12 tips for choosing the perfect wedding photographer
by Shashank Sharma
Posted: Jul 06, 2018
Posted: Jul 06, 2018
Wedding photography has seen an escalating rise in its demand. With pompous celebrations and high expectations to meet the desires of the chic, upscale society, wedding photography has found a reviving trend. Gone are the days of getting deliberate shots, bringing out the frustration of the couple and other people in the wedding charades. Today it’s all about candid shots where everyone is shown in their true spirit, enjoying the process wholeheartedly, without any deliberate move to seek attention. But photography should not always be about poses in uncomfortable scenarios, but showing what is inside. People enjoying the camaraderie proves to be a picture worth a thousand words. The wedding photography these days involves the whole journey of the family, along with the couple. This makes it all the more visually appealing every time one looks at the videos. So, how does one select the perfect wedding photographer which meets the demands of the family and more importantly understands them as a person as well? How to go about selecting a wedding photographer? These are some of the questions we’ll try to answer.
- Photographer’s style should match your taste – do they like black and white photography in albums, a lot of high contrast photos or low contrast photos, do they like photos with a lot of colour boost in them. What does the family essentially want to see in their album? These questions serve the base to decide the kind of taste the client family has. It plays an integral role in making the photographer understand the family needs in a better way. Once you compile a list of answers to these questions, it helps you shortlist the photographers you would want to hire for your wedding.
- Budget and required services – deciding on what approximate budget you want to use for your wedding photography is really crucial. It helps you zero in on the specific photographer. Having an approximate idea is good enough to decide the right person who can provide the services required in your own budget. For instance, you have allocated an amount of 80,000 rupees for the photography and video services for a one day wedding and the photographer you meet takes about one lakh rupees only for the photography session, you get the clear idea that this is not the photographer you are looking for.
- Recommendations – it is one of the best things that you can do before selecting the wedding photographer. Go and meet someone you know who got married recently, your neighbours, relatives, cousins etc. And ask for the wedding album. You can also ask them about the kind of services offered by the photographer apart from seeing the work in front of you. The feedback you receive is really helpful to make an informed decision. If it doesn’t help you close in on any one, at least you get to know the deals, budget or situations currently in trend.
- Ask for the album – don’t decide on the wedding photographer by seeing the photos posted on social media pages of the photographer. Call and set up a meeting and request for an album or two covered by them to get a wholesome idea of the kind of work they do. Go through all the photos, for the end to end coverage of a wedding is significant for you as their work is ultimately going to reflect in your album as well. It helps you to know how the entire wedding process has been covered by the photographer. Mehendi, Sangeet, haldi, the main ceremony, bidaai all should be presented like a story and should unfold in the album, evoking nostalgia for everyone involved in the wedding.
- Test run – a test run will help for sure. If you have any small ceremony a few months before the wedding, like an engagement ceremony or any other ceremony at home, you can go for a test run. This occasion is the best time to get a test run. If you really like the way the photos are presented, that’s the photographer you want for your wedding as well. This process has many advantages as there’s no pressure as the ceremony is small and you get to see the work for yourself even before the wedding. You can also share feedback and give suggestions wherever you require some improvement, if any. Both the photographer and the family thus, reach a common point which is crucial before finalising the photographer.
- Go local – if you have a certain photographer in mind from a different city, go for it, however, if you have options, then it’s better to go for a local photographer. There are numerous reasons for choosing the photographer from the same city, one, you get to easily set up meetings to decide on something before or after the wedding, two, the quotation is going to include the cost of travel and stay, thus, escalating the budget which may go out of bounds for you.
- Prefer full timers – it is highly important to hire a professional photographer who’s devoted fully to this occupation. When an occupation is your bread and butter, you don’t tend to take any feedback lightly or for granted as it’s going to hamper your growth and show in your recommendations. A professional will incorporate all the reviews in the next assignment or try to improvise on them in the present assignment, if possible. You can achieve a lot more with a full timer.
- Communication – communication plays a vital role in almost all professions and photography is no different. With wedding photography this skill has to be really good as you have to interact with the family for a wedding, you have to communicate their sentiments through your work. Establishing an emotional connection becomes integral in this case. It is very important for the client to set their expectations very clear and for the photographer to understand it well.
- Professionalism – it’s really important for you to know certain qualities of the photographer. Does he respond promptly to your emails or messages or phone calls? Is he patient enough to listen to all your requirements in detail? When a meeting is set up, is he punctual about the meetings? These traits can definitely help you get the better side of the photographer plus it’s always good to have a rapport with the photographer.
- Deliverable timelines – a photographer usually has a standard delivery time for albums. It is necessary to discuss about this timeline before finalising the photographer. Make sure you have a commitment on this one in the initial meetings.
- Brands – if you want to go for big brands, like best in the city, best in the state or country and budget is not an issue for you. Then, you have got a very small list for yourself and all you need to do is get in touch with the photographer and set up a meeting.
- Visit the location or locations where the ceremonies are going to take place. Showing the locations to the photographer helps to give him/her an idea of the kind of lighting, equipments etc. should be carried on the day of the ceremony.
The Jigsaw is a video production company headquartered in Mumbai and operating across the globe. Headed by media professionals, associated with leading broadcasters in the country. The Jigsaw is into video production, animation.