One of the biggest decisions you can make in the wedding planning process is choosing the right photographer. Memories fade, but pictures last a lifetime, and you definitely want to ensure that the most photographed day of your life is done to perfection. Knowing this, picking the right photographer can sometimes feel like a daunting task. In celebration of World Photography Day, our #PrettyPerfectPartner Obligato Creative Studios has put together a few tips to ensure you get the maximum return on your wedding photography investment:
1 – Plan and hunt ahead
You might have a long list of wedding photographers who you would love to document your wedding story, or maybe you have your heart set on only one. Bottom line – you want to have choices, but you don’t want to be overwhelmed by too many. After reaching out to your top picks, factors like availability and price will immediately help you narrow your list.
2- Meet up with your photographer
I mostly insist an engagement session/meeting with my couples ahead of the day for a number of reasons. Even though you’ve can take some really good selfies with Bae, you certainly want to get comfortable taking professional shots. More so, you kind of give the photographer a highlight of what he should be looking out for on the wedding day – your best poses, your awkward smiles, etc. You can also establish a rapport with your photographer, which will make you feel comfortable leading up to the big day. An engagement shoot is the perfect opportunity to accomplish all of this.
3 -Clear all doubts
I have seen the most wonderful client-vendor relationships go sour because of “I thought you meant…”. From a little mail to a signed contract, it is sometimes best to get clarity, and when in doubt, request for clarifications on gray areas of the service you’re about to get. Establish a firm timeline and expectations from the get go and there won’t be any surprises.
4 -State the “must-gets”
“Hello… I’m looking through my pictures now and cannot seem to find a picture of myself and the family from Scandinavia. I really wanted a shot with them, did you happen to catch any?” Any good photographer will work with you to get a “must have” shot list to ensure that no important moments are missed. Trust us, on the day of, it’s impossible to to remember it all, so establishing this beforehand is the way to go.
5 -Start early & plan well:
I have “helplessly” had a few weddings where “Aunty Joanna” comes to chase everyone out of the hotel because the Minister has ordered the commencement of procession… painfully enough, we weren’t able to shoot some portraits in that stunning Vera Wang gown. So work with your planner to have makeup and styling commence early to ensure you give your photographer some ample time to get those shots before you dash to church.
6- Know the House rules
Hypothetically, no one is allowed to walk within 5 meters of the chancel whenever the priest rings the bell three times during the kiss. To avoid having the ushers throwing out your photographer, inquire of all possible ceremonial location rules and inform your photographer. Where possible, discuss with the officials for possible exclusions. This also extends to invites and special tags to the reception just in case you’re planning this ahead, you might just save the photographer the embarrassment of being bounced.
7- Establish a Relationship
I can’t say how much I enjoy shooting those brides with whom I have broken down those alien vendor/client walls to ensure they feel safe enough to trust me with every perfect and seemingly “un-perfect” moment of their wedding tale. As much as you can, try to chose and get along with that photographer, it makes the process so much better on both sides.
8 -Smile and Have Fun
After all, it’s your wedding! Enjoy every moment of that day and catch all the fun you can. You’ll laugh harder when you see those thrilling memories that will trigger the joyful tears in years to come.
Obligato Studios is a wedding and lifestyle and photography outfit based in Nigeria. Beyond documenting the tiny ‘lil’ bits of your weddings, events and occasions, we capture those unfeigned emotions… illuminating every piece of memory to awaken the emotions that you connect to in years and decades down the line. See more from Obligato on instagram here.