You got engaged, selected a date and found a venue. Now is the time to look for other people to help you have a wonderful wedding. Photography is the cornerstone of your wedding’s memories. The right picture instantly takes you back to the happiest day of your life. Capturing your nuptials the way you envision starts with choosing a New York Wedding Photographer who is professional and experienced.
Here is a steps-by-step guide you can follow to find the best photographer for your wedding. If you have any questions, please let me know… I’m here to help.
After you’ve read this article, go over to see other Tips & Resources for your wedding.
Start Searching Immediately
Hiring a photographer is one of the first things you should do, because the best professional New York Wedding photographers book their schedules a year in advance. If you want outstanding pictures, start searching for your photographer when you have decided on the date. The peak days and high season are Saturdays during the spring and fall as these are dates when many couples get married.
If you will be celebrating an “in-season” wedding, book your Wedding photographer at least six to twelve months in advance.
However, if your plans call for an out-of-season wedding or wedding on a Sunday, there is a good chance your chosen New York wedding photographer is free. Six months will likely give you adequate time to find the photographer of your dreams.
Good New York Wedding Photographers have a reputation of success, and therefore are relatively well known. They should be the easiest to find.
Start your search by asking for recommendations from friends and family who have held weddings prior to your event. Ask if they liked their wedding photographer, and look at their wedding album. People who’ve had positive experiences with their photographer are always happy to share their photographers names with you, and when you meet, you’ll both have an immediate frame of reference from which to proceed.
Additionally, other professionals involved in your wedding day festivities will likely have worked with photographers in the past. Ask for recommendations from your wedding planner, venue manager, caterer, baker, florist or limousine driver.
Visit the Photographer’s Website
Visit each New York wedding photographer’s website. Carefully review his or her portfolio. Try to concentrate on photos and not on website design. Today anyone can get a beautiful template website. Good wedding photographers usually show plenty of their recent work on their blogs – you will save time by pre-qualifying New York wedding photographers who have comprehensive online portfolio for a possible meeting.
Create a list of those New York wedding photographers. Most important is – see if the photographer’s work looks appealing to you, if you can feel the “click”. Determine which photographer will meet your budget as well as your needs. Consider how well they perform in different settings/environments. Think about the tone that you want your photos to express. Are you and your fiancee serious and traditional, or do you prefer a more light-hearted and playful theme to your wedding photographs?
Examine the basics of the pictures-such as color, clarity, exposure, graininess and composition. Then determine the New York wedding photographer’s style; does he/she shoot photos that are adventurous and unique or are they standard and ordinary? This will also help you determine which style you prefer.
Pay attention to the photographer’s ability to capture the emotion of the day. Does it appear that he has the personality to make his subjects comfortable and happy? Or is he/she the type of New York wedding photographer that seemingly takes pictures without much passion.
After narrowing your selection of New York Wedding Photographers down to about three, make appointments to interview the candidates. During the interview, ask to see samples of past work. Likely, the wedding photographer will have two or three wedding albums available for show. Make sure you see at least one album of an entire wedding, from start to finish.
After examining all of the photographer’s work closely, request to see another set of photographs from a recent wedding. This will enable you to see both his best work-from the pre-selected albums-and her average daily work.
Call or email each New York wedding photographer on your list. Schedule a quick phone call or short email will give you a number of key pieces of information, such as the photographer’s availability on your wedding day, type of photography specialties, and a rough idea as to how much your investment with them will be and what you’ll receive for that fee. It will also tell you a bit about the New York wedding photographer’s personality.
Remember, this person will be an integral part of the most important day of your life, so be sure you choose someone you feel good about.
Make appointments with the New York wedding photographers who sound promising so you can view their portfolios and discuss details. These meetings should include both the bride and groom and anyone else who will either be paying for the work or working closely with the New York wedding photographer. Write down all your questions before you meet.
Getting Specific with your Questions
The more questions you ask up front, the more confident and relaxed you’ll feel on and after your wedding day.
If in doubt, ask! And remember, there is no such thing as a dumb question!
Here are some questions you may consider to ask:
- How will we see our pictures?
- Will you help me choose the final pictures?
- How will you make it easy for friends and family to order reprints?
- What is the investment on the various levels of coverage?
- What’s your time frame for preparing the pictures and books?
- How about engagement session?
- How long have you been in business?
- What kind of guarantee comes with my hiring you?
- What’s your philosophy to photographing weddings?
- Will you have a second photographer?
- Do you have travel fees?
- How much is your overtime fee?
- Will you be the one photographing?
- Who will I be working with after the wedding?
- What’s your payment policy?
There is huge number of possible questions you can ask your New York wedding photographer. Most professional New York wedding photographers will provide you with clear explanations about their services prior to any questions even asked.
Many of them have full packages that include certain number of prints, digital files, enlargements, etc., so it is very clear what level of service and final products you should expect.
Our Testimonial Page – New York wedding photographers should have at least 10 reviews to be considered.
Come away from the interview knowing the quality of the New York wedding photographer, his overall style, and if he will adjust his style to your individual taste.
Gauge Their Professionalism
While not all amateur new york wedding photographers are created equal, the best way to ensure you receive a quality wedding album is to hire a seasoned professional with a solid background from which to draw.
During your initial interviews, find out how many weddings the photographer has shot. He/she may have been a professional photographer for 15 years, but only doing weddings for the past year. Remember, Wedding Photography is much different than any other type of Photography.
Along with the number of years he/she has been photographing weddings, ask how many actual weddings he has photographed. This will give you a better idea of how experienced the New York wedding photographer has become. With such experience comes not only the knowledge of how to photograph a wedding, but also how to act during the ceremony and reception. For example, how will he dress and how will he act to your wedding party and guests?
Prepare to Make a Commitment
At this stage, if you’ve taken the time to ask good questions, you’ll know whether this New York wedding photographer is for you. By now you’ve probably spent a good deal of time communicating with your wedding photographer. Keep in mind that photographers are trained professionals and that they deserve to be treated as such. Go to your meeting prepared to leave a deposit to reserve the date. Before you do, however, you may want to assure yourself of a few more last-minute details.
Ask about the New York wedding photographer’s policy for wedding-date changes and what happens if he/she is not available on the alternate date. Ask about their policy for an unforeseen cancellation.
If the wedding photographer is right for you, if the he/she is available then make the commitment and relax; this is undoubtedly one of the best and most intelligent decisions you’ve made in planning your wedding.