Choosing a wedding photographer is sometimes a daunting task. A photographer is usually the second wedding vendor that's booking right after the venue. I know there are so many choices out there to choose for your wedding photographer, so I put together a list of my 5 essential questions brides should ask their wedding photographer.
1. Do you have insurance?
Photography is an unregulated profession and you'd be surprised by the number of photographers who aren't a legal business with insurance. Do you really want to trust you're special day with someone who isn't insured? What if your venue requires your photographer to have insurance and show proof before allowing them to photograph on-site? You want to make sure you hire a professional for your wedding and having insurance is a big part of that. My business insurance is through a company that specializes in photography insurance. That means they protect against things that some other companies don't.
2. Do you know how to use flash in dark situations?
So you're looking at photographers and you see all their gorgeous photos taken during the day. But what about photos taken in dark rooms or at night? If your ceremony is after sunset (more common for winter weddings) or your reception is planned to take place at night, you need to make sure your photographer knows how to use flash so your photos don't turn out dark and unusable. If all you see if beautiful daylight photos, it wouldn't hurt to ask to see photos taken at night or in a dark room.
3. When will I get my images back?
This will vary from photographer to photographer and there are so many factors that come in to play. I've heard stories of couples waiting 6 months or even years to get their photos back. So make sure you have a definite timeline of when you'll receive your photos from your wedding photographer.
I can only speak for myself, by I tell my couples that their wedding photos will be delivered in 6 weeks. But I honestly strive to get my couple's photos back in half that time. I have perfected my editing workflow to make it as efficient as possible so that my couples aren't left waiting for months to see their wedding photos.
4. Do you have a plan if your gear malfunctions?
There are some photographers out there that jump into wedding photography without being fully prepared with all the gear they need. Make sure that your photographer has a plan for if their gear malfunctions during the day.
What's my plan? Backups. Backups. Backups. I only use cameras with two card slots just in case one of my cards malfunction. I also label my cards with the date so I know when they were purchased so I can discard them when they get too old. I also always bring along 2 cameras on a wedding day. You may see me with only one on a wedding day, but I always keep my second camera with my lenses just in case. I have also invested in a cloud backup system along with my hard drives (which also have a backup). I want to make sure even if something happens with my gear, I can still go on photographing your day as if nothing happened.
5. Do I need a second shooter?
There are so many reasons why I'm a big fan of a second photographer. My first reason is that I'm able to make sure your day is captured fully. I can't always get photos of getting ready for both sides of the wedding party if I'm the only one shooting. There's only one me. A second photographer also allows for different points of view and different angles when we are shooting together. I also feel like a second photographer fits into my "always have a backup" philosophy. There's someone there when I'm busy capturing something else. Since I physically can't be in two places at once, there's another photographer there to make sure the moment is captured.
Make sure to ask to see a full wedding gallery. You want to make sure you not only see the best of the best from the photographer's website and portfolio. Seeing a full gallery can give you a better idea of what your day will look like with that photographer. I'm more than happy to send over galleries for my inquiries to look over.
I hope you found these 5 essential questions brides should ask their wedding photographer helpful. I wish you the best of luck with your search for the perfect wedding photographer for you.
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I serve Baton Rouge, New Orleans, Lafayette, and the surrounding areas. I specialize in wedding photography for couples that not only want vivid and classic photos but want a photographer that will help them plan their wedding photos so their wedding day is seamless from getting ready to the grand exit.