Now that the date is fixed & you’ve found the man of your dreams, it’s time you find someone who captures the most memorable day of your life in its truest essence i.e. a great wedding photographer! Finding a suitable wedding photographer is easier said than done. Especially when you have a pool of exciting options available at your disposal, it gets difficult to pick just one. While there will be one who has a big name in the industry and expertise in bridal portraits, there’ll be others who have little recognition yet have such impressive portfolios & a flair for clicking amazing photos. Now the trickiest part is how do you decide who is the perfect one for you?
Well, that’s what we’re here for! To help you know how to hire the best wedding photographer for yourself, we’ve put up a complete wedding photographer hiring guide. Scroll through and make the most of it!
Candid photography is more spontaneous and less posey.
It tends to capture the people and emotions in a much more realistic way.
This type of photography requires more skill, experience, planning and technical know-how.
Candid shots are hard to shoot and consequently cost a tad bit more.
Traditional photography is generally staged (posey).
It involves the photographer taking over the whole and sole charge.
It tends to capture a large part of the wedding, ensuring no moment or person is missed.
Such shots cost less.
The idea behind cinematic videography is quite similar to candid photography.
It involves more creativity & storytelling in documenting the events.
It tends to capture the wedding, it's star cast (you & important people) and surrounding emotions in a 20-40 minute video.
This type of videography requires specific equipment, cameras, drones and technical knowhow.
It is a costly affair.
Traditional Videography is one of the oldest forms of videography.
It involves less creativity besides documenting every single minute of the event.
In the case of traditional videography, the entire wedding function is filmed for at least 2-3 hours.
This type of videography requires a typical video camera and some basic equipment to shoot continuously
A traditional video costs less.
Know your total wedding budget.
Chalk out an approximate percentage of the total budget you’re willing to invest in wedding photography
(Usually, couples spend 5-10% of the total budget on wedding photography)
Do elaborate research and shortlist a few photographers you like (on the basis of their quality of work)
Know the market prices
(Just FYI: On average, photographers charge Rs. 15000 for Candid Photography, Rs. 18000 for Cinematic Photography, Rs. 9,000 for Traditional Photography, Rs. 10,800 for Traditional Videography, Rs. 18,000 for Pre-wedding, Rs.10,800 for Wedding Album per day)
Note: The prices and quality of work may vary from photographer to photographer.
Once you know the market prices, you’ll have a clear idea about whether they fall within your set budget or exceed it.
In case the prices fall within or near your set budget, you can consider your original budget as the final budget.
However, if the market prices exceed the budget you have set, you can either re-evaluate the budget or make some compromises & allocate a maximum amount of it to your favoured services.
(For instance, if you’re an ardent lover of candid photography and have a total of Rs. 1 lakh budget for wedding photography for a two-day event, you can allocate the maximum funds to candid photography and keep the remaining amount for other services.)
Have a defined wedding photography budget.
Know your estimated guest list.
Gain clarity on your wedding venue(s).
Know the finalised event dates.
Decide if you want the photographer for all the ceremonies or only the selected ones.
Know whether you're booking the photographer from groom's side and bride's side separately or both sides together.
Skim through profiles of popular wedding photographers in your city at:
• Online wedding planning portals such as ShaadiSaga.com
• Social Media Platforms
• Wedding Albums of your newly-wed friends & family members
Understand the quality of their work and the wedding style they specialise in.
Shortlist the ones that you like the most (at least 5-6 of them).
Meet each one of them in person to check out their portfolios and know about their work experience, prices and cancellation policies better.
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Understanding if their photography aesthetics align with what you need or not
Analyzing their quality of work
Knowing their rapport in the market
Checking if their prices fall within your budget
Availability of dates
Communicate about all your functions, bridal & groom entry ideas, special performances (if any) and even the minutest of details.
Share your approximate budget
(Avoid telling your exact budget so that it helps you in negotiating the prices. Get their quotes by sharing your requirements. Although, many photographers work on fixed pricing.)
Discuss the exact deliverables and package, including:
• Number of edited pictures and raw pictures,
• Time taken to deliver the raw data
• Wedding Album
Know if the photographer will himself cover your wedding or appoint some of his associates to do the same.
Know how many photographers with what area of expertise would be coming on what event and day.
Discuss their payment policies including policy on taxes, cancellation and refund policy
Gain clarity on travel and accommodation logistics and know who will bear the expenses (especially in case of a destination wedding)
Cost of extra services (drone, photobooths, Live photo station, LED screens, etc.)
Know what is the policy in case the deliverables are delayed
Discuss the venue and lighting
Enquire if they have a built-in backup team in case of an unforeseen emergency
Know all the Not-so-common things to discuss with your chosen photographer & how to finalize your ultimate wedding photographer.
Sign a written contract
Keep a record of whatever agreement you have. This would help you in case of any misunderstanding or dispute.
Confirm the timeline of your events to the photographer
Share your personal list of must-have shots that you want from the photographer. (For example, jewellery shots, getting ready shots, lehenga shots, bridesmaids pictures etc.)
Get your photographer familiar with the names and faces of the most important people to be clicked.
(Pro Tip: You can hand out passport size photos of your family members, to avoid any last-minute confusion.)
Despite putting so much effort into planning, there are a lot of things that can still go wrong. So, keeping that in mind, we’ve jotted down a few things that can go wide of the mark, but you should totally AVOID:
(Don't forget to check with your photographer 10 days before your wedding about the schedule. Also, post-wedding, be prompt with all communication so that you get the deliverables soon.)
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