How to choose a wedding photographer

After many years as a wedding photographer, Moira Nell believes there is something truly special about wedding photographs – no matter, she says, how “no matter how old or young or how in or out of love” the couple are!

“I can look at wedding photography for hours – just admiring the magic of it all.” says Moira, who runs First Memories Portraits in Perth, WA.

“The look in their eyes, the stolen glances across the church aisle caught just at the right moment, the love it brings into a room full of otherwise acquaintances or strangers. Yes, it’s a beautiful time that brings everyone together.”

But, choosing the wrong photographer, or even worse, a bad one, means you could miss such precious moments.

Moira says there are several things you need to consider – and ask about – before signing on the dotted line including:

The style of photography:

This is definitely something one should consider carefully before choosing who they wish to hire. Don’t be scared to have a meeting with the photographer and ask to see numerous photos they have taken to get an idea of what they can offer you and what you are more than likely going to end up with. It’s one thing to have a handful of brilliant photos to email out to potential clients, but you should ask to see a range of photos – black and white, colour, sepia, panoramic and not just wedding shots (if they have them)… all these things will give you an idea of their “eye”.  An eye for detail is something not everyone is born with, and unfortunately, some photographers get out there with their list of what they need to capture on the day, without a sideways glance of what else is going on around them. Some of the most stunning photos are the ones of flowergirls hiking up their skirts to stamp in some mud or grandma’s wiping away a tear at the sight of their beloved grandson or daughter getting married. These images can go uncaptured if your photographer doesn’t think outside the box.

Decide on your budget

But be reasonably flexible – you often get what you pay for.  Don’t think you can hire someone on the day for $400 off Gumtree and expect them to produce the same amazing images that a professional photographer will give you. There is a reason why wedding photography can be so expensive. It takes hours of work on the day and then triple the hours work editing and making sure each individual image is absolutely perfect. It’s your one day that you can never redo again and if your photographer isn’t experienced enough to know what to expect and how to conduct themselves, you could have lost your precious memories forever. Not any photographer can be a wedding photographer!  And just because Uncle Peter takes a “good shot”, doesn’t mean you should entrust your most important day to be documented by him.  Not only does he probably not have a $10,000 camera like most photographers, but he probably doesn’t know how to edit that pimple off your neck or make your teeth a nice pearly white colour with editing.  See the photos below, the first photo is nice, the second photo is much better!  Just a bit of editing can really make a photo take on a whole new feeling.

Make sure you work together well

Don’t book through a large photographic company only to have someone rock up on the day that you’ve never met and clash with. It will ruin your day if you’re fuming over them bossing you around like Hitler holding a camera.

Relax: Go with the flow

if you’re uptight on your day, it will show in your photos. 🙂  Hand over the reins to your carefully chosen photographer and let them capture you how you are, naturally.

photographer in action

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