You’re ENGAGED!!! Congratulations!! If you’re anything like I was, you are so excited to jump into wedding planning!! For me, and most of the couples I talk with, the first vendor’s to book for your wedding are your Venue, Photographer, and DJ. And then of course you can work on the fun details like florals, your dress, etc. All of these choices are going to impact the overall vibe of your day, and it’s important to pick the right people so that you create your wedding day dream team!! As a wedding photographer, I’ve chatted with many couples throughout their wedding planning process, and I wanted to share some tips for those of you who are at the very beginning! (Oh and real quick!! If you’d like a copy of my preferred vendor list, click HERE!!)
- Figure out the style of photography you love – My clients choose me because they’re looking for their wedding day to be capture in a photojournalistic way. They want all of the authentic moments of the day are captured as they happen. They also want to be guided through the portrait portion of their day in a way that makes them feel and look comfortable in front of my camera. They’re looking for timeless images that showcase their love and connection in a genuine way. That is what I do! That is MY style of photographing a wedding day. But there are numerous other styles and ways to look at wedding photography. Do the research ahead of time to find out what it is you’re looking for, and then search (yay Google & Instagram!) for a style that fits you as a couple! Instagram is a great way to search for photography styles that you love. Search hashtags like #buffaloweddingphotographer or #wnyweddingphotography to find images and photographers that catch your eye.
- Ask for referrals – Once you decide what type of photography you love, ask friends and family for referrals! There is a magnitude of amazing wedding photographers in Buffalo, NY (and beyond!), but a great wedding photographer is so much more than beautiful photographs. You want to make sure you’re choosing a photographer who will provide you with an amazing overall experience from the beginning to end! And this is where word of mouth really comes into play! Another great source of referrals is other wedding vendors. The wedding industry is a tight knit community and your Venue, DJ or Florist is sure to have suggestions for other vendors.
- Review their work – When you’ve begun to narrow down your top choices for your wedding photographer, review their portfolio. Make sure to look through multiple weddings and focus on wedding days that have a similar feel to what you’re going for! Don’t hesitate to reach out to the photographer and ask for examples of work that match the overall vibe of your day.
- Make a connection – I feel like this is the most important part of choosing a wedding photographer! Having a good connection with the photographer is KEY. This person will not only be preserving one of the most important days of your life, they will also be with you throughout your entire wedding day. A great place to start is on the About Me section of the photographers website, and even on their social media outlets, like Instagram & Facebook. These are all great ways to hear the voice of the person behind the photos and to begin to see if you feel a connection with them, not only as an artist, but on a personal level. I love to meet with couples to show them tangible photographs and albums, and to make sure that we connect. Not only should this be top priority to the couple, but as a photographer, it is imperative that I mesh with my couples. My goal is not to work with every client, my goal is to work with clients who I CONNECT with, because that is how I’m able to create images that capture a couple in an authentic and personalized way.
- Talk details & ask questions – During your meeting with your potential wedding photographer, make sure to ask any questions you might have. I always go over the details of what it’s like to work with me when I meet with my couples. It’s important to me to really guide my couple’s through each step of the process so that they have the most wonderful overall experience. Key topics to discuss are the flow and timelines of the wedding day, and how that pertains to your photography. As well as booking details, the importance of an engagement session, your first look, and the final delivery of images etc.
I hope this helps you when choosing the perfect wedding photographer for you!!! Above all, I believe wedding planning should be FUN!! I’d love to share with you my preferred vendor guide!! This is a guide that I share with all of my brides and grooms!! Just a little something to help with planning the big day!! You can get a copy HERE!