It’s the best of times and the worst of times if you’re looking for a wedding photographer.
Let’s start with the good. There are so many great wedding photographers creating beautiful works of art for their clients. My fellow photographers inspire me every day. Couples can choose between traditional photographers, photojournalists, fine art photographers, fashion photographers or a little bit of each.
Most wedding photographers not only take beautiful photos, they also run ethical businesses. Which brings us to the bad: There are some photographers that mislead brides and grooms. One website that’s exposing these unethical photographers is stopstealingphotos.com. Some studios are using other photographers’ work in their portfolios, on their websites, blogs, facebook, and online ads. Not only is it unethical, it is also illegal to post another photographer’s work without his or her permission. Some of these photographers say that they were inspired by another’s work. I’m inspired by many photographers, too – but I don’t claim their work as my own. I also love Adele, but I wouldn’t send clips of her singing as my audition. As if it’s not difficult enough choosing a wedding photographer, now you have to make sure the photographer actually took the photos you love!
Here are some questions to ask potential photographers before deciding on the photographer for you:
1. How many weddings have you photographed? Have all of those been as lead photographer?
We all start somewhere and there is nothing wrong with hiring a photographer who is starting out. However, would you pay $5,000 for a photographer who had only photographed one wedding as a 2nd photographer?
2. Ask to see wedding albums or photos from complete weddings that tell the story of that day. A good photographer will be able to share fifty or more great and unique photos from one wedding.
3. Read public reviews of the photographer, however do so with some skepticism. One of my favorite make-up artists received one negative review from a client amid dozens of great reviews. She’s still awesome in my book.
Don’t be afraid to ask for references. Especially helpful are references from couples whose weddings are in the photographer’s portfolio or blog.
Planning a wedding is exciting and finding the right photographer can seem daunting. Hopefully these questions will help in your search. If you have any questions about wedding photography (even if they’re not about Polka Photos), just let me know!
And Happy St. Patrick’s Day! In honor of the day, here are a few images from Alexa and Matt’s wedding that show off the Irish bride’s Celtic tattoos. To Alexa and Matt:
May you be poor in misfortune,
Rich in blessings,
Slow to make enemies,
Quick to make friends,
But rich or poor, quick or slow,
May you know nothing but
Happiness from this day forward!