Everything You Need to Know About Hiring a Wedding Photographer

Once you have a fixed wedding date, it is now time to secure a wedding photographer who can truly capture the essence of your most memorable day. However, finding a suitable photographer is not as easy as it sounds. This is especially when you have a pool of exciting options to choose from the many Ottawa wedding photographer services.

Some photographers may have a big name in the industry with expertise in bridal portraits. However, others may have impressive portfolios and a flair for taking amazing photos but with little recognition. This makes it tricky to decide which photographer is the perfect fit for you.

Tips for Hiring the Best Wedding Photographer

You cannot overlook the idea of getting the right wedding photographer. To make the right choice, here is what to do:

1. Determine the Type of Wedding Photography You Want. This can be either of these two:

  • Candid Photography: This style of photography captures spontaneous moments and emotions more realistically, requiring skill, experience, planning, and technical knowledge. Candid shots are challenging to take, making them more expensive.
  • Traditional Photography: This style of photography is generally staged and involves the photographer taking control, ensuring no moment or person is missed.

2. Determine the Type of Wedding Videography You Want. Wedding videography can be:

  • Cinematic Videography: This style of videography involves creativity and storytelling in documenting the events, capturing the wedding, its star cast, and surrounding emotions in a 20–40-minute video. It requires specific equipment, cameras, drones, and technical know-how, making it more expensive.
  • Traditional Videography: This style of videography involves less creativity and documents every single minute of the event. The entire wedding function is typically filmed for at least 2-3 hours, requiring a typical video camera and basic equipment to shoot continuously. This type of videography is less costly.

3. Budget for Your Wedding Photography. Determine your total wedding budget and decide on the percentage you are willing to spend on photography. Typically, couples spend between 5-10% of their budget on photography. Know this in advance before searching for a wedding photographer.

4. Establish the Specific Wedding photography Requirements. Estimate the number of guests who will attend alongside your wedding venue and finalize event dates. Additionally, decide whether you want a photographer for all ceremonies or only select ones. You can also decide whether you will book a photographer from the groom's side, the bride's side, or both.

5. How to Find the Right Photographer. Browse through popular wedding photographers' profiles in your city using online wedding planning portals, social media, or wedding albums of friends and family members. Consider their quality of work and the wedding style they specialize in.

Shortlist at least 5-6 photographers whose work you like. Schedule meetings with each photographer to view their portfolio, discuss their work experience, and learn about their pricing and cancellation policies.

Tips for Working with Wedding Photographers

When picking your wedding photographer, here are important tips to apply:

1. Do your research.  Assess if a photographer's style aligns with your needs. This also includes evaluating the quality of their work and checking their reputation in the industry. Most importantly, ensure their prices fit within your budget.

2. Pick the Final Choice. Confirm availability of dates. Ensure you discuss all the details and requirements of your wedding events, including performances and bridal and groom entries. Additionally, share your approximate budget (without specifying the exact amount). However, provide the exact package and deliverables, including edited and raw pictures, album, and delivery timeline.

3. Finalize the Agreement. Once you have picked your wedding photographer, sign a written contract and confirm the timeline of your events and share a list of must-have shots with the photographer. Make an early booking and check with the photographer ten days before the wedding and stay in communication after the event to receive your deliverables on time.

Final Thoughts

Research and shortlist photographers based on their quality of work. Again, understand the market prices for different types of wedding photography. Once you have a sense of market prices, decide if they fit within your budget. However, if prices exceed your budget, consider either re-evaluating your budget or compromising and allocating a maximum amount to your preferred services. Use this guide to assist you in hiring the best wedding photographer.

Photo: Palm Tree Studio