Which Wedding Photographer Should I Hire?

Ian RamirezVendors, Wedding Planning

Photos on the thumbnail courtesy of Ama by Aisha #AmaByClaudia.

If you’re currently in the midst of wedding planning, what task has been the most challenging? While having so many possibilities at your disposal is certainly a blessing, it can also make several decisions along the way seem a little overwhelming. This is particularly true for a bigger market (such as Houston) where there is no shortage of various vendors. For those that have stopped by our wedding blog before, you likely know that we like to cover plenty of different tips designed to give couples a stress-free wedding planning experience. After all, this should be a process where you enjoy every aspect of it, not one that creates a ton of unnecessary stress!

With that all being said, this week’s blog post is going to largely be centered around a wedding vendor that definitely serves an important role in the grand scheme of things! Your wedding photographer is responsible for capturing all of the memorable moments on your special day and crafting them into a beautiful album that’ll you’ll undoubtedly enjoy reminiscing on. And just as I referenced above, you’ll quickly notice there are plenty of talented wedding photographers to pick from too. So, how do you narrow down the list and ultimately land on the perfect one capable of capturing your big day just right? We’ll answer that question today and provide you with a few tips to help you on this part of the wedding planning journey.

Any referrals?

If you have any friends or family that have recently tied the knot, one of the best places to start in wedding planning is to see if they have any recommendations or referrals on vendors. In regards to photographers, chances are you’ll have already gotten a glimpse at that particular photographer’s work through photos shared on social media. However, you can also check with your friend or family member that worked with the photographer and see how their experience with them was as well. Were they easy to work with (including in the months leading up to your big day, on the wedding day itself and receiving the finished pictures afterwards)? What was their pricing structure like? This piece of information can be incredibly helpful because you’ll know whether or not they align with your budget and will ultimately save you some time if the financials don’t make sense. Long story short, utilizing photographer referrals from friends and family is a great way to get started on this part of the wedding planning process.

What does the post-wedding process look like?

When it comes to the perfect wedding photographer, you’re going to take into account a few different factors. Quality and experience are obviously critical characteristics, as you’ll want someone capable of producing professional photos of your big day. Personality is important because this person is going to be heavily involved in your special day and you don’t want someone that’s going to bring the mood down. Availability and pricing are also no-brainers since they have to fit within your budget and be available on your specific wedding date. 

Yet another to add to that list is the post-wedding experience. Even if you have a honeymoon scheduled right after the wedding, we’re pretty confident that you’ll be extremely excited to check out the completed wedding photos as soon as possible! As a side note, this is a major reason why most wedding photographers provide couples with sneak peeks that they can share on social media before the final album is complete! Given that just about every couple is going to be beyond ready to see the finished product, you want a photographer that isn’t going to make you wait months on end for the photos. With that in mind, it never hurts to ask the photographer beforehand to see what the timeline looks like after a wedding is complete. Furthermore, feel free to take a look at their reviews online, whether that be Google, The Knot, Wedding Wire and so on. You can see if any previous clients had frustrations with a particular photographer, as well as what the positive reviews emphasized. All in all, the post-wedding experience can easily be a cause for plenty of headaches if it’s not handled properly.

Venue experience

In the previous section, we highlighted a few of the main points that will undoubtedly impact whether or not a specific photographer makes sense for your big day. While this definitely featured some of the more noteworthy characteristics, it wasn’t necessarily a comprehensive list. Our next point will provide you with another example of this. When it comes to wedding planning, we often encourage couples to work off a timeline and avoid procrastination when possible. This will help alleviate unneeded stress and ensure everything comes out exactly as you had envisioned. Well, a potential benefit to utilizing a timeline actually is tied to the wedding photographer selection. Let me explain.

In most cases, one of the first tasks you’ll want to complete in the wedding planning process is touring and finalizing your wedding venue. Venues can book up months (or even over a year) in advance. They serve as the backdrop for your big day and as such, are something many couples put a lot of thought into. Lastly, they’ll likely occupy the largest portion of your wedding budget too. To sum it up, it’s a big decision! So…how does this impact your photographer decision. Many professional wedding photographers should have a decent amount of experience working weddings at various venues around town. With that being the case, they’ll have experience coordinating with the venue’s staff and most importantly, know where to be to capture all of the perfect angles. There are two ways to further clarify this point:

Ask your contact/coordinator at the venue – As referenced above, your wedding venue will likely be one of the first decisions you make. With that being the case, you should be able to use them as a resource for future questions leading up to the big day. Don’t hesitate to ask them about recommendations for local photographers!

Check out the venue’s social media pages – On numerous previous blog posts, we’ve highlighted how the wedding industry has truly embraced social media and how this can be very helpful for engaged couples. In terms of wedding venues and photographers, you can take a peek at the venue’s social media pages and see if any of the pictures stand out to you. For one, this will help you craft a list of spots you’ll want to include in your own wedding album, but the venues should also be tagging the individual vendors involved in that wedding. If you see a photography style that you like, then you may want to look further into that particular photographer.

Finalize Your Wedding Venue First!

If there’s one thing that’s for certain, it’s the abundance of fun and exciting activities that fill the wedding planning calendar. As long as you maintain a consistent schedule, we have little doubt that you’ll enjoy every step of the process. Throughout this week’s blog, we provided a handful of tips for narrowing down your wedding photographer selection. Hopefully you found some value here and won’t be overwhelmed by the sheer number of possible options out there. However, before you start searching for photographers, it would likely be a good idea to get your wedding venue finalized first!

Our venue, Madera Estates, is located in Conroe, TX and has hosted hundreds of weddings over the years. If you’re interested in scheduling a free tour and seeing our venue in-person, we would love to show you around. Don’t hesitate to click the link HERE to view our online booking calendar.