Questions you should ask your wedding photographer
Tips and Articles – by Lucas Kraus – 04/05/2018
Planning a wedding is massive. It can take years of preparation, a lot of money and requires bringing together several dozen wedding vendors in perfect harmony to create your big day.
Although we can’t help you in certain areas of wedding planning such as wedding dresses, booking your wedding venue or picking a celebrant, we can highlight some of the questions you should ask your wedding photographer.
How many weddings have they photographed?
Instead of asking a wedding photographer how many years they have been photographing weddings, ask them how many weddings they have photographed. Some wedding photographers may have been photographing weddings for over 15 years, but if they are only doing 5 to 10 weddings a year, that is only around 100 weddings.
Personally, I have been photographing weddings for approximately 8 years, but have been taking on between 50 to 75 bookings per year. That is roughly 500 weddings! See the difference? I know of some photographers who have done in excess of 1000 weddings over their career.
Wedding photographers should be transparent about how many weddings they have photographed, and although it would be nearly impossible for them to give you an exact number, they should be able to give you a rough estimate.
When it comes to wedding photography, experience is key. Experience determines many factors such as how a wedding photographer will price themselves, their skill level and their ability to tackle tricky situations at a wedding.
Viewing entire weddings
A wedding photographers website is their shopfront. Without one, they would be unable to be contacted, unable to advertise to potential clients and unable to show their work. It only makes sense for a photographer to display their best images on their webpage. However, wedding photographers should also display entire weddings they have photographed.
Most wedding photographers are able to take a great photograph under the right conditions i.e. nice lighting and location, but not all wedding photographers can adapt to tricky situations and not so glamour’s locations, such as churches, dimly lit reception halls and night shots.
If a wedding photographer does not display entire weddings on their website, it might be a good idea to ask if you can view entire weddings they have photographed. It is the only way to ensure you will get consistent high quality images from your wedding photographer.
Ask to see their reviews
In todays world, businesses live and die by their reviews. A negative review can be costly to a small business owner and potentially cost them money.
That is why some businesses hide their reviews. Many rating systems such as facebook, google business and easy weddings do not allow business owners to delete negative reviews. Therefore, if a business owner doesn’t want potential clients to see their negative reviews, they will delete the ability to see reviews all together.
When booking vendors for your wedding, make sure you can see their reviews or ratings. If you can’t, ask them to see a list of reviews or recommendations from previous clients. This is a good way to ensure that you are booking the right person for the job. If they are reluctant to show their reviews, they may be trying to hide the fact that they have received some negative ones.
What happens if they are sick?
During the planning process, one of the most common questions you should ask your wedding photographer is what happens if they are sick on the wedding day. This is an important questions which should always be asked. The last thing you want is when your about to walk down the aisle and you realise your wedding photographer has not turned up.
Personally, unless I am on my death bed or a natural disaster occurs, I will be at your wedding. If worst comes to worse, I will do my best to find a suitable replacement. I have several backup photographers that I have known for several years that are able to take my place if need be. I am also apart of several wedding photography groups where I can source another photographer.
Do you get the rights to the photos?
This is probably the most important questions you should ask your photographer. Back in the day, it was common practice for photographers to NOT give clients access to the edited files. Doing this, clients are then obliged to print photographs via the actual company.
These companies may give you rights to the photographs only if you have purchased a certain amount of prints, or they might give you the rights to that particular photo if you have purchased the print.
So, instead of printing your own photograph using a digital file for 25 cents, it would cost you 25 dollars. There are still some wedding photographers around today that go by this business model, especially the bigger studios, however most of us ‘little guys’ like to give value for money and give clients all printing rights to the photographs.
They are after all, your photos, and as we all know, wedding photographers are already expensive without having to purchase additional prints.
When planning your big day, you can’t be to careful. It is essential in a wedding that all vendors come together in a collaborative manner on your big day to ensure it runs smoothly and hassle free. Do your research, investigate different company and ask questions.
These are just some of the questions you should ask your wedding photographer. We will do another blog post in the coming weeks addressing more questions you should ask your wedding photographer It is essential in a wedding that all vendors come together in a collaborative manner on your big day to ensure it runs smoothly and hassle free.