I open all my wedding posts with a big CONGRATS on your engagement! Assuming you’ve locked a date & a venue, you’re likely starting to round up your vendor list. Photography was very important to me. I spent hours going through vendors on various websites. I knew there were specific things I was looking for in their portfolio work. Given that we were going to have a blended wedding, I wanted to see a photographer who had experience shooting and editing a variety of skin tones. I’ve seen so many photos ruined by people who apply a standard preset, assuming all skin tones will respond the same. I am biracial, with yellow undertones to my skin. My partner is very light skin (he jokes that he’s translucent) with blue undertones. Half of my family has much darker skin than myself; I can only imagine the potential difficulty of editing photos with all of us standing next to my partner & his family.
When I finally found a few photographers I liked the work of, we set up zoom calls to introduce ourselves and get to know each other better. You want to make sure you vibe with the person who’s going to help create your forever memories. I’m really big on making sure the energy feels right but because we live across the country from where we’re getting married, we had to do the best we could through technology.
I know it can be a crazy time, so similarly to my wedding venue question list, I put together a comprehensive list of the questions to think about asking any photographer you’re considering working with. There are no rules so feel free to bounce around & pick the ones that apply to you and your partner!
If you’re interviewing multiple photographers, make sure you keep their answers organized. I put all of mine in a google sheets doc; the rows were the questions and each column dedicated to a different photographers answers. You can also put the answers in a notebook, a planning binder if you have one or the notes app on your phone.
- Is my wedding date available?
- Do you have liability insurance? What is covered?
- Do you have any wedding packages? What’s included?
- Are there any add-on options without upgrading the full package?
- Do you have a sample contract we can view?
- What is the deposit?
- What is the payment schedule? Or is there a payment plan?
- If my event lasts longer than expected, will you stay?
- What rate do you charge for overtime?
- Is there a minimum amount of coverage time?
- Should something happen to postpone or cancel our wedding, is the deposit refundable?
- How long after the wedding can we expect to receive our photos?
- How many final images should I expect to receive?
- Will you give me the digital negatives or unlimited downloads so I can make my own prints?
- If we hire you, when will we need to sign a contract by?
- How long have you been a wedding photographer?
- Are you a full-time photographer?
- How would you describe your shooting style?
- Are you more of a candid shooter or will there be styled/posed shots as well?
- Have you shot at our chosen venue? Are there any challenges or adjustments we should make to our photo expectations because of our venue?
- What are you favorite and least favorite parts of a wedding day?
- May I have a list of references or a link to reviews?
- What information do you need from me before the wedding day?
- What’s your communication style both before and on the wedding day?
- Do you often shoot weddings that have a similar size and style to the one we are planning?
- Can we see the full galleries of a few of your recent weddings?
- Do you offer retouching, color adjustment, or other corrective services? Are those included or an additional charge?
- Are you the photographer who will shoot my wedding? If so, will you have any assistants/second-shooters with you on that day?
- What about a backup plan if you are unable to shoot my wedding for some reason?
- Do you carry any backup equipment?
- Can we give you a list of specific shots we want in advance?
- How will you help us to relax and look our best on the wedding day?
- What if we have guests that aren’t comfortable in front of a camera?
- Are you photographing other events on the same day as mine?
- Can we order prints or albums directly from you?
- Will you be posting about our wedding on your website and social media? Will you be submitting our photos to magazines or blogs?
- What time should we expect you to arrive onsite? Would you be able to take any off-site photos before the ceremony starts?
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