5 Tips For Hiring Your Minnesota Wedding Photographer
While we fully realize that hiring your wedding photographer is one of the things at the top of your wedding planning list, we recommend taking some serious thinking time before throwing down a handful of cash. Most of the tips we have listed below for planning and hiring your Minnesota wedding photographer - or any wedding photographer for that matter, come from our experience learning things the hard way. Although we were married just under 5 years ago, the wedding photography industry has changed tenfold. Things like Facebook business pages, Wordpress websites and Pinterest have transformed the way you can find information about your photographers. So how do you know you are hiring the RIGHT photographer for your big day?
We recommend taking some time and thinking through the following 5 points before making the decision to hire your photographer:
Tip 1. Find a wedding photographer that fits YOUR style.
Does the photographer’s style of work appeal to you? Do you like their final edited images? Do you like the poses or moments that they captured in their portfolio or on their website? We recommend getting in touch with any photographer you are interested in and asking to see a full set of wedding images. This will give you a good idea what their style is for an entire day of wedding coverage. Another way to do this would be to ask that they share a finished wedding album with you. This will give you the confidence that they can capture your day and tell the story the way you want it to be told BEFORE you make a final decision.
Tip 2. Meet your photographer.
While it absolutely makes sense to email a photographer with questions, we highly recommend meeting with them in person. In your in-person meeting, not only should you tell the photographer all about your wedding day, but be prepared to ask them some questions too. These people will be at your side your entire wedding day. You want to be sure you get along with them and want them in all your memories from your big day ☺
Tip 3. Don’t feel rushed.
We found a huge tactic many photographers used on us was to tell us they had other inquiries for the same day and they couldn’t reserve anything without a deposit. This put HUGE stress on us and led us to give money to the first photographer we found. We recommend setting up a few meet-and-greets over coffee with photographers you are interested in. Set them up within a day or two of each other so they are all fresh in your mind. If you are highly interested in one of the first ones you meet with but have other meetings on the calendar in the coming days, ask the photographer if they will hold the date for you for a day or a week. We have no problems holding a date for a couple for 7 days. Wedding photography is a big investment – and should be treated as such.
Tip 4. Ask what is included in your package that’s not listed.
Sure, every photographer says their packages or collections begin at $XXXX. But what does that include? Is that simply wedding day coverage? Do you get prints, proofs or an album with that price or does the photographer expect you to pay extra for those things later? We always recommend including something tangible in whatever collection you purchase. From personal experience and past client experience, we find that if the images aren’t printed in the wedding collection, the odds they will ever get printed are slim. We are photographers and our wedding images are still on a disc collecting dust somewhere. If they’re not going to be displayed for friends and family to see, what’s the point in spending thousands of dollars?
Beyond the images themselves, what else does your photographer offer you? What is unique about what your experience with them will be versus any other photographer?
Tip 5. Sign a contract.
Contracts carry a big negative connotation – they are scary, long and legally binding. Not only do wedding photography contracts protect the photographer but they protect you in a BIG way. The wedding contract should outline all the important points about your agreement – and answer most, if not all of your questions. What happens in an emergency on your end ¬ — or on the photographer’s side? How do you reserve your date? How will you pay and in what amounts? When will you see your images and what can you do with them? All these questions should be answered in a photography contract. If you feel like something might be missing – ask about it. Most likely, your photographer has a good reason as to why it’s not in the contract and probably has plans to address the answer somewhere else in your photography experience.
These are the top things we recommend our prospective clients consider when looking to book their wedding day with us. We always encourage you to shop around and be 100% sure we are the photographer for you!
What other considerations do you feel should be on this list that we missed? Let us know in the comments below!