How to Choose a Wedding Photographer

Choosing a wedding photographer is one of the most significant choices you’ll make when planning your wedding. A good photographer will be intimately involved in your wedding, helping you think ahead of time about photo opportunities gauging the mood of the crowd, capturing subtle moments and intense emotions and remaining unobtrusive.

The photographer is one of the few vendors you’ll work with after the wedding, so choose well. Good wedding photographers book up early, so start your search as soon as you set the date.

To find a good photographer:

  • Call recently married couples who you know well enough to ask to see their photos.

  • Call caterers, banquet directors and wedding consultants and ask for their recommendations.

  • Look at the wedding portraits printed in your local newspaper and check for the photographer’s name.

  • Check out “real wedding” features in bridal magazines. Talented photographers have often shot these, which is why they’re being featured.

  • Obtain a list of wedding photographers from the Internet or by calling a trade organization like the Professional Photographers of America.

  • Surf the Web for studios in your area.

  • Consider flying in a photographer from another area. Airfare and room rates may be reasonable.

If relatives or friends who are photography buffs suggest that they want to photograph everything as well, tell them politely that you prefer them to be true guests and just enjoy themselves. Flashes from other cameras may set off lights that the photographer has set around the room. If you prefer to have no flash photography during your ceremony, state your wishes in the program.

If you like a photographer but feel you need to do more homework, say so. Ask the photographer to hold the date for a short while or at least give you the right of first refusal. Then make your decision as quickly as possible.

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