April 12, 2013

When choosing your Wedding Photographer - Cheaper is NOT always BETTER -

St Nicholas Greek Orthodox Church 
No flash Photography was allowed.... - Still was illuminated!

Your Wedding Day.. Ahhh – You have waited for this moment almost all of your life… And now, here comes the planning… And along with all preparations, it is a good time to start shopping for a photographer – after all you do not want to trust those images to some hobbyist who “loves to take pictures” or someone in your party with a point-n-shoot {usually a good hear-ted friend}, right?
If you are reading this blog, you have probably landed here and the title has caught your eye –  I am so glad you’ve decided to check out this article, because finding a wedding photographer can be a bit overwhelming.  I know, prices range from almost nothing (friends with cameras, the hobbyist) to prices as high as $30-50,000 dollars!! And no! this figure is not a typo.
I can let you in a little secret, since you got this far – Good wedding photography is not cheap, but it is the most important investment you will make on your special day..  It is not an expense {key word} you are investing a lot into your big day.   In easier terms, when your wedding venue is over, the food will be eaten, the transportation will be returned, tuxes taken back and the dress and decorations packed away (possibly will never worn or used again – my gown is pretty in a box).  Now, your photos, Ah {Smile} – these are usually the only remaining evidence of all the hard work you put into your wedding day.
What we are saying is, that If you are hiring a wedding photographer, just make sure you hire a photographer that you are comfortable with and feel like you can actually trust to take on your day personally.  Even if it is not our booked wedding, just make sure you are truly confident they can handle the work load, the day, the guest, the lighting {that their gear can handle most lighting situations?} etc and treat you and your party with respect.
Professional photographers, we come in all shapes and sizes. We all have various levels of experience and education.  So to say not all wedding photographers are created equal.
We can say that we are not the low end cheap, but we are not the most expensive either.  We  do shot many weddings, and have multiple PRO camera bodies, PRO lenses and flashes, and we are ready for anything, for example if one of our cameras break down, you can trust we have backups, again not missing a moment. And this is exactly what you want when you are hiring a photographer.  Also, do not forget planning for the worst, is your photographer affiliated? Do they have insurance? What is the contract read? Are they professional? When you first met – Were they dressed appropriately to your interview?
With my wedding packages, there are always two of us taking photos.  I’ve used other photographers before, but the second photographer is USUALLY my husband.
We love what we do and we have fun shooting weddings.  Honestly, we are so grateful to work with so many couples who truly understand the value behind our craft. And we have created some pretty sweet relationships as well as with many clients that we have photographed.
Sometimes in conversations with friends and colleagues, we are always amazed at some of the horror stories we hear about their wedding photographers and the stuff we come across in social media.
There are of course lots of  talented photographers too, but, the way of handling your day’s captures are different.  So, it is important to meet and survey the professional photographers you are considering for your special day.  Not everyone is a good fit ( whether be for you {client} OR the photographer).
Your overall experience is an important factor for all those involved, when you have a great rapport.  For some reason if you are  not comfortable with their style.  Do not settle.  Find someone that you will  be comfortable with, remember they will be on your every moment on your day.
Keep in mind that  good professional photographers get booked  real FAST!
Make sure they are not double booking on your day or taking other sessions during your day.   A story last year we had to turn away 5 brides requesting wedding dates in September and November. We simply could not shoot them because we were already booked – our attention is solely to you, and if hiring someone – expect nothing less!
If you find someone you really like, make sure you get in touch with them as soon as possible. If for example, our style suits your taste – send a message – even if not in the area… {hint}
Perhaps, you are just researching – give us a ring- or Skype with us and feels like you would would just like to come by and visit.  We would be glad to let you look more closely the work we do, and our process and see if you like what I offer.
Never imagined I could really write this long blog, but I know it has gotten longer than intended.
Final words – When hiring a professional wedding photographer just make sure you like them as a person/people and you can tell a lot by first impressions.
So, If you are a fit {like peas in a pod} you will likely click with them during your  day and it will reflect in the outcome of your photos.
Also, make sure they have good gear and backups to handle your wedding and most lighting situations.  (Plus, make sure they actually know how to use it!) If you’re not having an outdoor wedding with a nice cloud cover and a brightly lit reception, you might run into issues. Saying that also, make sure you like their past work and this perhaps will be the best predictor of the outcome.
So, even if their price might be right, but their style might be wrong.  Cheaper is NOT  always better.  Sometimes cheaper is just CHEAP and the product will be shown and discussed for times to come among friends and family…. True story!
Now, there is a lot of work ahead… Let’s plan this day!
Allie Miller
Owner/Photographer – Eastern NC