Questions to ask a wedding photographer

Questions to Ask a Wedding Photographer

I get it. There are a lot of wedding photographers out there, and sometimes you just don’t even know where to begin when searching. Your photographer is the sole vendor responsible for documenting your wedding. All of the details of your wedding are temporary, except your images. While we all want pretty images, but picking a photographer who will execute seamlessly while also providing excellent service, is key to picking a professional photographer. So to help the process, I have outlined 21 questions to consider when researching potential wedding photographers.

Questions to ask a wedding photographer

Wedding Photographer Questions About Background and Experience

As a starting point, ask questions that will reveal important information about a photographer’s background and experience. Get a sense of why they started in the industry and the journey their career has taken since then. The questions below are a few you can consider to begin.

1. How do you personally view and value love and marriage?

Ask this question to get a sense of the photographers personal values and perspective, and if they are in link with your values. It is important to have a wedding photographer that will support your vision, and the best way is to ensure they hold the same values as you and your soon-to-be spouse.

2. Why do you love what you do?

Wedding photography is an intimate profession. Photographers come from all shapes and sizes, and all have a pathway into this profession. Some may have previously worked in the corporate world, have science backgrounds, love business & entrepreneurship, or saw a need in the wedding industry that was missing. Why they are a wedding photographer should encompass the love they have for the industry, and how it will impact your wedding experience with them as a vendor during your wedding.

3. What is your favorite part of a wedding day?

What moment on the wedding day really pulls at the photographer’s heartstrings? Their answer will illuminate where their heart is and what they really care about on the big day.

4. What atmosphere during a wedding day allows you to create your best work?

As fun and joyful as the wedding will be, the photographer is still doing a job and has to create stunning images. Everyone needs ideal working conditions to produce their best work, photographers included. Asking this question will help you get a sense of if the vendor will thrive in the environment of your wedding day. Does their vibe match the vibe you anticipate for the wedding?

6. When working with couples, what do you value the most?

You and your partner have likely talked extensively about your wedding priorities, but each of your vendors has their own respective priorities they’ll bring to the mix, ones that should ideally align with your vision. I encourage couples to ask prospective wedding photographers about what they value most from working with their clients.

7. Do you have any advice for us in terms of selecting the right wedding photographer?

There is a lot of information online about wedding photography, and weddings in general. Ask a wedding photographer their take on advice and why they view it from the angle that they do.

Questions to ask a wedding photographer

Wedding Photographer Questions About Style and Inspiration

The photos from your wedding day will become cherished keepsakes by which you remember your wedding day. Plus, you want a pro with a distinct point of view, not someone that is just going to copy what’s trendy with other photographers. As such, it’s critical that you ask questions pertaining to a pro’s style and artistic approach. These questions will help you gain an understanding of their creative process and source of inspiration.

8. How would you describe your wedding photography style?

A wedding photographer can be the best in the business in terms of skill and quality, but if their aesthetic and style don’t match your wedding vision, they might not be the best fit for you and your partner. Check out their social media account as well to get a deeper understanding of the style they describe.

9. What is your photo editing style?

The wedding photographer’s photo editing style will also affect the end result of your wedding photos. Note if their style is bright, timeless or moody, as they will affect the outcome of your final images. A bright and airy photographer will not provide dark and moody images, and its best to understand what editing style you prefer before booking a photographer.

10. What inspires you?

This is a broad question, but it gives insight on their background, and why they lean a certain way in images.

11. When you’ve photographed so many weddings already, how do you take photographs that tell our story in a unique way?

Weddings are taking place every day, but your wedding is still your own day to plan uniquely. And you want a photographer that appreciates that and will help make your day feel authentically yours.

Questions to ask a wedding photographer

Wedding Photographer Questions About Budget and Packages

As with all potential wedding vendors, you need to discuss budget so you can ensure you’ve allocated enough funds to cover the cost of the photographer you hope to book. Beyond simply asking about cost, this is the time when you should also discuss the types of packages a vendor offers and what’s included at each tier of service. You want to walk away from the conversation with crystal clarity about what your budget will and won’t cover.

12. At what price do your packages begin?

The final cost of your photography will depend on numerous factors, like how many hours of service you book and any add-ons you have. But you can ask about starting prices early in the inquiry process to gauge whether the business is roughly within the range you’d been planning on or if they’re outside your budget. Its best to also understand your own personal budget when addressing this question, because they may be the best photographer, but if your budget is not in-line with the starting price of their packages, they are not the right photographer for you.

Many photographers outline their pricing right on their website, and inquiring for more information will help give a better understanding of what is included & other pricing options.

13. What do your wedding packages include?

Talking about packages and pricing is a must. Most wedding photographers will offer different packages that include a certain number of hours, engagement photos, a second photographer, prints and albums. Clarify what is included within the quoted price and what add-ons will cost additional fees, such as travel costs for destination weddings, overtime hours or shooting other pre-wedding events like the rehearsal dinner. If the photographer works with a team, such as an assistant or second shooter, double-check who will be shooting your wedding as part of the package.

Questions to ask a wedding photographer

Wedding Photographer Questions About Logistics

So you’ve covered all the preliminary questions, now it is time to ask your wedding photographer questions pertaining to logistics for the big day. These inquiries will help you iron out all the minutiae.

14. Are you available on our wedding date?

If the answer is no then the photographer’s reply to everything else is moot. It’s paramount that you ask early on if your photographer has availability on your wedding date. Many photographers book 6+ months in advance, so the more you understand about your wedding date, the easier it will be to plan accordingly.

15. What’s your biggest tip for couples to get the best wedding photos?

Sometimes you just don’t know what you don’t know. An open-ended question like this provides space for the photographer to tap into their expertise and relay a nugget of wisdom they feel is important from a place of professionalism, VS from a place your friends and family will give.

16. How do you handle unforeseen circumstances?

While you hope nothing unexpected happens on the wedding day, but every wedding does. I don’t say this to scare people, because many unforeseen circumstances are very small, such as it takes a little longer than expected to get in the dress. But it is important to understand how photographers handle changes and how they can pivot as the day shifts.

Life is unpredictable. If something should happen and the wedding photographer is unable to photograph your wedding, it’s nice to know they have some sort of backup plan in place. The same goes for the photography logistics and backup equipment. From the day of the actual wedding all the way to post-production, the photographer should be taking certain precautions. This could mean everything from having extra memory cards on the wedding day to saving photos in multiple places.

17. What’s your approach to posing and capturing a wedding day?

This is an especially helpful question if you tend to feel shy in front of the camera and want to know how a photographer will direct and instruct you.

18. Can we request specific shots?

As you’ve been planning your wedding, chances are you’ve accumulated Pinterest boards chock-full of photo inspiration that perfectly encapsulates your photography style. If you’d like to recreate some of those images on your big day, ask if this is something the wedding photographer is open to delivering. Many wedding photographers take photo requests and may also have you fill out a questionnaire in which you can indicate which shots are the most important to you. But also keep in mind that you’re hiring the pro for their expertise so it’s important that you don’t limit them by enacting too many requests, and to trust the process.

Interested in a first look, or on the fence about doing one? Click here to find out more.

19. When will we receive our wedding photos? How do we receive our images?

Once the wedding day is over, the excitement to see your wedding photos starts building. Your wedding photographer will likely take their time editing the photos before getting them all back to you. Still, it’s important to know upfront what that time frame will receive the final gallery, and how they are delivered. If any prints/albums were included in the package, understand how and when those items are also delivered.

20. What are the next steps?

Once you’ve gotten through all of your pressing wedding photographer questions and you feel they are a perfect fit, the last question to ask is about the next steps needed in order to hire them for your big day. This might include asking how far in advance you need to book them, reviewing the contract, paying the deposit and going over other logistics, such as refund and cancellation policies, payment methods and liability insurance.

Most professional photographers will not book you until a contract and deposit has been paid. Most will also not hold your date, and are a first come first serve basis based on contract signing. Discuss both of these with your photographer, and understand the conditions around them.

Interesting in chatting about? Click here

21. Can we buy albums through you?

We love social media, but real quality art should be on your wall. Once the wedding is over and the photographs are edited, you don’t want them sitting in an online gallery forever. Ordering prints and wedding photo albums is the best way to be able to enjoy these keepsakes fully.

22. Do you offer engagement or bridal sessions?

Many photographers love to do engagement and/or bridal sessions before your wedding. Not only does it help you get comfortable in front of the camera, with your photographer, but also allows you to actually enjoy the wedding process. Treat your self!

Looking for information on bridal portraits? Click here

Looking for information on engagement sessions? Click here

23. I am worried we will miss photo opportunities during the wedding – can you help recommend a timeline to avoid any potential concerns?

Absolutely! Each couple will have a unique wedding and wedding timeline. I can help recommend planners if you need one, but also help ensure nothing is missed so you have the timeless images you desire. Many couples get married around sunset, and in Eastern North Carolina, that can create some challenges. Want to know more about timeline recommendations? Click here

Questions to ask a wedding photographer

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