So… congratulations are in order and you are beginning to plan for your wedding. Here are some basic tips to help you select the RIGHT wedding photographer for your important day.

You may not know how to put your photography style preference into words but a little research will go a long way.  I suggest you begin by collecting images in magazines or create a Pinterest board and store the wedding pictures that speak to your heart.  Once you have identified a look that appeals to you, it will be easier for you to match your concept with a photographer and communicate the types of images you want for your wedding.

Search the web for photographers. Review their online wedding galleries and find those that match your style.  Look for a gallery that showcases one wedding from beginning to end verses a collection of the photographer’s favorites. That way you see their consistency for an entire event verses some lucky good shots.  You might also want to check out what others say about them.

I suggest you schedule to meet your favorite three photographers.  Since you have already established that you like their style, use this time to determine their level of professionalism.  Do they respond promptly to your calls?  Are they dependable?  Are you comfortable being around this person?  Remember, they will be by your side for 8+ hours on your wedding day.  Also, if you are going to want a wedding album, take a look at their album samples to make sure they offer something that you absolutely love.

Tell them about your wedding day plans and help them see your vision.  This is where an experienced photographer will add value to your day.  They will help establish a realistic timeline to support the specific photos that you want relevant to appropriate lighting conditions, sunset and venue restrictions.  This timeline will become valuable information when you begin coordinating hair, make-up, and delivery of your flowers.  Even if you plan to hire an Event Planner, the photographer’s timeline is key for success of the wedding day operation.

Photographers price themselves based on experience and the competitive market.  Remember, you get what you pay for.  If photography is important to you, plan to make it a significant part of your budget.  When the big day is over, the quality of the pictures will be the one thing you have left to memorialize this precious event.

Then... go for it. You did the research. Now trust your gut.