There are so many photographers out there in the current market. When you check Weddingwire or TheKnot there are pages and pages of featured wedding photographers and their work almost look the same! Some of them charge the price you can barely handle and the rest are triple of your budget. So how do you find the right wedding photographer in the current market? How do you filter the awesome from the great? How do you filter them to the best of your ability before contacting them? Let’s talk about all of them here!
Quality of the wedding photographer’s portfolio
Almost every wedding couple consider their photographer initially from the photograph, got attracted to it, then start contacting the photographer for availability. Almost no one (at least for me) would hire a photographer purely by knowing he/she is a nice person (which is also important). Overall, the couple is drawn to the photographer’s skills and ability to create an eye catching picture.
So what are these abilities? In order to help you find the right wedding photographer in the current market, I summarized the most important 3 things below:
Do they shoot well in low light situation?
This is probably the most important part in terms of photos. Check to see if the photographer does a great job shooting in low light situations. This will check their off camera flash skills and use of the manual controls of the camera. If all you see is outdoor weddings in perfect daylight condition, don’t be afraid to ask for samples of their wedding work.
Do they use a lot of Instagram style filters?
From my personal view, Instagram like filters can hide a lot of imperfections in a photograph. If you see those types of images all over the portfolio, ask the photographer for a complete wedding album sample so you can see the rest of the pictures.
How does the indoor reception dancing pictures looks like?
Fast movement in a low light situation is probably one of the hardest parts of the wedding to capture. If the photographer can nail it then it’s a great sign that he/she has the ability to capture your wedding very well!
What is the wedding photographer’s personality
Do they response quick in emails/phone calls?
The ideal time to response to an email is typically 24 hours. However, if the photographer is seriously considering you I think he/she should reply back in less than 12 hours (at least from my point of view). Therefore, in the first few emails check how long the photographer takes to answer you and you can almost see feel how much he/she cares working with you.
Do they sound excited when talking to you?
Continuing the last point, to find the right wedding photographer in the current market, check the enthusiasm of the photographer when he/she is talking to you or communicating to you via emails. The flow should feel comfortable so use your best judgment. Does he/she sound friendly? Do they appreciate you’re considering them and say thank you etc.
Do they book a lot of weddings every week? Double book?
I personally don’t believe it’s fair for the wedding couple if a photographer double book weddings on the same day. It happens to me personally and although the photographer did a great job I feel the photographer wasn’t at his best (saving up energy) because he still has another 8+ hours to work after my wedding. So if your wedding are shorter than average (less than 8 hours), and your wedding is in the early morning or later at night, ask the photographer if he/she will double book weddings when opportunity comes.
What is the wedding photography pricing
Does the highest package lift up to its standard?
When you check photography pricing it has ranges like the stock market. Some super high and some at the rock bottom. In order to do a quick scan to see if the photographer lift up to his/her stand you can check the following:
- Authority – Does the photographer has great connection online and offline? Online means his/her website links to different well known wedding websites and perhaps publications. And by offline I mean does he/she develop great connections with local vendors. You can always see this in the photographer’s facebook or Instagram posts.
- Prints– Does the photographer offer any prints? Usually photographers tends to start offering albums and prints in the later years of their wedding photography journey. Most of them want to get the photography crafted tuned before jumping to prints. Finding a photographer that offers prints could mean he/she is in the business long enough for you to feel secure of his/her competencies.
- Any offline authority – A great photographer should also be networking with other vendors in the local market. No matter it’s venue coordinator, other photographers, makeup artist and DJ, the photographer you are thinking of hiring should have good network with those people.
My name is Gary Lun and I’m an Atlanta wedding photographer that specializes in wedding and engagement photography. I locate in metro Atlanta but I do travel nationally and oversea! I am always looking for fun and friendly couples to capture their big day!