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QUESTIONS & ANSWERS
You have questions, we've got answers:
Ask any bride to describe her wedding day and chances are she'll respond, "It was a big blur!" -- which is why you want to capture the whole thing for posterity (especially for your future children who will get a kick out of seeing footage of Mom and Dad). Photographs and videos ensure that you'll be able to relive the day (and cringe at your father-in-law's rendition of the moonwalk) decades...or months...from now.
So, welcome to your 15 minutes of fame. For one day only you'll be followed by photographers and cinematographers cataloging your every move. To make sure those snapshots are prefect, consider these points when lining up your photographer and cinematographer.
To help you choose the right photographer, we have listed some of our most commonly asked questions for you to read.
Some More Things To Consider When Choosing A Photographer and Cinematographer!
It is extremely important to check the reputation of your wedding photographer. Be a smart shopper and do your research online and through friends who have gotten married. Something to think about: If you go to a restaurant and have a wonderful dinner, it is highly unlikely that you will take the time to write a review of your good experience. But let’s say you went to the same restaurant, had a rude waitress and the most over priced, horrible food ever. Would you be willing a take a minute or two to write a review and stop someone else from making the same mistake? Yes, of course you would! So do your homework and you’ll be happy you did! Your photographer is one of the most important vendors you will book for your wedding. So take your time and make the chose that's right for you!
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How much do you want to spend?
It may seem silly to sink 10 or more percent of your budget into photos, but years from now your pictures are the only tangible things you'll have to show for all your hours of planning. Make peace with the fact that you'll spend a hefty sum on pictures-between $2,500 and $12,000 depending on where you're getting married, the photographer you choose, and the package you pick. Still nothing captures moments quite like video. Don't write off the concept because it conjures memories of watching home movies of neighbor Jane's sweaty cousin doing the chicken dance at her reception. Cinematography has come a long way over the past few years. Your cinematographer will create a 6-9-minute cinema quality documentary short film of your day with special effects starting at $1995.
The most common mistake when choosing your photographer is selecting them solely based on the price. The phrase "you get what you pay for" is very true when it comes to artistic professions such as photography and cinematography. When you simply go with the lowest bidder in photography, you are generally selecting someone who is either (A) inexperienced, (B) not confident enough in their own work to put a higher value on it, (C) not in high demand, or (D) cuts corners on quality of products or amount of time they will devote to you. Additionally, some of the lowest bids may come from studios known in the industry as 'wedding mills'. These are the kinds of studios that focus on quantity over quality. Instead of having a few prominent photographers on staff, they have a large pool of on-call photographers with varying skills, gear and experience levels to fill in at events as needed. In most cases, you don't get to pick your photographer. In many cases, you won't even know who your photographer will be until they show up the day of the wedding. Trusting a wedding mill to handle your wedding photography can be a real gamble, not only with your photography quality, but with your overall customer experience. Try to remember that after the food has been eaten, the cake has been cut, the dress has been put in storage, your honeymoon is a distant memory, and the kids are growing up and going off to college, the one thing you will have to look back on to remember your wedding day will be your photographs.
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How comfortable will you feel with your photographer?
You're going to spend a long time with your photographer, so you'll want to be completely comfortable with him or her. You may even want to arrange a test shoot, perhaps for engagement photos, so you can get a feel for how he or she works and find out if you're compatible. Also, be sure to meet with your photographer before the wedding, just like you would the reception hall. This guarantees that your photography staff and you are on the same page! In all your excitement remember not to wait too long to book your favorite photographer. Your only planning on getting married once and you won't want to miss out on the photographer you really want.
Never use a friend, relative, or hobbyist to photograph your big day!
Rather than hiring a professional photographer, some brides risk not having any quality photographs of their big day by allowing a friend or relative to shoot the wedding for them, usually as their "gift." The quickest way to ruin a friendship is to volunteer to photograph the most important day of your friend's life and then screw it up. That brings me to my next point… generally a part-time or hobbyist wedding photographer will not have the same caliber cameras, lenses, and other equipment as a full-time professional wedding photographer would have. Furthermore, most part-time or hobbyist wedding photographers will not have backup cameras, lenses, flashes, and other critical equipment should something malfunction. Your wedding photographer only has ONE chance to photograph your wedding day correctly. These memories will last you a lifetime and you want to make sure you will be happy every time you see them for many years to come.
TIP: Disposable camera favors are a bad idea! Not only are they budget hogs—a couple can spend hundreds, possibly thousands, of dollars on buying and developing these cheap, often defective cameras—but they won't provide a return on your investment. You won't get fun candids of the bride, groom and guests. You'll most likely end up with a lot of pictures of cut off heads, blown out skin tones, red eyes, a dark room, the floor, and so on. Let your professional photographer catch professional-quality shots of all of your guests for you instead.