs on the cutting edge in the field. In addition, professional organizations provide a support network of other professionals who share ideas and services for the betterment of all of their clients.

    7. Equipment - What type equipment does your photographer use?
         Do they use Medium format, 35mm, and/or digital? Are you happy with the quality of the examples that you see? Does the photographer have backup equipment that they will bring to your wedding? This is very important! If they have only one camera and it gets knocked over at your wedding, what happens?

    8. Price Range - Find a price range that you are comfortable with.
         There is a wide range of pricing available for wedding photography. The old adage says, “You get what you pay for”! This is SO true in the photographic industry. Choosing your wedding photographer should not be based on price alone. Weigh all factors in the balance and make an informed, knowledgeable decision that will benefit you in the end.

    9. Offering - Know ahead of time what goods/services you will receive for the price being quoted to you.
         Will you be receiving previews and/or viewing images online? Is there an album included? Do you need to assemble it yourself or is it already put together? How many hours of coverage are included? Is there an extra charge for travel? If a package doesn’t sound like exactly what you need, can it be changed and is there a cost to change it? Are the negatives/digital files available? Professionals usually want to maintain negatives and digital files to insure quality reproductions. After all, their name will be associated with them. Professionals put quality first.

    10. Delivery - Ask what the time frame is for delivery of your wedding photographs.
         How soon after the wedding will you be able to see your images? How long will it take before you have possession of your finished wedding album? How much time is allowed to turn around reprint orders?

    11. The Contract - Do you understand the contract?
         Is it fair? Is everything spelled out? What about retainers and payments? Make sure that you have read it ALL and have no doubts before signing.

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