There are a LOT of considerations that go into choosing a photographer/videographer for you big day, it can be overwhelming! At the end of the day, as perfect as it may be, all you take with you from your wedding is your spouse and the memories you made. Make sure you capture them well!
Below are the top five ways to prepare as you start looking for vendors.
1. Know what you want
This may sound simple, but so often I talk with couples who just can't put into words what they are looking for. So before you start speaking with photographers/videographers sit down and really narrow down what you are looking for. There are plenty of amazing artists out there, but they may not shoot the style or content your looking for.
Really take time to decide what aesthetic you want. Do you like the more casual look of candids, or a more formal straight on approach? Maybe you want to find someone who gives you that GQ/Vogue vibe. Take time to find other weddings that have been shot in the style you like and put together a mood board to solidify your style.
Look at everything from color, to framing and posing. Try to think about what time of day your favorite looks were shot at. Was it more mid day when the sun is high in the sky? Or closer to sunset when the light is softer?
Also consider content, and what you want them to shoot. Do they shoot all the details as well as the full ceremony and toasts? What kind of portrait sessions do they offer? How do they shoot group photo's and formals? Do they offer aerial shots with a drone? How about a trailer? Do they provide an edit of that as well as the wedding film?
Once you find a look that fits you and your style, then you can compare the different offerings in your area.
2. Will you get along well?
You'll be spending a lot of time with your photographer/videographer, most likely more time than with any other single person at your wedding on the day of.
Beyond being able to tolerate someone for that much time, you'll also get a much better product from an artist who can put you at ease or make you laugh. If possible, meet them in person BEFORE you book with them.
Before any couple books with me, I always like to sit down with them. This gives us a chance to test the water. See how compatible we are. If it's not a easy conversation, more than likely it's going to be a more challenging day.
3. Are your photographer and videographer compatible?
If you're using both services, photographers and videographers need to be able to work together to ensure they both get complete coverage of the day.
If they can't function well together, there is a good chance they will be fighting for the best shots. This means neither will do as well as they could alone.
Once you've made a decision on one, ask them who they've worked with before. Whom do they enjoy working with the most? Is there anyone they refuse to work with.
For the most part, when I show up to a wedding I know I need to work as a team with the Photographer, almost as if we are the same company.
There is always a learning curve when working with someone new for the first time, but often I find a great new working relationship!
4. Fall in Love!
You've found the love of your life, now find an artist to fall in love with. Find someone whose work takes your breath away!
Whenever I speak with someone who starts the conversation by saying, "I LOVE your work!" I know it's going to be a good day. If your deciding between an artist you love and a budget option, it is completely worth it to find a way to make the money work. Remember, your media is the only thing beside your spouse you take with you!
And if money is an issue, don't be afraid to see if the company will work with you. I'd much rather work for someone who maybe can't pay as much but absolutely loves the way I work.
5. Talk to your friends
A large portion of work comes from past client referrals. Look at your friends photo's and video's if you see one you love, ask them about their experience.
What important in their decision making process? Whom else did they consider? What made them choose one artist over another? How would they review whomever they chose?
Chances are, if someone you trust had a good experience, you'll have better luck than hiring someone cold. And if they had a bad experience, you may want to stay away from them.
At the end of the day, your wedding is one of the most important days of your life. Whatever it takes to make it memorable and enjoyable is worth it!