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CHOOSING A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER

Looking For Wedding Photography Money Saving Tips? Need A Wedding Photography Checklist?

See also engagement picture tips and cheap wedding videographer

Perhaps more than any other wedding vendor you use, choosing a wedding photographer has the ability to affect the memories you have of your wedding.

Though you will have clear memories of your wedding day at your first month's anniversary, years down the road you'll look back on your wedding photography to remind you of your special day.

To insure that your wedding memories are beautiful, you'll need a skilled wedding photographer to capture the moment on your wedding day. Securing a talented shutterbug is easy if you have a few tips under your belt.

Read on to find the answers to your most pressing wedding photography questions for getting the most out of your wedding pictures, plus a wedding photography checklist you'll want to use.


How do I get started in choosing a wedding photographer?
wedding photography money saving tips, wedding photography checklist

Before you begin your wedding photographer search, you'll need to determine what style of photography you like best. Generally there are two main types of wedding photography traditional and photojournalism. Traditional wedding photography consists of posed photographs while photojournalism focuses more on telling the story of your wedding in candid and action shots. Your wedding photographer could be a specialist in one of the two types or he could dabble in both.


How much money will I spend on photography?

Wedding photography generally costs from $500 to around $4,000. For a skilled photographer, you can expect to spend around $1,500 or more. Most wedding photographers offer a variety of packages to suit your budget. But because wedding photography is so important, it's much better to have a basic package with fantastic photos than a super deluxe package of mediocre photos. So, even if it means you'll be taking the cheapest package they offer, go with a highly skilled photographer over an average one. Remember also that your wedding photographer is one of the only wedding vendors that will provide you with a product that will last a lifetime. You'll look back on your wedding photos again and again, so don't go cheap or you'll regret it later.


Where can I find a wedding photographer?

As in your search for a wedding caterer, there are plenty of avenues for finding good photographers for your wedding. One of the best ways is by using references from family and friends. Ask around and flip through other people's wedding albums to see if you like the wedding photographer's style. Another great place to find a wedding photographer is by asking your ceremony and reception site for a list of preferred vendors. You can also ask some of your other wedding vendors (like your florist or caterer) if they can recommend one. Other ways to find one include the internet, bridal shows and bridal magazines for your local area.  Follow the links on this page for additional help in choosing one.

Once you've narrowed down the list to a few, schedule meetings with each photographer. At each visit, ask to see the photographer's portfolio (or "book.") While looking at the portfolio, pay attention to the type of photography used and if the pictures contain crisp images, good lighting and creative compositions. After looking at the book, you'll easily be able to tell if you like the photographer's style. Sometime during the meeting, ask about the wedding packages he offers and what is included in each package. Also, request a few client references and follow up with each reference about their experience with the photographer.

 wedding photography checklist, wedding photography money saving tips

What do most photography packages include?

Most photographers will have a range of wedding packages from the very basic to the deluxe. Each package will contain a combination of different size photos of your choice.  Wedding packages also generally include photo albums for you or your family.

Included in the price are the actual photographic prints and all of the work that goes into producing those prints like the time that the cameraman spends at your wedding and the film developing.


Ask your photographer he's able to post your photos to the internet for your family and friends to view. Since sharing pictures over the internet has become so popular, it's fairly common to provide this service. Find out if how long your photographer will be in attendance on the wedding day and also how many pictures can be taken. Also ask about your photo negatives. Are you allowed to buy the negatives? If not, how long does the photographer keep the negatives? The control of the negatives will determine when and how you can order additional prints of your wedding photos.

Your photographer, like all of your wedding vendors will be able to do a better job if he knows what you want. To help capture all of the key scenes from your wedding, you can give him a list of the essential photos that you want to be taken. Use our suggestions below and add or subtract to make the list your own.


Wedding Photography Checklist

__ The bride and groom during the ceremony

__ An official portrait of the bride and groom

__ Bride with her mother

__ Bride with her father

__ The entire wedding party

__ Bride with her immediate family

__ Bride and groom with bride's immediate family

__ The groom with his immediate family

__ Bride and groom with groom's immediate family

__ Bride with her brothers and sisters

__ Groom with his brothers and sisters

__ Bride with both parents

__ Groom with both parents

__ Bride and groom with groom's parents

__ Bride and groom with bride's parents

__ Bride and groom together will all parents

__ Groom with his mother

__ Groom with his father

__ Bride and groom with groom's grandparents

__ Bride and groom with bride's grandparents

__ Combination photos of bride and groom with
      attendants

__ Each member of wedding party walking down the
      aisle

__ Bride coming down the aisle

__ Bride's father leaving her at the altar

__ The wedding party at the altar

__ The exchanging of rings

__ The saying of vows

__ The bride and groom's kiss

__ The bride and groom walking down the aisle
      away from the altar

__ Bride getting ready for the wedding

__ Attendants and mothers getting ready for the
     wedding

__ Groom getting ready for the wedding

__ Bride and attendants leaving for the ceremony

__ Bride and groom arriving at the reception

__ Toasts from best man, father of the bride, etc.

__ The cutting of the cake

__ Bride and groom's first dance

__ Bouquet toss

__ Guests dancing at the reception

__ Guests signing guestbook

__ Bride and groom departing the reception