Tuesday, July 10, 2012

Your Photographer Guide

I hope you have noticed the most recent addition to The Golden Isles Bride, a Photographer Page! As I come across more photographers I will of course update the page so check back periodically. I also wanted to post a list of questions to help guide you through your interview process with your potential wedding photographer. With that being said this in no way means you have to take this list with you, but as someone *me* who "clams up" in interviews and also gets nervous making a big decision about spending thousands of dollars it helped walk me through the process. I also think trust is earned, not given and more than likely this is the first time you are meeting this person. So asking more questions helped me build trust; so if your photographer feels interrogated, well maybe they are because it is an interview. But as long as you're nice, patient, and smile, (it always helps :)) you should be able to ask the questions you want without offending. So here we go...
  1. What's your primary style? Or what style do you feel is your best work? Posed and formal, relaxed, photo-journalistic, creative, artistic, candid, traditional?
    1. While you can ask show me your portfolio so I can understand your style? I quite honestly wont know what I'm looking at so being more specific helped me. 
  2. Do you shoot in color or black & white? or both? Do you shoot in digital format that can create both color and black & white versions of the same picture?
  3. What input do you need from me to best photograph my wedding? (PLEASE GOD GIVE THEM A LIST OF YOUR MUST HAVE SHOTS! I've been to a few weddings and the photographer didn't have a list and everyone was just standing around and aimlessly wandering. Efficiency people! We've all been there where we are standing around forever waiting on the couple and family to finish their pictures. Having a list will speed this process up greatly and I'm sure will ease the stress the day of for everyone.)
  4. These are my ideas for portraits (Hence the list.) About how long would you need for them?
  5. Who will be the primary photographer for my wedding? If it's not you could I see their portfolio and meet them?
  6. Tell me about your background in photography. (There are photographers who have shot hundreds of weddings and haven't improved over time. Then there are photographers who have only photographed a handful of weddings, but are fantastic because they get it.)
  7. How many other events will you also photograph that weekend? (Some may think this is an unnecessary question if you trust them, but I felt better after asking. Go with your gut instinct.)
  8. If my wedding doesn't stay on schedule, will you charge extra for going over? 
  9. What kind of equipment will you bring with you? (i.e. tripods, lighting, or other devices) (I wanted a "photo booth" and wanted to know how it would be set up. So you can be more specific, but you get the general idea.)
  10. Do you develop your own film or send it out? 
  11. What are you arrangements if you are unable to make it because of an emergency? Or what if I have an emergency and have to cancel last minute? 
  12. What about retouching? Can you tell me about that process?
  13. Can we purchase a disc/DVD of the images? 
  14. What timeline from booking to wedding day to final delivery of images look like?
  15. Can we have an engagement session so we can get to know each other better?
  16. Tell me about your prints and albums?
  17. What does the contract and payment process look like?
  18. How will we first view our images and select prints?
  19. How will my family and friends view the photos and order prints?
If you have other really good questions please let me know. Thanks!