What to know when choosing a wedding photographer

Karen Caffarini

You’ve tried on countless bridal gowns to find the perfect one, visited dozens of banquet facilities and tasted their meals, and spent many Saturday nights listening to bands and disc jockeys. ­­ You’re confident you’ve put together the perfect wedding, now how do you pick the perfect photographer to capture every special moment? Here are some tips. 

• Make sure they are offering everything that is important to you. Consider the certain number of pictures, certain type of album, engagement shoot, shooting in your chosen locations and high-resolution digital negatives.

• Ask to meet with the photographer who took the pictures you have seen and love. If you like him or her, make sure this specific photographer’s name is in the contract to ensure you won’t get a different, perhaps less qualified, photographer, Fisher says.

• Choose a professional photographer who best matches your personal style and your wedding day’s aesthetic or theme, recommends Chanan Steinhart, CEO and co-founder of MyPhotoCreations, on online destination offering free design software for creating photo products. Those with a retro theme may find photographers who shoot in black and white to be a good fit, he says.

• Know your budget. If you are limited in funds, think creatively, Steinhart says. You could hire the photographer for the ceremony and early hours of the reception, then have guests take candid pictures later on during the reception with disposable cameras. This will provide the couple with stunning professional pictures and fun shots.

• Ask questions, such as what they like most about being a wedding photographer, to get a feel for the photographer’s personality to make sure you get along, Fisher says.

• Look at photographers’ websites and blogs to determine the quality and style of their work. Look at sample albums. The photographer will capture your day in the same way, says Jaclyn Fisher, a wedding consultant and co-owner of Two Little Birds Planning with Caroline Covelli in the greater Philadelphia area. Look for good and bad reviews on blogs and websites, adds Steinhart. Check references.