How to Choose the Right Wedding Photographer For You
Your wedding photos are something you’ll cherish forever, so make sure you find the perfect photographer to take them for you
We’re sorry to break it to you, but weddings don’t last forever. Once the champagne is popped, the confetti has fallen, and you’ve had your honeymoon, it’s done. But that is why we have wedding photo albums! So we can relive those joyous moments whenever we feel like it. Receiving your wedding photography post-nuptials, is one of the most special moments you can experience (the wedding gifts are pretty good too…), and often one of the most emotional. These images of your special day will live on your Instagram feed forever, they’ll grow dusty on your Grandpa’s fireplace, and they’ll be pored over by your kids 20 years from now. So make sure they’re perfect! To do that, you need to find the best wedding photographer in Chicago for you.
But how do you go about choosing the right one? Today we thought we’d share some easy steps you can take to help choose the perfect wedding photographer.
Not the most fun part to start with, but when it comes to weddings it pays to check the prices, otherwise you might get your heart broken. Wedding photographers in Chicago and beyond will all have varying prices, but invariably you get what you pay for. When you start to see big numbers quoted for photography though, remember that your wedding photos are an investment. You’ll never use that stationery again or even wear that dress, but you’ll probably look at your wedding photo album at least once a month.
Your first step should be to look at what you can legitimately spend, and then keep that figure in mind as you search and start to contact people. Many to most photographers will have starting prices on their websites, please do not use this figure as your actual price, it’s just for reference and there will be many other fees that come together to create the actual final quote. Also, please check all the small print for ‘hidden fees’, these can really catch some newly-weds out when they receive their final invoice. These fees may be overtime, a second photographer, rights for printing or a monthly/yearly cost for an online gallery of your wedding album. Make sure your photographer is upfront from the start and shares every little potential cost with you, while you check over all their paperwork with a fine tooth comb!
Are you looking for traditional, modern, reportage? Each wedding photographer in Chicago will have a style that they specialize in, you just need to find the right one for you. That’s the fun part! Look through as many real weddings as you can (even more than you already do) and note down the aspects that you really like from each series of shots, the more you look, the more you’ll notice a pattern emerging. From there you can easily work out which style is to your taste, and you’ll also have a handy roadmap for your chosen photographer to follow.
This person is going to be following you around all day like your Kim K, so you want to make sure you like them! Nothing looks worse in wedding photography than a bride who is distracted by her photographer. Read through their testimonials and get a feel for them, not just from their own website, but on The Knot, WeddingWire, and social media and on forums. Then if you like what you see, and their style matches yours, get in touch.
Meeting your wedding photographer in person or via Zoom is vital in order for you to get a feel for whom they truly are. Do they put you at ease? Do you feel like they understand what you want? If you like their vibe, check if they are available, before you go any further!
Book an Engagement Shoot
This is the true test for your photographer, and a great bit of on-camera experience for you. This may not be an essential thing when booking your wedding photographer in Chicago, but if you have the time and the budget, then it’s certainly worthwhile. You’ll feel so much more comfortable on the day knowing that you’ve experienced being directed by this person, and they made you feel at ease and confident.
Their portfolio should flow, using a recognizable style, with each image as stunning as the next. You want every photo to be consistent in quality and look. You may realize while browsing that you don’t like the way the photographer shoots in low-light, or their style when shooting group photos doesn’t fit yours. So pay attention to the small stuff now, and it will make a big difference further down the line.
We would love to be your perfect wedding photographer in Chicago! Michael and I are obsessed with weddings and love to bring out the very best of our newly-weds, using a fresh modern style and an easy-going approach in our photography and wedding videography. We encourage you to browse our portfolio of past brides and if you feel we are right for you, please do get in touch via our contact page.