Yay!! So you're engaged to the love of your life and now it's time to start getting together your dream wedding vendor dream team! Your first 3 vendors are pretty important, your planner (me!!), your venue and your photographer. Your photographer is oh so important because those pictures are what you're going to have to look back on years and years down the road.
But where do you even start to find your perfect photographer?! Well, I've teamed up with a local photographer (and all around awesome person) to give you a few tips to keep in mind while you're searching.
Christine Yodsukar is a Wedding Photographer based in Portland and Los Angeles. Her flagship studio, The Yodsukars, is known for their luxury weddings and cinematic style. The newer I Do, Pacific Northwest Wedding Photography has found its home in Portland. Christine is a Speaker and Educator in the Photography community and can be found frequently on WEtv as a photography expert.
Here are Christine's tips...
Finding your dream wedding photographer is no easy task, especially when there are over 140,000 photographers in the United States alone and each one does things a little differently. Recently, I did a Facebook Live talking about my method you can use to find your perfect wedding vendors and you’ll find useful information if you have a lot of referrals from friends and family members who have used a certain photographer in the past for their wedding. Below you will find my Top 3 Tips for Finding Your Perfect Wedding Photographer if you are starting from scratch.
The most important piece of this puzzle is EXPERIENCE. Not how much experience the photographer has photographing weddings, although that is still very important, but what type of experience does this photographer give to you. Our studio I Do, Pacific Northwest is all about providing our couples and clients with 5 Star Service. We want everyone we work with to go home feeling like they have been treated the best they ever have. And why do we do that? Simply because we love people and we think everyone deserves 5 Star service at all times. So with every interaction you have with photographers as you begin contacting them, pay attention to how they make you feel, if they make you feel taken care of, if they listen to you and hear you, and if they are excited about your story.
Another very important thing to pay attention to is STYLE. Each photographer has a specific style that they create when they are working. Make sure that you know what style you and your partner love, and only contact photographers that work in that style. Look through their website and social media portfolios before contacting them, and after you have spoken with them and know that you are loving the experience they are giving you, then you can ask to see a full wedding gallery from them, so you can make sure their style and talent is consistent throughout the whole wedding day. Pay special attention to Reception photos and Family photos in their gallery to make sure its up to par with the rest of their work.
Last but certainly not least, you’ll really want to see reviews written about the photographer either by past clients or fellow wedding vendors. Quantity is not always Quality with reviews and referrals, as some photographers don’t do large volumes of weddings each year, but still are full time and extremely talented. Just make sure to read the reviews and pay attention to what people are saying. Do people only talk about how beautiful the photos are? If so, chances are they did not have a very personal relationship with the photographer. If the reviews talk a lot about how comfortable and happy the photographer made them feel throughout the whole process, that is someone to contact if you want a close relationship with your photographer.
It may seem like a daunting task, but I promise you, once you have found the wedding photographer that is absolutely perfect in every way for you, you will know, and the photographer will too. It’s kind of like dating. When you know you know.
There it is, by the expert herself! Finding your photographer is a big and important task during your planning process. But with these tips in mind and the help of your planner, you can undoubtably find your dream photographer!