I have been photographing weddings for nearly 15 years and I have had couples ask literally every question in the book, ranging from “What will you wear to our wedding?” to “Can we see all of the unedited photos?” to “What was your wedding like?” I love this; I want couples to ask me lots of questions! Here are what I think are the five most important questions you should ask any prospective wedding photographer (along with my answers, when I can).
For more answers to questions, pop over to my page of FAQ’s or shoot me an email!
1. Are you available on our date? This is the most important question you must ask! And you should ask it first, since if the answer is “no” it really ends the conversation!
2. How much do you cost? This is by far the most asked question that photographers receive. Some photographers may not be able to give you a set number right off the bat. Many wedding photographers create customized packages based on how many hours of coverage you want, whether you’re asking for one or two photographers, if you’d like an album, if you’d like an engagement session, how far away the wedding is, etc. Unlike many wedding photographers, I offer transparent pricing on my website with several options for packages, but I let couples know that there is flexibility in there, too. That’s why we really need to have a conversation about what you’re looking for and how I can best be of service.
3. What is your approach to wedding photography? Even though I think that a wedding photographer’s approach should be clear from her website, marketing materials, and portfolio of work, I still think this is a good question to ask. It’s one of those questions that gets at the photographer’s motivation, personality, and values. One of my core values is that I want my clients to have a stress-free and fun experience during their wedding day so that they look and feel comfortable in front of the camera. My approach reflects that value. I not only document the festivities, but I help my clients know what to expect and how to manage the day so that they can feel relaxed and just have fun. I call myself a “wedding navigator” because I really stand by my clients and help them navigate their entire day.
4. Have you ever shot a wedding at X venue before? My opinion is that the answer to this question doesn’t really matter because you’re hiring a professional photographer who has worked at countless venues, knows how to manage different lighting situations, and can problem solve on the fly. However, you chose your venue for its uniqueness, beauty, and nuance, so you want a photographer who understands all of those things. If I haven’t been to your venue before, I will pore over images of it on the Internet so that I can understand the flow and floor plan, and arrange a site visit if necessary. I have a list of some of my favorite venues here but it’s in no way exhaustive of all the places I have been!
5. Do you charge for travel? Given that your photographer will be with you most of your wedding day (potentially in two or three different places) and given that your wedding may not end until close to midnight, knowing about travel fees and reimbursements is important. Sometimes we need hotel rooms the night before or the night of a wedding, sometimes we need compensation for the mileage, sometimes (in the case of weddings on Martha’s Vineyard or Nantucket) we need ferry tickets. Be aware that the answer will likely be “it depends…” and then be open to having this conversation.