How to get the best wedding photos
Looking to get the most out of your wedding photography? These are the top tips to get the wedding photos you want. It’s important that your big day is captured exactly how you want it. After all, you only have one wedding. These are the best ways to work with your photographer to ensure that you have everything you need for perfect wedding photos.
Before the Wedding
Do Your Research
Take the time to research the photographers in your area. Look at their portfolios and their social media. See what kind of presence they have on wedding websites like The Knot and WeddingWire. Make sure to double-check for reviews on these sites, Facebook or Yelp.
Important to consider: The number of followers a photographer has on social media does not matter. It’s nice when photographers have lots of followers on Instagram, but they are not proving the quality of their work, they’re proving their marketing skills. Double check the photographer’s full portfolio. Make sure their style is the right fit for you.
Connect with the Photographer
When working with someone who’s going to shoot such a personal event, it’s important that you build a connection prior to the day. Set up a coffee, a video chat, or a call with your photographer. Ensure that you have good vibes with each other. The photographer is trying their best to serve you on your big day, and that means comfortability on both sides. The more personable and the deeper the connection, the more likely it is that they’re going to get those authentic shots that you’re looking for. Sometimes a photographer might have beautiful work, but they personality may not be a perfect fit for what you need.
Create a Mood Board
Have you seen some wedding shots online that you absolutely want to recreate yourself? Put them on a mood board. The best way to get the photographer to understand exactly what you want is by showing them. If there’s a certain feeling, certain aesthetic, or something else that you’d like to achieve, the best way to go about it is creating a mood board. Pinterest is a good tool for this, and there’s an endless amount of wedding inspiration on there.
Create a Shot List
Create a list of shots for the photographer to help them during the day. There are standard shots that are photographers typically will get at a wedding, but if you absolutely need a shot of great aunt Dorothy, or a certain family member or friend, make sure that you’ve put it on the shot list. Put together your absolute musts so that nothing gets missed on your big day.
Do an Engagement Shoot
A good way to warm up with your photographer and get to know each other is by doing an engagement shoot. Engagement shoots are almost a practice run for your wedding portraits. You can use these photos to share your engagement with a bigger audience, share the wedding date with your guests, use them on your wedding website, and simply to cherish the memory of your engagement.
On the Wedding Day
Ask Family to Stay Out of the Way
One of the most complicated things for an event photographer in this day and age is the invention of the smartphone. They are a blessing and a curse. It’s wonderful that the bride and groom’s family members can capture intimate, personal moments— however, sometimes their captures may interfere with the photographer’s shot. Let your family members know to stay out of the way of the photographer on your wedding day for smooth sailing. Your photographer is the one you’ve enlisted to make sure that those moments are captured forever.
If Something is Off, Communicate
If something feels off between you and the photographer on the wedding day, communicate with them. Maybe the second shooter isn’t working as expected, or not capturing the little details. Let your photographer know what your concerns are on the day of, so you don’t have to worry after the fact.
Focus on the Good
It’s your wedding day! Don’t focus too much on the camera in front of you. Enjoy yourself, relax and have fun! The less stress you’re going through, the more comfortable and natural the photos will be. Focus on the fact that you have planned this wonderful occasion with the love of your life.
After the Wedding
Wait for the Photos You Paid For
It may be tempting to just start using the photos that your friends took on your wedding day, but try to wait for the photos that you paid for. Usually photographers will provide sneak peaks shortly after the wedding, so you can start sharing your happy day with family and friends on social media. Ensure that you put the quality photography that you worked hard to have out there, rather than taking away the big moment with quick snaps from friends.
What if the Photos Don’t Look Right?
If something seems off about your photos when you receive them from your photographer, let them know. Sometimes it might just take a little bit of different color editing to get to the photos you envisioned. Make sure you are honest about how you feel about the images. You can’t hold another event, but you can try to work together with what you have.
Help a Bride Out: Review the Photographer
Help out future brides who are looking to capture their special day. Leave a review for the photographer and be honest about how your experience with them went. Many photographers have reviews available on Yelp, WeddingWire, The Knot and Facebook. It’s super helpful to other brides when they’re shopping around for photographers as well.
Got any tips?
Share your advice for communicating with wedding photographers, or share your experiences with wedding photography. Drop them in the comment section below.