When the wedding is over and you’re home from the honeymoon, there is one more thing to look forward to – looking through the photos. These are the moments, captured and framed, that you’ll be able to enjoy forever. It’s something that you just don’t want to go wrong – so picking the perfect photographer is a must.
There are plenty of photographers to choose from, with different styles, prices and package options, so you have to do some research before you make your decision. Good photography will come with a price tag but basing your decision on price alone is not the best way to get photographs that you love.
Where to find the right wedding photographer
You’ll find plenty of wedding photographers with a simple search online in your area. Main wedding websites such as Hitched have a directory of photographers searchable by location as well. And, if you have chosen your venue already, speak with them to see if they have a recommendation. Coton House Farm have a list of recommended suppliers for every aspect of a wedding, including some trusted photographers and videographers.
Selecting one photographer can be difficult. However, start by looking through each website. Every photographer has their own style, which will show in their images. A good website will have lots of different weddings in a gallery, showing you how creative they are, with different poses, lighting, group shots and so on.
Great photographers have great reviews
If you have selected a shortlist of styles you like, the next thing to consider is feedback and reviews. Always read reviews. Independent sites like Hitched, Google business pages and Facebook pages will give you a great idea of how much previous customers liked the images and the service they received.
If you can, try to get testimonials from friends or colleagues as well.
Talk to the wedding photographer you prefer
Next, speak to the wedding photographer you prefer. First, check they are available on your wedding date, as that’s obviously vital. Then, ask if they can provide you with more testimonials and more pictures to review, as they are unlikely to have their full portfolio on their website.
It’s time to get into the details
If you think you’ve found the one, now it’s time to get into the details. There are some questions you should ask.
Have they every worked at your chosen venue before?
If they have, they’ll already know where to stand to get great shots, or how good the lighting is. If they haven’t, then it’s worth asking if they take time to get a look at the venue in advance, especially if there is a particular image you have in mind.
Who is taking the photos?
This isn’t such a random question as you might think. If you are going with a larger agency there may be a number of different photographers available. And some photographers work with a colleague on the day, with one taking the main photos while the other moves around the guests, for example.
What happens on the day in an emergency?
If for some reason your photographer can’t make it, do they have someone else who can stand in? After all, illnesses or car troubles do happen.
Do you have any special shots you would like taking, and will they do it?
It’s normal to have a list of particular shots you want, or specific groups. In fact, we have a free download here with a checklist of some of the most common shots. However, if you have also seen something on their website or elsewhere that you particularly like, take a sample to the meeting as ideas.
What are their timeframes for providing you with a first look or the final photographs?
Some photographers can be particularly fast in editing and sending you a (usually online) album of your photographs to look at and select your favourites. Others can be seemingly slow. Make sure you have an agreement for timeframes, and whether those pictures will be prints, digital or both. You may want to ask who ends up with copyright of your photos. It might sound strange, but as the person taking the picture, your photographer can retain copyright to the images and use them as promotional materials, even though you have paid for their services. If you’re not bothered, that’s fine. But if you particularly don’t want your image being used in marketing materials, make sure you bring it up.
Finally – ask about wedding photography packages.
Ok, this isn’t really the final thing. You really should already have an idea of your budget, and most wedding photographers have a package or price list on their website. But make sure you go through every detail of the package and the contract, so you know exactly what to expect.
Wedding packages can vary quite a lot in price range, but remember that you are hiring a specialist who not only spends the whole day with you, your family and your guests, but also takes many more hours editing and preparing your photographs afterwards with their expertise and equipment.
So how much does your wedding photography cost?
Coton House Farm have a number of recommended photographers, each with their own style and packages. Prices can range from £1000 up to £2000.
Beki Hare Photography can offer a half day shoot, starting from the ceremony, while a full day shoot includes being with you from the morning as you prepare for the day.
10 Foot Tall Photography includes two photographers who are with you from the moment you start getting ready, and as well as your digital images, they create a slideshow set to music you can share with friends.
One last thing. You may well have some ideas of shots that you would love. Get in touch with Coton House Farm today, and as we show you around our beautiful countryside venue, we’ll also point out some of the amazing backdrops that look fabulous in print, so you can start making your top list of must-have wedding photographs straight away.
Wedding photography shot list
There can be nothing worse than looking back on your wedding day and realising you don’t have a picture of Great Aunt Maggie, or the perfect picture of you and your new spouse in front of The Old Dairy Barn where you exchanged your vows.
But don’t worry. We’ve compiled a checklist of the most commonly requested wedding photography shots, so you can select the ones that are most important to you personally, and discuss them with your photographer.