Booking your wedding photographer, and asking the right questions
In these difficult times I really feel for all those couples who have had to rearrange their wedding. I hope this process has been as easy as possible for everyone and these couples are now able to look forward to their new date. I think the next couple of years will see a surge of weddings, so we all have something to look forward to!
I think now is an appropriate time to just give a few tips for anyone looking for a wedding photographer. When booking your wedding photographer it is imperative you get it right. Your photographer is someone who will be with you for a long time on your big day, and the photos are one of the few things you will keep after the wedding. There are so many photographers out there, where do you start?
In these times it is more difficult to make an appointment to go and see a photographer in person, so I am talking to couples over the phone initially, and if they are interested after a detailed phone conversation I am happy to hold their date until we are able to meet up in person.
I have put together a few tips that may help couples when they start looking …
- Personal recommendation if possible. Do you know anyone who has recently got married? Who was their photographer and were they happy? If someone you know can recommend a photographer personally that is a good start. Do you know anyone in the industry?
- Look at different photographer’s websites to compare styles and packages. Are they more traditional or contemporary in the way they work? Not all will have their prices on their website, so contact 5 or 6 to get an idea of cost.
- Don’t necessarily go for the cheapest option. In fact, often there is a reason if someone is much cheaper than others. It could be a very good photographer just starting out who cannot charge established prices. But do make sure you know first.
- Having priced up 5 or 6, make an appointment to go and see 2 or 3. Not only do you need to make sure their portfolio is good, you need to feel comfortable with them as a person. They will be spending a lot of time with you on your big day, and it is really important you choose someone you get on with and whom you can relax around. Will they fit in to your big day or might they take over?
- Make sure you find out exactly what you get for the price – how many images, will they be digital, are they copyright free and printable? Some photographers charge extra for you to have all your images so be careful. Is an album included in the price? If so, do you want one – if not why pay for one? If the package does not include an album, can you get one at a later date if you want to? How long will the photographer be with you on the day?
- How long will it take for you to get all your edited images? A few months after the wedding is not quick enough and is not acceptable, in my opinion.
- Do guests get the chance to look at the photos and purchase them on a website?
- What happens if the unthinkable occurs and the photographer is taken ill or has an accident and cannot make it on the day? You need to know what plans they have in place to make sure you are not left without a photographer.
- Find out if the photographer has a back up camera in case of technical failure.
- Is the photographer happy to do all the shots you want and will they bring a list of all the group shot you would like and make sure they are all taken? Will they give you an itinerary and timings for photos on the day?
- What insurances do they have?
- How much deposit does the photographer ask for and when is the final balance due?
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WHAT MY CUSTOMERS SAY
Hazelwood Castle, Leeds
Haxby Methodist Church & The Grange Hotel, Bootham, York
Christina and Simon
Aldwark Manor, Aldwark, York
Nikki was fantastic! She worked with us from the very first informal meeting to discuss our budget and what we wanted to achieve. She gave us guidance and ideas about the best photographic places in our wedding venue and what options we had. Nikki was not only very professional but friendly too and had the perfect tone for gathering everyone together for the photographs so there was no waiting around. I have since recommended Nikki to a few brides to be with no hesitation.
Josie and Alan
The Alma Inn, Laneshawbridge
Nikki was brilliant on our wedding day: Professional, but personal at the same time. She made everyone feel so comfortable and, consequently, captured some really beautiful moments. As a "stressed out" bride, I really cannot compliment Nikki enough... in both the run up to our wedding, and afterwards, her communication was excellent - so proactive. She was incredibly organised and efficient. It really made this part of organising the wedding effortless. We would highly recommend her.
Rowan and Ian
Fairfield Manor, York
I am so glad Nikki did our wedding photography, she went way beyond our expectations of our photograph's! We had a wonderful happy day with our family and friends, and she captured the atmosphere perfectly. She more than delivered the outline I had given her, and we have beautiful artistic memento's of our very special day. I love how she seized the moments of different parts of our day, both the formal and informal. We will treasure these photographs, and I could not recommend her highly enough! The trouble will be now just deciding what to leave out of the album!
Nicola and Gareth
The Pavilion Hotel, York
The wonderful Nikki Bowling captured our day from bridal prep to the first dance (and beyond). We got the set pieces we requested and a plethora of candid, natural shots which capture our day perfectly. Nikki was very familiar with our venue and knew all the good nooks and crannies to get really wonderful pictures. A number of our guests commented on how great she was on the day. Getting her job done without imposing on the day and special time with family and friends. I would recommend her to anyone.