Top Tips for Choosing a Wedding Photographer

From the silhouettes against the setting sun, or the raindrops caught in the light, to the laughter and loving gazes captured with the lens, choosing a wedding photographer is one of the most important decisions you will make. Unlike the worn-out dance floor that goes quiet, the speeches that get absorbed, or the guest list that disappears at the end of the night, it is the captured moments that make your special day truly memorable.  Here are ten top tips to help you choose the right wedding photographer:

1. Decide what style you like:

Most photographers will tend to shoot in their own style, whether it’s creative, artistic, documentary, dramatic or lifestyle. You can go with something that is classic and traditional, natural and fun, or even bold and unique. The important thing is to match the photographer’s style with your desired aesthetic, though experienced photographers will be able to shoot a variety of styles, depending on your requests.

2. Spend what you can afford:

Know what your budget is but don’t skimp here. An excellent photographer will be expensive, but one of the biggest regrets most couples have is not hiring the best they could afford. Remember, you are entrusting them with your lifelong memories and having these documented well is worth it.

Use the handy WedPlan App to help keep on track with your budget. It’s free and available on Android and Apple devices.

WedPlan App on Android

Find WedPlan SA in the Apple store for all Apple devices.

3. Do your research:

Read through client feedback, see how the photographer responds, and check out their websites and blogs. Browsing through hundreds of photography websites can be daunting, so we suggest you begin by viewing our recommended photographers in this section and on the Marriage Meander website.

4. Meet the photographer:

Going from photo samples alone is never a good idea. It’s important to meet potential photographers in person to make sure you are on the same page. Apart from viewing their work, talk about your venue, your wedding style, and what you envision your dream wedding to be. Bridal fairs provide a great opportunity for this, or you can join a Marriage Meander Journey to meet a few trusted photographers in person.

5. View a complete album:

Every photographer will have a portfolio to feature their best work, but this doesn’t give you a well-rounded idea of their skills. It is recommended that you ask for 2-3 examples of weddings that they have done at a similar venue that you envision yours to be. View each album with a critical eye and look out for the sharpness of the images, the lighting, and the composition.

6. Make sure you like your photographer:

It is necessary that you are comfortable with and trust your chosen photographer as they will be very much a part of your day. You don’t want a photographer that is going to annoy guests or cause you to feel anxious. Your personalities need to be compatible and they should be able to put you at ease as well as bring the best out of you and the guests.

7. Compare packages:

Most photographers offer different packages to suit various budgets and desires. Understand what each includes and realise that you are paying for the photographer’s time on the day, the editing, your photographs and albums or products that come with it.

8. Consider a second shooter:

If your budget allows, consider hiring a second shooter as this will ensure that no tender moment is missed. Some photographers will provide a second shooter as part of the package. A suggestion is for one photographer to capture professional moments and the other to capture the ‘behind-the-scenes’.

9. Ask about backups:

Confirm if the photographer you are hiring has backup equipment and makes backup copies of all the images they take. This is critical for avoiding issues like malfunctioning equipment or lost wedding photos.

10. Leave them to do their job:

Once you’ve hired the right photographer, you can rely on them to capture and deliver your precious moments that will tell your story. Allow them to do their job before as well as on the day, knowing they will handle your wedding from start to finish. Remember, hiring service providers you trust will ensure you enjoy your day.

Find information and galleries for our recommended wedding photographers here:

Wedding Photographers in Gauteng

Wedding Photographers in KZN