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3 top tips on how to choose your wedding photographer

Choosing your photographer for your wedding can be a bit of a minefield. You certainly won’t struggle for choice in an area like Bristol as there are hundreds of photographers all willing to be the one booked to capture your day. Of course, there is a huge variation in style, approach, budget and technical ability.

Any couple who have walked away from their wedding disappointed with their photos will tell you just how important this decision is – just ask a few of your friends!

Aside from your new partner, the photos are the one thing that you get to keep from your wedding day and will help bring back all the emotions from a day packed full of happiness and love. They may even show you things you missed in real life as you were so busy enjoying yourself elsewhere.

Here’s my top 3 things to consider when choosing your photographer:

Photographic style and approach

Take your time to look through a few different photographers portfolios to figure out what you like, and just as importantly, what you dislike. When you’ve found a photographer you like, meet up and ask lots of questions about how they work as they will be a big part of your day. Look through their wedding albums and blog posts to get a wider overview of their style. Ask to view a whole wedding rather than just the best bits. Consider getting recommendations from friends whose wedding photos you’ve admired, but also bear in mind that what suited your best friend may not necessarily suit you.

Price

There’s no denying it, budget will be a big factor and I know I’m slightly biased but with wedding photography you certainly get what you pay for. Think about whether or not you’d be heartbroken if most of your photos all came out dark and blurry or made you look less than your best. Realistically a full day’s coverage will not be offered for under £1,000 if your photographer is a full time professional with the experience to handle any weather, lighting conditions and time restraints.  If you consider photos a priority then I recommend spending as much as your budget can comfortably stretch to. On the other hand, some people are more than happy to live in the moment and just have a few snaps taken during the day by guests. If this is you, perhaps you do not need to spend so much.It’s worth bearing in mind that a high price does not necessarily equate to high quality photos. View lots of portfolios and let your eyes be the judge.

Do you like him/her?

If someone asked you to go and socialise with your photographer for a day, would this be an experience you’d be happy to undertake? If not, then proceed with caution. Your wedding photographer should certainly be someone you get on well with. Do you want someone loud and assertive, taking charge of a situation and bossing around your guests to achieve the end result? Or would you prefer someone who blends into your guests and discreetly captures the action as it unfolds? Does this person make you feel calm and comfortable?

All these things will have an effect on your wedding photos. When these 3 points align you’ve found the perfect photographer for you.

Additionally, when you meet up with a photographer don’t feel pressured into booking on the spot. It’s best to discuss it privately with your partner and then make a decision when you’re both ready.

Many photographers will also offer a complementary pre-wedding photoshoot so you can get used to being photographed without the pressure of the wedding day. It’s a great way to break the ice and to get know your photographer.

I hope this helps you in your decision making process!

About the author

Simon Withyman is a professional wedding and portrait photographer. After 5 years as artistic director of a contemporary portrait studio in the Paintworks area of Bristol he decided to sell up in 2013 to pursue a freelance career and hasn’t looked back since. With a decade’s worth of photographic experience Simon has established a successful reputation within Bristol, Bath & the South West for providing creative, stylish & natural wedding photography.

Simon is one of our fantastic wedding suppliers at our upcoming Winter Wedding Fayre, 26 February 2017 – come and see him there!