How to choose the right wedding photographer


Who wouldn’t be excited about their marriage? Marriage is the most important and adorable event happening in one’s life.

wedding photographer

It is a beautiful relationship that connects two souls in love and lifetime commitment. Though marriage is a one-day event, photograph freezes the moment and makes us cherish for a lifetime. 

So, if you are planning a wedding, choosing the best wedding photographer also falls under the most important things to do. This module is going to make your job easier by helping you to choose the best wedding photographer.


Tips for choosing the best wedding photographer

Photographers are the ones who capture the moment and save it as a beautiful memory. But the responsibility of the wedding photographer not only stops by capturing the moment but much more than that, which means you have to do careful research and selectiveness regarding personal demeanour, professional skills, artistic style. They are extra important when choosing your wedding photographer.


Look into the portfolio

For any photographer, maintaining the portfolio at its best is most important because the clarity and the details of the photographer’s work can be witnessed in his portfolio. You can find not only his clarity of work but also his styles and skills which will embrace his professional work.

Photographic Exhibitions Committee (PEC) uses twelve elements as their gold standards to measure the grade of the photographs. They are

  • Impact

  • Technical excellence

  • Style

  • Creativity

  • Presentation

  • Composition

  • Colour balance

  • Lighting

  • Center of Interest

  • Subject matter

  • Technique

  • Storytelling

If you are planning to choose the best professional wedding photographer, never fail to consider the twelve standards. Before you could directly search for the best photographers, you will have to fix the wedding photography style of your preference. This will help you choose the photographers skilled in the specific type of photography. There are different photographic styles which make your album more special. Some of them are:

  1. Traditional photography: This is a fixed or conventional photography way where the photographers work from the ‘shot list’ as per the bride and groom’s request. This traditional photography can also be classified under customised photography where the photographers work as per the request.

  2. Photojournalistic: Taking photos of people when they do not pose for the picture is called candid photography. One of the beauties of candid photography is being able to catch someone in the act. It adds life to your photographs. Candid pictures add beauty to the album. These types of images capture genuine moments and tell a story every time you see it. Photographers who shoot well in this type of candid style often have skills of blending into the crowd, but always being where the action is.

  3. Fine art: When a photographer tells you that they are a fine artist, they may mean many hidden things. Sometimes it means that they like to control the scenes as much as possible to create an image that personally inspires them, and this can lead to mixed feelings from the guests who may be used as props to fulfil an artistic vision. Photos may turn out dramatic and gorgeous, although it could mean they are grainier, dreamier, or more muted. If you value creative wedding photography that uses exciting or edgy compositions to showcase your personalities, make sure to find a wedding photographer who proudly shows off the kind of work you like. In the case of wedding photography, choose the best-suited one according to your interest, instead of choosing someone randomly and expecting something that they are not capable of.

  4. Illustrative photography: This kind of photography is a blend of candid photography (photojournalistic) and traditional photography with specific techniques. This type of photography emphasises the composition, lighting, and background of the pictures. The benefit of illustrative photography is that it tends to have the spontaneity of candids when it offers the technical control of portraiture.

  5. Natural light photography: Who wouldn’t like natural beauty? The feel of natural light is warm and eye-catching. The natural light photography uses natural daylight found in a setting, rather than using flashes and other extra lightings. This photography is generally shot outdoors mostly in pre-wedding and post-wedding shoots. For this kind of photography, you must choose a technically skilled photographer who can be able to deal with the lighting challenges. 

Remember that you don’t have to choose one style in particular. Many photographers can blend two or three photography styles well. But if you have a specific interest in a particular manner, then you need to focus on the photographers who specialise in it.

Most of the skilled professional photographers have their portfolio with any one or more of the above-listed style photographs from which you can select according to you and your partners’ preferences. You should also notice the prints that they use to print your photos by viewing any of their previous works.


Personality and Professionalism

If you are looking for a photographer from a more extensive and reputed photo studio, they mostly will have more than one photographer on staff. You might meet a photographer when you tell your expectations, and he may not be the one who captures your pictures on your wedding day unless you specify that in your contract.

Every professional has a different style and personality, especially when it comes to photography. You must make sure that you interview and connect with the one who will be present at your wedding to expect the same result as you wanted. 

Having a compatible wedding photographer on your wedding day plays a significant role in setting your mood right, so make sure to choose the best one.

It is your responsibility to feel more comfortable with the photographer on your wedding day as they are going to shadow your every move the whole day. A professional photographer’s responsibility is to make you feel comfortable.

Many wedding photographers have professional certifications like Wedding and Portrait Photographers International, etc. But these certifications declare their professional competence. You must spend time in finding their professional abilities and skills in person to get the best out of it.


Planning and Pricing

The beauty of a kind and professional photographer lies in how well he is prepared to shoot the best for the wedding couple. This preparation includes a pre-visit to the wedding location and discussing the backdrop and other stuff with the wedding organizers.

The planning part also includes discussion about when to show up how the couple should dress, and what are you expecting from them. Giving them a written material of your expectations is also going to help them in a better understanding of their needs. 

A photographer with excellent photographic skills may also charge up to their mark. So you should always keep your financial situation and photography budget in mind before choosing the photographer. The package range varies according to what you want.

Knowing what you wish to include evaluating and listing of how many albums, photos, and extras you want for yourselves and others. You’ll get what you paid for. So trusting a skilled professional meeting, his demands will never make you regret it. The professional wedding photography is categorised under four categories namely,

  • Budget

  • Moderate

  • Upscale

  • Luxury

Find out and compare what’s included in the package, individual price of the extras, such as special effects. The packages add not only that but also the, 

  • Cost of travel in case if it is outdoor

  • Time spent working

  • The experience level of the photographers

  • Number of photographers shooting

  • Equipment used

  • Amount of post-production work required

In some contacts, the photographers own the rights to the pictures that were taken during the wedding to use them for their promotions, such as posting them on their social media handle, website, blog, in publications or even advertisements.

wedding and romance lightroom presets

Post-production detailing

The wedding pictures look good not only because of the photographic skills but also because of the detailed post-production work. This includes final steps and personal touches, which will manifest the professional’s abilities and skills even better.

It usually takes more time to say, for example about a month or two for post-production detailing. The reason is they expect to deliver a final quality product that is worthy of your time and money. They also provide custom touch-ups and other special requests from the customer mostly free of cost or with a reliably low amount.

The wedding photography editing is in trend now as it makes you stand out from the other amateur photographers. Natural lighting wedding photographs will feature bright and clean editing. Some recent trends in photography editing are

  1. Light, bright and airy photos which will pick good lighting above everything else

  2. Dark and moody type of editing will bring a cinematic touch to your wedding photos.

  3. Matte look editing looks as if a slight hazy filter is placed over the image.

  4. Desaturated editing: This type of editing will mute all the colours in the picture, giving extra brightness to the person.

  5. Black and White editing: The most common type of editing format attracting many people.

Most of the photographers use Wedding Lightroom Presets, to save time in post-production editing. Considering all the above points, choose a professional wedding photographer and cherish your wedding pictures all your life!

About the Author

The Author of the article, Chris Garbacz, is the most recommended Melbourne wedding photographer who specializes in capturing and creating beautiful images on your big day.