At the heart of every well planned wedding is a list of the right questions to ask ahead of time. With wedding photography, it’s important to ask the right ones so you know what to expect. Wedding photography is one of the most important things you’ll invest in. Here is a list of some “not so obvious” questions to ask your wedding photographer so you can be sure you’re getting the things you deserve for a stress free wedding day.
There are two common types of packages offered among wedding photographers:
All day coverage (our favorite!)
Often times in hourly packages, there’s a fee if you go over the allotted time, and these fees can be pretty pricey. If this method of planning suits you, there’s nothing wrong with that! But if the thought of the photographer missing moments shortly after they leave stresses you out, you might want to add that to your list of requirements in your search!
Be sure to ask how much the fees are if you go over on an hourly package, and if having them stay past the time is even an option.
When will I get to see my wedding photos? This is one that should definitely be at the top of your list. It’s an unfortunate truth that many couples assumed they’d get their photos back in a reasonable amount of time, and months or even well into the following year, they’re still waiting to see the photos. Tragic!
If your photographer is a full time professional, they’ll have a system in place to make sure you get to relive your wedding day in a timely fashion. We love 2 week turnaround times since we believe when you’re investing in your photography you’re also investing in the service a professional provides.
Photographers obviously display their best work on their website, but without seeing a full gallery, how can you be sure they know how to tackle the problems and situations that come up in the entire span of a wedding day?
You want to make sure your photographer is consistent throughout all parts of the day. What happens if they are only displaying the few good photos of each wedding they shoot?
Your wedding day is way more than just portraits of you and your partner so before committing to anyone, be sure to request full galleries that were delivered to their previous clients, or at the very least make sure to look for consistency in any blog posts they’ve posted of weddings!
What an undervalued question! As photographers we have the rare opportunity of getting the chance to work with pretty much every single vendor that’s a part of your wedding day.
Over the years, chances are we’ve likely built up a strong list of friends and recommendations for vendors that stand out among the rest we’ve worked with. That list is gold and if you are still searching for something, your photographer might be able to help you find someone that you can trust!
View our wedding vendors list here! There’s nothing we gain from recommending these people other than the comfort of knowing your wedding day is in good hands.
Ever notice how when you try and take a picture with your cell phone in a dark room, the camera gets slow and the picture becomes super distorted, grainy, and gross? Well, that applies even to our professional cameras as well.
This is a touchy subject among photographers who proclaim they only shoot in natural light, but what happens when there is none to work with? What if the venue is an extremely dark barn or ballroom, and has incredibly high ceilings?
This situation is quite common, and ultimately some kind of artificial light is required on the wedding day. Your photographer doesn’t have to have 10 flashes set up all over the place, but you should be assured that they bring enough for every type of lighting situation.
When done right, you shouldn’t even notice it. But without it, your pictures indoors can suffer. Check out this venue’s reception from Ballroom at the Ben. Without any artificial lighting, that ballroom would be impossible to to shoot in without the pictures being of a much worse quality.
Different photographers shoot in different ways. Some are very active and animated throughout the day, and some refuse to say a word unless spoken to.
There’s nothing wrong with any of the different shooting styles photographers have, as long as it’s what you’re looking for!
If you’re looking for guidance on being posed or help being reminded throughout the day and sticking to a timeline, a “fly on the wall” type of photographer probably isn’t for you. But if the idea of a photographer capturing only candid moments with no interactions sounds like a breath of fresh air, a documentary working style sounds perfect!
Ultimately, it comes down to making sure your photographer’s working style aligns with what you want for your wedding day. If you’re unsure, ask why they like to shoot that way, and you’ll know if it’s something you want!
For example, our shooting style is a healthy mix of being helpful and unobtrusive. We work with you to find out how much/little direction you want, and throughout the day we like to be close by and helpful, but at the end of the day we want you to be focused on the moments with your loved ones, not us.
Separate from a working style, hearing how your photographer describes their artistic vision can help you better understand what it is they value capturing on the wedding day, and how you relate to it.
Take our description for example:
Our style is one that’s meant to capture the raw emotion of your wedding day. We value real moments over posed moments, but even our posed moments are set up in a way that produces emotion in photos that will bring you to tears.
Our editing style has been crafted to last generations, with a heavy focus on the timelessness and colors of Portra and Fuji film. We don’t like trendy looks, because we wouldn’t want your photos to ever look “dated”, or see you regret the style because the trend died out. (JNCO jeans anyone?)
See how much information you can get from asking a question like this? It can help you learn and narrow down what you really want! Every photographer is going to have a different answer to this question, and that’s what makes us all unique.
Ask this question, and the amount of people that say no may surprise you. Insurance costs money, but it’s a very important part of making sure your photographer is prepared.
Whether it’s a tipsy groomsman accidentally breaking photography equipment (it’s happened before!), or an assistant getting injured on the day of, you should be sure your photographer has the proper equipment and liability insurance.
Most venues are actually requiring a certificate of these insurances now, because the last thing you want is to deal with a legal battle that you shouldn’t even be a part of because the photographer wasn’t insured. Make sure your photographer is prepared with the proper insurance!
This is mostly common practice now, but there are still some “bait and switchers” out there why only allow you print your photos through them.
Unless you’ve hired a photographer using the old school method of “low package price, high print costs”, there’s no reason why you shouldn’t have rights to print your images off yourself. You paid for them!
We offer an online store with every gallery we send so that you have access to prints form a professional lab with museum quality, but you are by no means obligated to print from there. Make sure your photographer offers that same thing!
If a photographer only has one camera body, what happens if they drop it and it breaks? Do they just go home? Switch to their phone instead?
Your photographer should have adequate backups for everything essential on a wedding day. This applies to everything from memory cards, lighting, lenses, camera bodies etc. All of these things are prone to failure on a wedding day, and we’ve seen it happen first hand!
You definitely don’t want to be one of the couples that ends up not having wedding photos because your photographer didn’t prepare backups in advance! Make sure your photographer has a plan for the worst possible situations.
10 questions you need to ask your wedding photographer. We hope this allows you to find someone who’s adequately prepared to handle your day, because we believe you deserve a stress free experience. These moments will be some of the best in your entire life, and making sure you’ve got them all preserved regardless of who you go with is our number one priority. Your love story deserves it.