Wedding preparation is exciting and complete with challenging obstacles. Couples have time-sensitive decisions and investments to secure, from determining the absolute location to agreeing on which vendors to arrange for your wedding day team. These professionals will be part of countless special memories from your wedding day. One of your most important vendor choices is who will capture those powerful moments of your wedding. A friend or relative may own a DSLR camera, however, you should hire a professional photographer to ensure the day is documented properly. Before you book your wedding photographer, schedule an engagement session with your to get a feel of how they operate. This simple guide will help you decide who the perfect engagement and wedding photographer is for you and your future spouse. To help ensure that you will discover an excellent fit when you select your photographer, Grand Lens Photography shares five areas of consideration for you to rate and then compare.
Evaluate a photographer's skill
A photographer's website or portfolio is your window into their styles and skills. While viewing the images, you can evaluate each photograph using the twelve elements: Impact, Technical Excellence, Creativity, Style, Composition, Presentation, Color Balance, Center of Interest, Lighting, Subject Matter, Technique and Story Telling. Every photograph can be graded on all twelve elements, however, you may require simplifying by selecting the essential elements for you and your significant other. Score each photograph and keep track of your highest rated works. Each photographer is only going to display their favorite photos in their portfolio, so when viewing photo galleries, a great question to ask yourself is, ‘How happy would I be if that photo were in my wedding album?’.
You have selected several photographers online and narrowed down your search even further by checking their availability for your wedding date. Now, it is time for an in-person consultation where all of your photography concerns are addressed. If you are looking at hiring a larger photo studio, they most likely have more than one photographer on staff. Unless you specify in your contract, the individual you meet may not be the one capturing your photos. Considering every professional has a different style and personality, you will be best to ensure that you interview and connect with the one who will be present at your wedding. Having a compatible personality with your wedding vendors plays a surprisingly large role in setting the mood for your special day. While there is no personality testing kit that will provide you with a degree of compatibility, you can use your awareness to evaluate and appraise this factor. When you meet each candidate, it is important to be aware of your first impression. Listen to your gut feelings while you estimate how well you mesh together. How comfortable do you feel around them? Do you and your partner trust and get along well with them? Finally, do you feel like you are being sold or do they provide genuine responses?
What items are offered with an engagement session
Once you receive your beautiful engagement photographs, you can order single prints for framing portraits or collages that produce great new home furnishings or gifts for loved ones. Another incredible idea is to create a professional engagement album with your photos. Engagement albums produce beautiful family heirlooms and excellent "thank you" gifts for the parents of the bride or groom. It is a great conversation piece when used as a coffee table book, and you will not need to try and find your old hard drive 10 years down the road to reminisce your beautiful photo session. These are wonderful ways to preserve your precious memories in a timeless, elegant photo collection.
How long will it take to receive the photos
Photo delivery will vary from photographer to photographer. Find out what your photographer's contract says. Your photographer should have a general turnaround time listed in the contract they provided you when scheduling your engagement session. Various photographers provide sneak peeks on the same day and then deliver the rest of the photos a week later. For Engagements/Portraits, anywhere from 1-3 weeks is relatively standard. If it has been two months, we suggest giving the photographer a follow-up call or email. Keep it friendly and just tell them that you are wondering when you can expect your images to be delivered to you.
How will couples use the images
Now that your session is complete and your photographer has delivered your stunning gallery of images, what do you do? First, do not just post your photos to social media and forget about them. You have taken the time to plan and invest in every detail of your engagement session, and the art your photographer creates is meant to be preserved so your grandchildren will be able to see how fabulous their grandparents were in their younger years. Having digital files is great, especially when it makes it easier to share memories with family and friends that live in other parts of the country. Couples also use their engagement photos for their wedding website and "save-the-date" announcements to their potential wedding guests. Adding photos to your Save the Date announcement is a great way to personalize them. For a more traditional version of the "save-the-date" and a great way to make grandma really happy, submit your engagement announcement and favorite photo to your city’s newspaper. (Check with your local paper about any fees.) Additionally, some couples choose to create a slideshow display during their wedding reception to document the history of their relationship.
Engagement photo sessions are a solid approach. They provide an opportunity to get to know your photographer and get insight into their individual photography style. During the engagement session, you build a relationship with your photographer and learn how to communicate better so that you are both ready and comfortable working together once the wedding day arrives. Albeit some couples may not realize this, building trust and confidence with your photographer and having them understand your photography preferences is a crucial aspect of a successful wedding. The preliminary session of an engagement shoot will give you that added level of comfort to help your big day run smoothly and worry-free.
Grand Lens Photography wants to help you ensure your engagement and wedding photos come out amazing. Check out our blog for tips and tricks to help with achieve the best photos!