As you start checking items off your wedding to-do list, you'll eventually find yourself searching for a photographer. If you're not sure when you should start, click here to find out! You are probably already following some amazing photographers you love on Instagram, but you should still ask some questions before you seal the deal. Here are 8 questions you should ask a wedding photographer BEFORE booking them.
1. Are you available?
A little obvious, but imagine meeting up and becoming instant best friends only to find out they are NOT AVAILABLE! Cue the sad violin. They will likely ask for your date on the contact form, but sometimes we get just as excited as you and completely forget to ask.
2. Will you be our photographer on our wedding day?
Depending on the company, some have a team of photographers called associates. They usually have a very similar if not the same style of shooting, but the last thing you want is to be surprised when the main photographer isn't even there. It is also important that you get along with them. Your photographer is the one person you are going to spend most of the time on your big day. Even if the main photographer won't be there, ask if you can meet with the associate photographer prior to the big day.
3. Are the images included? How will we receive them?
It might seem silly to ask if the images are included, but some photographers don't include them! Once they answer that question, ask them how you will receive them. We live in a very tech world and online galleries are usually the best way to go, but some photographers might be a bit more old school and deliver a limited number on a cd or something you might not be expecting. Once they answer that question, follow up with...
4. When will we receive our gallery? How long do we have to download them?
It is very common for photographers to share a little preview on social media or a few images on a blog post. It's a great way to get a glimpse of what the gallery is looking like, but will it take 4 weeks for the whole gallery to be ready? Three months? TELL ME!
Another thing, life gets busy! Depending on how long it takes for the photographer to edit, you might be on your honeymoon or moving into a new home when they deliver your gallery. You might not be able to download them right away, so asking how long you have to download is something you shouldn't forget!
5. Do you edit the photos? What does it include?
Some photographers offer what we call color correct. It includes making it brighter, darker, cropping, etc. Don't be afraid to ask them to explain it to you. Some photographers go into more details for a fee. Maybe in a family photo, everyone looks great except for little Kevin who closed his eyes or made a funny face. While others might refer you to someone who can make those edits at a cost.
Look at the example below. The top image is SOOC (straight out of camera) The bottom one has been color corrected, straightened, and I even made a human disappear in the background!
6. How can we book you?
Once you feel comfortable and know in your heart you have found THE ONE (photographer wise) ask what the booking process looks likes. Most importantly, how can you hold your date! Is there a contract? Is a retainer required? Do they offer payments?
7. Do you offer prints?
I encourage everyone and their grandma (especially grandmas) to print out their photos! But before you do that, ask if you have printing rights or if you have to purchase a printing permit separately.
8. What if I lose my pictures?
Accidents happen and we all have that one family member that somehow happens to delete the important things on your computer (looking at you Mom). Ask your photographer how they back up the gallery and for how long. It's good to have peace of mind just in case mayhem happens, you'' know that you can reach out and have the gallery safe and redelivered.
There aren't any right or wrong answers to any of these questions. It all comes down to what feels best for you and your fiancé. Stay tuned for part two: Questions that photographers find unnecessary.