Choosing your Photographer

Posted on August 24, 2011

Since delving into the world of wedding planning, I have become somewhat obsessed with wedding photography. It is, after all, the one thing which will capture the results of all those hours of careful planning and is one of the few things which lasts beyond the day itself.

That being said, how do you go about choosing a photographer for your wedding? Today I hand over to Courtenay Hitchcock from Courtenay Photographic to give you his top tips. Having recently worked at a this Lorton House wedding with Courtenay and seen first hand not only how he operates on the day but also the stunning set of images he leaves his couples with, I can honestly say you are in good hands…

Choosing a photographer

1.  The Internet is your friend! Search for photographer/photography at your venue, and surrounding county – be wide in your search, photographers routinely work throughout more than one county with no extra travel fees.
2.  Referrals are All-Powerful. Speak to your venue, your friends, recent brides whose photographs you like – be sure that the person referring you has similar tastes to you though. What your great aunt thought was beautiful probably won’t be what you’re looking for.
3.  When looking at photographers’ websites, go straight to the gallery. If they do not quickly grab your attention, move on. A good contemporary photographer will have invested a lot of time in making sure his web gallery showcases the very best of his work – make sure it impresses you.
4.  Take your time to visit lots of websites, and bookmark around a dozen – you should now know exactly what style and look you love. You will find many of the sites will have a similar feel to their galleries. This is good – you have found your ‘look’.
5.  Many people soon come to realise what they
thought they wanted from their wedding photographs isn’t what speaks to them when they start looking. Write down what you love about the images – this will help formalise whether you are looking for photojournalism, traditional, posed, black and white, vibrant colour… Choosing your photographer is like choosing art for your wall. There’s no right answer, just what is right for YOU.
6.  Shortlist your favourite 3 or 4 and email them for an availability check. Then pick up the phone and SPEAK to them! A telephone conversation can tell you so much about someone, it’s important to begin communicating straight away. Make notes so that you don’t muddle them up with the next one you speak to.
7.  Arrange to meet your chosen few (pick your top 3 or 4 only), and do so in a short span of time. Keep up the notes on each.
8.  Compare the photographers Quality, Style and Personality – which one had the most images that made you smile, catch your breath or simply go oooh? Who were you most comfortable with talking to? Who made you laugh? You’ll be with them all day; you need to be happy having them around!
9.  Compare price/value – don’t make a decision on this alone, but you need to look at who is offering best value in ALL the above criteria.
10.  Speak with your favourite choice and ask any further questions, and be ready to book – if you dither, you may well lose your date to someone who is quicker off the mark.

Thank you Courtenay for these top tips.  Be sure to visit his gallery of images here.

Photo credit: Dorset Wedding Photographer – Courtenay Photographic Ltd

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