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  • Jennifer M. Outlaw

You're Engaged! Now what? :: Booking your Wedding Photographer

NC Engagement Photos by AO&JO Photography

Yayyyyyy! You’re engaged! Let the planning (and pinning) begin…but where?

Here are a few important things you need to do before you book your wedding photographer…

First of course you need to pick a venue and a date! Many photographers won’t sign a contract with you until you officially have a date and venue set. Finding a venue you like and the dates they have open simplifies the whole process. There is nothing more frustrating than picking a date, then contacting all your favorite venues only to find out they don’t have that specific date available. Think about how much more complicated it would be if you had already signed a contract with a photographer for a specific date then had to change it because the venue was booked only to find out the photographer you had fallen in love with is already booked on the date your venue is open. It’s a mess! Find your venue, set your date then move forward.

Next, determine a budget and prioritize. How important is wedding photography to you? How well do you want to be able to relive your wedding day through your photos? There are many resources out there that can give you an idea about how much of your budget should be set aside for each vendor. Wedding Wire has a great resource.

Below are the 5 important things to think about when booking your wedding photographer.

Raleigh NC Wedding Photography

1. Do you love their photos? i.e. Their style of shooting and editing. Review their website, blog and portfolio to determine what their style is and if you like it. Documentary (more candids and spontaneous pictures), portraiture (classic, traditional posed shots, think your parents wedding album), fine art (similar to documentary with shots that reflect reality with a dramatic, dreamy feel) and edgy-bold (think out of the box) are a few of the different styles you may currently see in your search for your photographer.

2. Carefully review their blog, website and social media outlets to get an idea of their style and personality. A blog post from a single wedding can give you an idea of the range of pictures that you can expect from your day. Many times you can read posts and interactions on twitter, Instagram or Facebook to get an idea of who the photographer is and how they respond to clients and their feedback.

3. What do their past clients have to say about them? Always take the time to read their reviews. Past clients are the best resource to see how they carry themselves on the wedding day and in front of their clients.

4. Set-up a meeting. Before you decide on your photographer you will want to see the actual products that you will be receiving. Carefully review an album. Do you like the quality of the album, the layout of the pages. Can you feel the emotion and connection in the images? How is the lighting? Do you like the framing of the images? Does the couple looked relaxed like they are having fun? Do other guests at the wedding seem to have good interactions with the photographer? Are the guests smiling?

5. After meeting/talking with them…. Do you feel that they will fit in with you? Was the photographer excited about your vision? When they gave a suggestion, were they pushy or clear and respectful? Were you comfortable around them? Remember they will be with you throughout the entire day, almost shadowing your every move. You want to feel comfortable with them. You want someone who will put you at ease, not irritate you in anyway.

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