Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Wedding Season

I just wanted to share a few tips I wish I had known when I was planning my wedding.

Even budget brides don’t have to compromise on everything.  You may have a certain budget in mind when it comes to every detail, but that doesn’t mean you have to sacrifice everything.  For example, when it comes to your photographer - don’t feel like you need to take the first one that you find who meets your budget.  Your wedding is a BIG DAY.  You want to have someone that you feel comfortable with there to capture the memories. 

I highly recommend you meet your photographer prior to contracting with them to shoot your wedding.  Most photographers offer engagement sessions for a great price.  TAKE ADVANTAGE OF THAT!!!  If you and your fiancé spend the day with a photographer before your wedding, you and your photographer will have a better idea of how to work together when the big day comes around.  And don’t forget – if you don’t click with your photographer at your engagement session – DON’T HAVE THEM SHOOT THE WEDDING.  You are in charge of your wedding – take ownership of it and find someone that works for you.  I didn’t meet, or really talk to, my wedding photographer before my wedding.  We walked away with a few great pictures and several decent pictures, but I am a strong believer that if we have met with him before hand, I would have either a) realized that we didn’t quite click and I would have picked someone else or b) we would have figured out how to work together.  We didn’t set expectations before our wedding – and I think that is key.  Have a discussion with your photographer to figure out when you want formals taken, what kind of portraits you want, and what your expectation of that commonly used “photojournalistic” style really is. 

I would also recommend finding someone who won’t charge you based on hours.  Really, trust me here, the last thing you want to worry about on your wedding day is whether the photographer is going to be around when you really need it.  You don’t want to worry about whether you can get portraits done before the wedding, but still have enough photographer time at the reception to catch all those candid moments you really don’t want to miss out on. 

I think every couple can find the perfect photographer for them, no matter what their budget is.  Now, you might not be able to find an amazing photographer like my idol Jasmine Star – so I guess you will have to compromise….but you can still don’t have to settle.  (Seriously though – she is a.m.a.z.i.n.g.  someday I hope to be just like her) Do your research….and no, looking at a website isn’t research.  Talk to your photographer.  Set up an engagement session or a consultation.  Find out if you really trust that person to capture one of the biggest moments in your life.

Now here is my shameless plug:

I have a passion for weddings…and a passion for photography….and a passion for people.  I want to help document those little moments for a couple to cherish forever.  I’ve responded to several Craigslist ads of people wanting to find a budget, amateur, or student photographer to photograph their wedding.  My BIGGEST FEAR is that those people respond to (and commit to) one of the first people to get back to them and don’t find the person who will really meet their needs.   Do your research.  Be patient. BE PICKY.  You don’t have to pick me, you don’t have to contact me - but do yourself a favor and do your research.     

If you do contact me – here is what we might be able to work out for a very reasonable price:

1.  A free engagement session (at a mutually agreed upon location and on a mutually agreed upon date) to make sure that we can be a match on your wedding day.

2.  A CD of all final/processed images from the day.  These will not be ALL the images from the wedding, as I expect to shoot close to 1000 images that day, but will be the best selection, making sure to cover all those important moments and details.

3.  Unlimited time on the day of the wedding.  I want to make sure we capture every important moment – from getting ready with the girls to rushing off from the reception with your new spouse.

okay – rant over.  thanks for listening (if you made it this far!)

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