Picking the right photographer for your event is one of the most important vendor decisions you will make. The images your photographer captures are the memories you will share for a lifetime. Here are a few tips for selecting your perfect photographer.

Sixteenth and Broadway

Sixteenth and Broadway

Getting a feel for the photographer’s personality.  You will be spending most of your day with your photographers so it would be a good idea if you liked them! Do they make you feel comfortable and relaxed? Your photographer should be able to meld in with their environment; whether you are getting ready with your close friends or sharing a loving look with your partner. Your photographer shouldn’t be a strong force, but capture the moment without disturbing it.

How many photographers do I need? - If it’s in your budget, you should have two shooters. With two shooters they will be able to capture both parties getting ready at different locations. You will also be able to capture the individual reaction of the couple when they first see each other and are experiencing the emotions of their ceremony. In my opinion this is priceless!

JennaBeth Photography

JennaBeth Photography

How many hours of photography do I need? You need 7 hours of photography to cover your event - don't think you can get away with 6 and take on a lower price, you will end up adding on the additional time later on.

Image sharing - You will want to make sure you will have access to the digital images your photographer takes, even if it's for a limited time. Make sure to verify with your photographer about sharing the images they have taken, especially on social media. They may request that you use a branded version for platforms such as FB.

Julie Mikos Photographer

Julie Mikos Photographer

To purchase an album or not to purchase an album…? Talk to your photographer about the types of albums they have to offer - ask where they are made, materials used, and how environmentally conscious they are. Ask about the longevity of the binding and the effect of the paper on the prints. Your wedding album is a family heirloom for many generations to enjoy. Albums are a great item to put on your gift registry too. If you are undecided about the investment, see if there is a time limit.  Can you order your album for your anniversary gift to each other? The first year is paper after all!

Shot List template - Your photographer should be able to provide you with a simple shot list to help you identify the important people you wish to capture. Get them to show you an example photo list - will they provide you with a template to work from, how will they insure to capture all the photos (specific family members) you need? And don’t forget the little details! Make sure to have your invitation on hand for them to capture, let them know if the cake knife or topper is a family heirloom you wish to remember.

Chrissy Lynn Photography

Chrissy Lynn Photography

What if your photographer can’t be on site? Ask about their back up plan if for some unforeseen reason they can't be at your wedding - people get sick, have babies, family issues. Who would be taking your photos if they are not there? If needs be, will they still be editing the images?

Posted
AuthorSadie Waddington
Sadie Waddington

Sadie Waddington

Tell us a bit about yourself and your company.

I am from England originally, however my family and I lived in Germany, Texas and Italy from the time I was 1.5-12 years old. My parents finally settled down in California and I have been in the Bay Area ever since. After completing my physical geography degree I knew the work I would do had to involve taking care of our environment. Co-founding Locally Grown Weddings allows me as a Wedding and Event Planner to work with an amazing collective of female owned, sustainable businesses.

How did you get into wedding planning?

I started my company in 2008, in response to a freshly finished Master’s degree and the collapse of the economy (see: No jobs for new Grads…). I had experience as a fundraiser and event planning in both the corporate and non-profit worlds, and it seemed I could provide needed service in the private sector while being my own boss. My hope was that in focusing on sustainable event planning, I could merge my environmental aspirations with a successful business model. While weddings are the main thrust of what I do, I hope that I can get more corporations and businesses to embrace sustainable practices for their holiday parties, corporate events, and meetings.

What’s your favorite part of the job?

It is a great feeling to help two people bring a large scale wedding in on time, and on budget. I always love watching new couples enjoy all their friends and family on their wedding day, knowing that any complication that arises will be taken care of by my team. We have helped make sure that all their decisions have been made, and that they are free to revel in all the fun of their special day.

What’s the biggest lesson you've learned, and would pass along to other new wedding planners just getting started?

Listen to your clients, make sure you are telling their story, not your own. Take the time to connect with your clients and make sure they feel supported and invested in the planning path you have mapped out with them. Be diligent about calendaring, and spreadsheets, they make things so much easier in the long run.

(c) Kip Evans

(c) Kip Evans

What are your hobbies or non-work-related activities?

Pre-kids, I loved bike riding. Hopefully I can get back into that, but with 2 young children, it may be a different kind of ride. I love to scuba dive and have my dive masters, although I haven’t taken the plunge in a couple years I’m looking forward to continuing my exploration of our underwater world. Spending time with my family, gardening, and eating chocolate are always great too!


 

Any great stories from working with a client?

I have been very lucky to have had the pleasure of working with a large number of wonderful couples. I have also had the privilege of working with a solid team of amazing wedding professionals. My favorite part at each wedding is that very special moment just after the couple has completed their ceremony and are walking together with these amazing grins on their faces. Full of excitement and a bit of relief after making the transition to being a couple.

What is your current favorite color combination?

I’m a big believer in many shades of green, surprise!

Are there any trends that you absolutely love or would love to see brides leave behind?

I love that couples can personalize so many details of their day. Incorporating design ideas that truly reflect each couples’ journey makes the event personal. I have been enjoying seeing the mixing of styles, vintage meets popping saturated colors, couples are breaking all the rules and I love it! The cake in the face smashing tradition is dated and should be retired.