Spending extra money to book a professional may feel like an unnecessary expense, but in 10 years when you're celebrating your “I do’s,” the memories will be shared through photographs and videos from your big day.
Hiring someone you trust that shoots a timeless style you love is important. Here are a few things to consider when you look for your wedding photographer/videographer.
Local photographer and videographer Ryan Becker (R.Becker Creative) says, “I always tell brides that, unlike other types of photography, there are no second takes with your wedding photos. Having someone who understands posing, lighting, and composition while telling a story is more than a fancy camera.”
One thing to remember is that you aren’t looking for just any professional, you are looking for a professional wedding photographer. “Wedding photographers are equipped to handle any unique lighting settings. We are often dealt less than ideal lighting, and we need to be able to make great decisions quickly. We have to think outside of the box to counteract the lighting we’re handed,” Alisha Barry (Chutin Flicks) says. She says it’s a good idea to ask your photographer about what style they shoot. "Natural light" is a popular answer, but there is a misconception over the marketing of natural light. If your photographer is only familiar with natural lighting, the reception photos might end up being of poor quality. "I believe that wedding photographers need to have knowledge and experience with both natural light and with flashes and strobes," Alisha explains. "For instance, I am primarily a natural light photographer but I don't market myself as one because if added light is needed, I will use a flash or strobe so I'm not compromising the quality of the photo."
Schedules & Times
Ask your photographer about scheduling the events during the day, too. A lot of professional wedding photographers will offer or may even require you to let them make a custom event schedule. This allows your photographer to capture the best quality images at the best times. Your photographer can also go to your rehearsal dinner if that’s what you desire, or make a custom schedule that will allow for the best photos to be taken at the best times.
View our wedding photo checklist.
Studies show you should plan to allocate 18% of your wedding budget toward photography and/or videography. Professionals charge anywhere from $1,100 to more than $3,000; the average hovers around $2,000. Each photographer offers a variety of packages, which impacts costs. One package might offer a free engagement session if you book them for full-day wedding coverage. Another could offer unlimited edited photos versus an online gallery where you can choose a certain number of free images but must purchase any additional ones. There are a lot of factors that go into deciding which professional to hire. Experience and credentials are additional factors to look into before selecting a photographer.
We get trying to save every penny when it comes to budgeting for a wedding, but don’t cut corners on your photographer. Popular alternatives like family members, friends, or distant relations can lead to disaster. A professional is committed by a legal contract to you and your spouse. Friends or family can have scheduling conflicts and back out at the last minute, leaving you without a photographer. Remember that you are getting what you pay for; if you hire someone who is just starting out and is priced cheaply, be wary of the quality you might receive in return.
Besides, don’t you want your friends and family there to relax and enjoy the celebrations?
Make Sure You Click
When browsing for a photographer is to choose somebody you are comfortable with. Not just their style, but someone who is genuinely comfortable to be around. Throughout the different events of the day, you will be sharing intimate moments with your photographer. “Make sure you click; this is someone you will be working with for maybe a year or more,” Alisha adds.
View our list of preferred Black Hills Photographers.