O Em Gee!!! The love of your life just put a ring on it. They “went to Jared”, the kiss began with K, or whatever corny catchphrase you want to use. You hear congratulations daily. You are getting more social media likes than you ever have. You cant stop staring at you new blinged (not a real word) out left hand. You have picked a date and looked at venues. You treat Pinterest like a full-time job. This is also the time you and your future spouse are looking for a wedding photographer.
Hopefully me 😉
You start to Google local wedding photographers, search #weddingphotographer on Instagram, and look at photographers that have shot your venue before. All of a sudden you are overwhelmed when you see all of the options. There are a lot of really great (and not so great) wedding photographers out there and the search can be overwhelming.
Before you freak out and call off the wedding here are a couple of things that can help your search start on the right foot.
Prioritize – How important is photography for you? That will help you allocate your budget properly.
Determine budget but leave wiggle room- I watch Say Yes to the Dress all of the time, and I cant tell you how many times I have seen brides go over their budgets, because they fell in love with a Pnina Tornai two thousand dollars more than they intended on spending. Going in they had every intention of not putting their parents in a position to take out a second mortgage, but intended on sticking to their three thousand dollar budget. But once they saw what a couple more thousand could get them they were willing to budge and prioritize differently.
Determine how you want your wedding to be remembered- If you love candid photos and want pictures that show that, then narrowing it down to those who shoot with a more photojournalist eye will be your best bet. If you want to remember your venue and all of its glory, finding someone who has shot there before, or somewhere like it, may be ideal.
Disclaimer: Realize that things will come up but having a vision will definitely help.
Once you have done that, map out your day, this will help determine how many hours you will want in your package. I start my packages at 6 hours because it is smallest amount you can get the most out of the photography experience.
Here are some suggestions that may help you determine how much coverage you will need
Prioritize what you want covered- If you want those magazine detail shots but really dont care about how your drunk cousin looks 5 drinks in, then I suggest doing 1-2 hours before the ceremony or first look(depending on where everyone is getting ready) and end one hour after dinner is served.
Figure in travel times with buffers- If it says it takes 20 minutes to get to the venue from the hotel double it. Traffic, weather, a zombie apocalypse, and other things happen. Its better to have to more time than not enough.
Have a consultation with photographers you like… We know how long things normally take for us … Ask if you can add time to the day of and how much it will be.
Taken at the Waterview in Monroe CT
Taken at The Marriot in Farmington CT and The Aqua Turf Club
Taken at The Southbridge Hotel, The Mansion at Bald Hill, and St. James Church
I hope this helps you in your search in finding the right package for your day…
Til next time