Choosing the right wedding photographer: 6 reasons why I might (not) be the best fit
When it comes to finding the right person to photograph your day, I’m sure it hasn’t escaped your notice that there’s, err, rather a lot of us out there! This means it can feel somewhat overwhelming to even start narrowing the search, never mind choosing the right wedding photographer. But don’t worry - I’m here to help!
Choosing the right wedding photographer - where do you begin?!
If you’re reading this, then hopefully I’ve made it through the first round of the selection process (I’d like to thank my mum, and my dad, and everyone who’s ever believed in me…). As things heat up in the second round, I thought I’d try and help you with your decision in choosing the right wedding photographer, by telling you why I might not be the best fit for you and your wedding.
Yep, you read that right - why I might not be. Don’t get me wrong - I may well be the perfect person for the job, and in fact I hope that I am, because I’d be bloody honoured to capture your day! But as a wedding photographer, my speciality is laidback, personality-filled celebrations, and this means that my zone of genius - and therefore my best work - is in pretence-free weddings with down-to-earth humans.
The reason I’m telling you this is because the most important answer to the question ‘What should I look for when choosing a photographer?’ is: someone who’s a good fit with what you want. With this in mind, it’s fundamental to me that you love your wedding photos, so if the below doesn’t sound like what you want, then that’s totally ok! There’s so many brilliant photographers in this industry, I know you’ll find your perfect fit.
Questions to ask your wedding photographer
A really good approach to choosing the right wedding photographer is to ask them questions. Of course, making sure you like their photos is really important too, but there are a number of questions to ask your wedding photographer which are really useful, which I’ve written about, take a look. At the same time, there are some great questions to ask yourself too: like what do you want from the day and your photos? Does that fit with the photographer’s vibe?
Am I the right photographer for you?
I might not be the best fit for you if…
1. You want to look like you’ve just stepped out of the cover of Vogue in every photo
As the trendsetter you are, I don’t doubt you’ll rock your wedding the way you want. And if they’re looking for a new perfect face, I’d be right on the phone to Edward Enninful recommending you for the next issue! But my heart lies in capturing all the little moments of your day ninja-style, and capturing your favourite people being themselves and celebrating with you. This means that rather than hairspraying you to within an inch of your life and shouting stressily about lighting every 10 seconds, I’ll be capturing the raw emotions and the unique moments as they unfold.
2. You only want part of your day photographed
Your photographs are there to tell so much more than the events of the day. Instead, your photographs are there to take you back to exactly how you felt at that moment - the energy and emotion that was coursing through the room, and you, at the time. I pride myself on doing this by getting to know you and your people, covering the whole day so that I can fully and totally immortalise it for you in all of its glory. From getting ready in the morning to getting down on the dancefloor, I’ll be there (and this is why choosing the right wedding photographer is such an important choice - because they’re with you practically all day!)
3. You’ll be operating in a zone of high stress on your wedding day, and don’t believe you will enjoy it
When you’re asking yourself ‘What should I look for when choosing a photographer?’, you’re probably focussed on the photography style, but the right personality match is super important too. I’ve been told that I’m not the typical (read: fun-sucking!) photographer that most people dread meeting when they first set out choosing the right wedding photographer. I’ve also been told I’m a really calm presence to have around on the day, even - and perhaps especially - when things aren’t quite going to plan. This doesn’t mean I’m so laidback I don’t do anything but that I care about people and want to help them have the best experience possible. In fact, I see it as part of my job to ensure you enjoy your wedding day, because that’s what it’s all about!
4. You want someone to direct every pose
There’s a difference between using an artistic eye to perfectly frame and light what’s naturally unfolding, and manipulating what’s happening to try and make it perfect. I’m definitely a fan of the former: stepping back and moving unobtrusively throughout the day, so that I can capture all the raw emotion and real joy as it happens. Though I will of course direct the family portraits during the day, and will give helpful guidance during portraits sessions, for the most part I’m there to document, not dictate.
5. Cheesy photos are your jam
Look, I love cheese. (And, for that matter, jam.) But I don’t include it in my wedding photos (unless, of course, you’ve got cheese instead of cake!) because it’s a surefire way to make you feel extremely awkward on the day. Then, when you get the photos back, instead of thinking “god, that was such a happy moment!” you end up thinking “why do I look terrified? Oh yes…I kind of was!”
6. You’re happy to be treated as a number
You are many things, but Jan Valjean is not one of them. You will never be a number on a spreadsheet or just a date in a calendar to me; you’ll be the real, brilliant beating heart humans that you are! I get to know each and every one of my clients as it helps me build a picture of who you are, what’s important to you, and how you communicate, as this all helps me take photos that are a true reflection of you and your relationship.
So, there you have it! 6 reasons that I might not be the wedding photographer for you…
…or, if you look at it a different way - 6 reasons that I might be the perfect wedding photographer for you. It’s this kind of alternative approach that I love to take with my wedding photography. If you feel like you’ve got a better idea of an answer to the question ‘What should I look for when choosing a photographer?’ - and that answer is me! - then I would love to hear from you. (And if you’d like to know anything else, here’s that link again to the questions to ask a wedding photographer - if I haven’t answered any of them or you’d like to know more, then please do give me a shout!)