This one's a good question that I get all the time: Kelsey, how do I possibly narrow down the possible wedding photographers out there to my perfect world photographer?
Well. Sit down in that chair right there,
and let me show you how it's done.
1. How do you find these people?!
Of course the first impulse you're going to have is to get into the ol' Google machine and spend countless hours surfing through things that aren't helpful. Let me stop you right there. A good source to cut to the chase are local wedding magazines. Seattle Met Bride & Groom, along with most other local bride magazines contains a vendor list that is quite helpful! (and for more than just photography)
2. How do you like their work?
There's no point in going any further with photographers if you don't gel with their style, right? Right. Take a peek at their images. Are they artsy, and that's what you like? Are they gritty, straightforward and in your face? Make sure that you can see YOU in the pictures.
3. What's your budget?
This one can really lock it down for you. Once you've chosen three or four photographers whose style you like, call or email them about their package options. It's helpful knowing how much you'd like to spend on photography before you start this endeavor. If their price list isn't on their website, ask for it. According to the Knot, on average photography takes up about 10% of the overall wedding budget.
4. What do their packages include?
Do they give you all of the photos, or are they going to nickel and dime you for them later? Do they offer prints? Do you even need prints? Another thing to ask is if they offer high resolution (or printable) images. This needs to align with your needs, again. If you've got granny who needs a 16x20 canvas print of you and honey over the fireplace, you'll need a photographer who can take care of that for you. If you're looking for just a few small prints, or purely web sharing images, ask about the cost difference between low and high resolution images. There are lots of great places to get your images printed.
5. LAST BUT NOT LEAST: Can you stand to deal with this person for the most important day of your life?
This person needs to be someone likable. It needs to be someone who makes you laugh and someone you trust with the big ticket items. They need to be someone who has been around the block more than once. Someone you'd just like to be friends with. When I take on wedding clients and I sign that contract, I am promising to be that person for my clients. It's SO important. Get to know them a bit - meet up for coffee, or have a brief Skype session. I find that the best wedding photos come when I've already photographed the couple's engagement session. As you'll see, most of my packages include an engagement session for that very reason. I often offer boudoir sessions to my clients as well to get them comfortable, and to give their soon-to-be husband something to look forward to the day they say "I do."
Dear Potential Bride + Groom Client of Kelsey Lane Photography-
There's nothing more I can say besides I want you to be perfectly happy with your wedding photographer fit, even if it isn't with me. Of course I want you to choose KLP every time, but I can help you find a fit like a glove in no time! We all only want the perfect fit on the perfect day!
The Seattle Wedding Photographer Hoping to Win Your Heart ~Kelsey~