From the outside looking in as an Oregon Wedding Photographer, it may seem like a simple choice when it comes to choosing your wedding photographer. Me, duh?!?! Just kidding. However, that’s just not the case, especially with so many insanely talented wedding photographers out there. When it comes to choosing a wedding photographer, how do you know what to look for? How do you know if you’ve made the right choice? Luckily, over the years as an Oregon Wedding Photographer, I have been able to narrow down some of the best questions for newly engaged couples to ask when hiring a wedding photographer. These questions will help give you a better sense of who you should hire and what to look out for. Essentially making sure that you’re hiring the wedding photographer of your DREAMS.
One of the most important questions to ask your future wedding photographer is how they would describe their editing style. As a couple in search of your perfect wedding photographer, editing style will play a huge role in your decision. In fact, it will be one of the main reasons that you choose your wedding photographer in the first place. A wedding photographer’s editing style is essentially like their “signature”. A unique formula curated specifically for them that gives their photos the specific look that you fell in love with.
When searching for an Oregon Wedding Photographer or just a wedding photographer in general, keep in mind their editing style. Do you enjoy their editing style? Can you envision your wedding in that specific style? If the answer is yes, then that’s a good sign that they may be “the one”. If not, then you may need to keep looking. Keep in mind that wedding photographers *do not* change their editing style at your request. So you must love their editing prior to inquiring and chatting with them!
Another big component in hiring a wedding photographer is their experience. While a wedding photographer’s experience does not equate to their level of talent. It may help you in making your decision. Typically, a wedding photographer will charge more for their experience and expertise. Although, this isn’t the case for every wedding photographer. Your future wedding photographer should have no problem sharing with you their level of experience working in the wedding industry. If they seem to beat around the bush and not directly answer your question, this could be a possible red flag.
If you feel more comfortable working with a wedding photographer with more experience in the wedding industry, please be vocal about this. You want to make sure that you are feeling 100% comfortable in your investment with a wedding photographer and their expertise. Again, a wedding photographer’s experience does not equal their level of talent. There are plenty of wedding photographers who have not had years of experience working in the industry. However, upon looking at their work you may feel they are qualified to shoot your wedding. At the end of the day, the choice is completely up to you and what you feel comfortable with.
It should be no problem to ask your future wedding photographer for examples of full wedding galleries. While their website and socials may showcase as a portfolio and that may be enough for you. Don’t be afraid to ask for more examples. Asking for some full wedding galleries not only gives you a taste of what your wedding gallery may look like but can give you an idea of what full wedding day coverage may look like. It’s also helpful to see if your wedding photographer has photographed a wedding at your specific venue to gauge lighting, angles, photo locations, etc.
If your potential wedding photographer seems to beat around the bush, refuses to share full wedding galleries, or just completely ignores your request, this may not be a good sign. A reputable wedding photographer will have no issue sharing with you their previous work or something comparable.
Having a solid backup plan for your photos will be a make or break for you, I can assure you. Let’s break it down for a sec, okay? Your wedding day happens only once. Meaning that the memories and events from that special day can’t be replicated. Meaning your wedding photographer should have a solid backup system to ensure that your photos stay safe and secure no matter what.
Typically a good rule of thumb when choosing a wedding photographer is to make sure that they have a camera with dual SD card slots. Having two SD cards means that your photos are getting copied over to the second SD card while shooting. Thus ensuring that there’s always a backup plan just in case the first set of images on the SD card gets corrupted. Don’t we just loveeeee technology?
This kind of goes hand in hand but obviously when choosing a wedding photographer you need to chat about pricing. No matter what, your wedding budget will have an influence in whether or not you can afford your wedding photographer. Ideally you would choose a wedding photographer who is within your budget. Maybe even a little bit over if they are worth it for you. If that’s the case, making sure you discuss the different packages that your future wedding photographer offers is going to be UBER important.
You also want to make sure that before you hire your wedding photographer that you discuss if they offer payment plans. Since a wedding photographer can be a huge investment, most wedding photographers offer payment plans to best accommodate our couples. Wedding photographers will typically have a non-refundable retainer to book your date. Then the rest of the balance can be split into different payment plans. The different types of payment plans will be different per photographer. So make sure you discuss this before signing with your future wedding photographer.
One of the biggest questions as an Oregon Wedding Photographer, or just wedding photographers in general, get is if we offer photoshopping. Some wedding photographers may offer light photoshopping. Typically though, this is an additional add-on service or something they completely *don’t* offer. Depending on the severity of what you’re looking to have photoshopped, your wedding photographer may not be able to perform this service. They either will completely refuse photoshopping services, since this is not their job. Or may request a payment in order to outsource this service. Either way, if you know ahead of booking your wedding photographer that you will need photoshopping done, it’s best to ask ahead of time if this is a service they offer. This will save you a lot of time, energy and money for both you and your wedding photographer.
Picture this, your wedding day is over and reality is kicking in and you are just DYING to see how your wedding photos turned out. Don’t worry, as an Oregon Wedding Photographer I TOTALLY get it. You are so curious to see how everything came together. Knowing this, your wedding photographer is hard at work editing through thousands of images to make sure that you are receiving nothing but the best. With that being said, it’s important to discuss with your wedding photographer prior to hiring them their turnaround time.
Turnaround time is essentially how fast you will receive your full wedding gallery. Most wedding photographers will send over a few sneak peeks within a few days of your wedding to hold you over while they are busy editing away your full gallery. Keep in mind that editing is a detail-oriented and meticulous process and must be done carefully. Ideally, while you want your images done ASAP you also want them to be done well.
On average, wedding photographers typically have a turnaround time of about 6-8 weeks after your wedding date. This can change depending on how busy they are, how in demand they are as well as their own structural rules within their business. If having your images done by a certain date are important to you, communicate that with your future wedding photographer. This will be HUGE in making sure that both of you are on the same page.
Naturally, one of the most important questions you’re going to ask when choosing a wedding photographer is how they like to work with their couples. For most of you, choosing a wedding photographer that meshes well with your wants and needs will be an important factor when hiring. You want a wedding photographer who is going to be on your side, make you feel listened to and heard, as well as be a resource for you during this stressful time. Make sure that when you’re vetting out your wedding photographers that you find someone that you actually like. Not only do you enjoy their work but you also enjoy them.
This question is very niche-specific but I feel I should touch on. For me as an Oregon Wedding Photographer I focus heavily on documenting your wedding day to the fullest. That includes including a perfect blend of candid and timeless-posed imagery. Now, is this the case with every wedding photographer? Absolutely not. Lately, in the wedding photography industry we have seen a shift in photography-style. Many wedding photographers are creating more candid-style imagery, which of course, we all know that I personally love. However, this may not be your cup of tea and that’s perfectly fine.
If you’re interested in working with a wedding photographer who heavily showcases their candid work and you’re a little worried that they won’t give you some of those beautifully posed images, just ask! Many wedding photographers, including myself, like to give the best of both worlds knowing that couples enjoy seeing a little bit of everything. This may not be the case with every wedding photographer though, so it’s best to be up-front in the beginning and just ask ahead of choosing your wedding photographer.
This is probably a wedding photographers worst nightmare and honestly something that we heavily prepare for. The last thing that anybody wants is for something to happen where we can’t make it to your wedding day. *gasps* I know, it’s a scary thought to think about but a necessary one at that. Most of the time wedding photographers will have a backup plan in the off-chance that something happens and they can’t make it to your wedding day. What that usually looks like is having an associate photographer take their place at your wedding. Don’t worry, most wedding photographers won’t just leave you hangin’!
An associate photographer is essentially someone who is vetted out by the wedding photographer (who most likely has experience) and will take their place on the day of the wedding. They will not be editing your images, instead just taking the photos the day-of. Your original wedding photographer will then be going through the images and editing them, same as what you agreed to before. The only difference they won’t be there on the day of. I know it sucks, but in case of an emergency or severe illness this is what wedding photographers will typically resort to. However, it’s best to bring it up when choosing a wedding photographer to make sure that they have a backup plan. While it doesn’t happen too often, it’s good to put your mind at ease.
At the end of the day, choosing a wedding photographer is a full-time job in itself. You’re hiring someone who is going to be there to document every single moment of your special day. So basically, it’s a big deal. You want to make sure that you’re choosing a wedding photographer who is going to be by your side, listen to you and give the end results that you will absolutely die over. That may be me or… nope it’s me.
Hey, I’m Analy! An Oregon Wedding Photographer ready to document your love story in a candid and timless way. Inquire here and let’s chat through your wedding day vision.