here are some questions to ask your potential wedding photographer
As we have been in the industry a long time, we have put together a list of possible questions you could ask other photographers that you will be meeting to help ensure that you book a photographer that is professional, experienced and perfect for you.
Please note that this information just gives you some details about questions that you could ask a potential wedding photographer, it doesn’t contain questions such as, do you have back up equipment, what happens if you are ill on the wedding day, do you have insurance, public liability etc as these should all be covered by a professional photographer and provided in their contract, the basics of all questions and professional business practice.
Q1. Is the photographer a member of a Professional Photography Governing Body?
Examples of professional bodies are - SWPP, MPA or The Guild.
Q2. Ask the photographer to show you a few physical albums when you meet.
This is VERY IMPORTANT so you can see how their images print if you are thinking of having downloads or a USB from the photographer.
Q3. WHAT IS THEIR STYLE OF WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY?
(have a look at their online gallery, iPad Pro slideshow & physical wedding albums to see the style when you meet).
A. TRADITIONAL- photographs are taken mainly at eye level with a mix of set up and formal shots.
B. FORMAL- mainly posed groups.
C. DOCUMENTARY- natural unobtrusive & relaxed, telling the story of your wedding day as it unfolds.
D. CHOREOGRAPHED OR SET UP SHOTS- i.e jumping, skipping across the grass, bouquets in front of faces, holding smoke bombs or guests asked to pull silly faces or do star jumps.
E. CREATIVE-using different methods with light/angles/posing & camera skills to create different effects.
F. A BLEND of the different styles above.
Q4. What approach do they have to the couples wedding day?
A. Relaxed, unobtrusive and friendly - so you and your guests can feel at ease.
B. Expressive, chatting to everyone, makes guests visually aware that they are in the room?
Q5 Are they a full-time Professional Photography Company & is this their sole income?
(not second shooting or weekend photography with another job in the week)? This is really important to know as seen on point 8.
Q6. How many years have they been a Professional full-time Photographer (their sole income)?
We recommend choosing someone who has been full-time for more than 2 years.
Q7. Do they have other people employed in their full-time company?
Q8. Why choose a full-time photography company?
If the photographer you are meeting has another income/job in the week, do their prices reflect this (THIS IS VERY IMPORTANT)?
A weekend only photographer with another job in the week is unable to dedicate and commit the same amount of time and effort that a Full-Time Professional Photography Company will. Most weekend only/recreational photographers offer their pricing at approximately around 50% less in price as they have other employment as their main income so are not able to put the same amount of time and energy into your wedding journey/production or have the same expertise.
The average cost for booking a full-time wedding photography Company in the UK for your wedding day (not one that has a week job also) was approx £1500 in 2015 in 2016/2017 it was around £1500 for the Midlands area plus any extras I.e a second shooter. If your budget for photography is lower you could try a weekend photographer who also has a job in the week who's prices will normally be around 50% lower.
Q9. How many weddings have the photographer shot independently?
(through their own business, not second shooting or associate shooting/working for someone else)
Q10. Has their work been featured on top wedding industry blogs or featured in magazines?
Q11. Has the photographer shot at the venue before?
(not essential), if not are they willing to visit it prior to the wedding or early on the morning of the wedding if it is a destination wedding?
Is the photographer friendly, do you feel comfortable with them on the meeting, do your personalities gel & are they good at communicating and working with different types of people/guests/suppliers etc?
Q12. How long is the photographer going to be with you on your wedding day?
It is always professional to give a fixed amount of hours that you will get up until so you aren’t disappointed if they arrive late or leave early? Some photographers will quote all day and evening coverage but may leave straight after your first dance. It’s always best to get a fixed amount of hours up until, i.e 8 hours coverage etc
Q13. How many images do you receive?
Ask for a brochure/price list
Q14. What format do you receive your images, in digital downloads, USB or album?
Ask for a brochure/price list.
Q15. Is travel included?
Q16. What if it rains/snows?
Q17. Does the photographer have testimonials?
Q18. How long is it until you receive your finished product?
Q19. If the photographer you have chosen is using a second shooter, are they allowing the second shooter to use the images to promote their company also?
If so where are they allowing the second shooter to use your images?
There are lots of private wedding photographer online chat forums/groups where images are shown & commented on, some are more professional than others, please be aware of this.
We personally have a no image usage contract for second shooters in place.
If you have chosen a company offering a Photo Booth as an extra, ask if it is an actual photo booth you are receiving and not a backdrop with props?
Photo Booths and other options new to the market are costed at a very good price now so it is really worth checking if it is a backdrop or an actual booth you are receiving?
Q20. Do they have an office you can meet them at, day or evening?
We genuinely hope these questions are of help to you as there are so many photographers to choose from and these questions should help you find the right photographer for you at the correct pricing and experience level.
We always recommend meeting a few photographers first and asking a few of these important questions at your consultation.
Happy Wedding Photographer Hunting :)