Naktine vestuvių fotografija - fotografas Mantas Janavičius

How Not to Make a Mistake When Choosing a Wedding Photographer?

Navigating the Wedding Photography Market

If you’re looking for a wedding photographer, you’ve probably noticed that there are many of them in Lithuania. It’s not easy to navigate and distinguish who is professional, who is just average, and who is an amateur. I’m sure you don’t want to take any risks on your wedding day. But how to avoid the risk? How to know if you’ve chosen a professional and reliable photographer who will perfectly capture your celebration?

Starting Your Search

Professional photographers are always very busy, so you should start your search at least six months before the event, or even earlier. This increases the likelihood that the photographer you like will be available on your desired date. It’s important to know where to start your search. There are many ways, and the offer is also vast. Friends who have had their weddings photographed can recommend a photographer, you can use advertising magazines distributed for free in wedding venues, but the most popular way is the internet.

Evaluating Portfolios

For example, you find a portfolio online, where, of course, five hundred photographers claim to be professionals. Unfortunately, the reality turns out to be different. So how not to make a mistake? The essential thing to rely on is the photos. If you don’t like the photographer’s photos, don’t hesitate to look for another one. When looking at photos, pay attention to whether there are more than a few photos from the same wedding. Capturing a few nice shots can be done by an amateur. If you find photos that you like, ask yourself these questions: „What if we were in these photos? If our wedding day were captured? Are these the photos we would want to show others and look at again and again? Do these photos evoke the emotions and experiences of that day? Do we want to see ourselves happy, graceful, or perhaps modest but radiating with elegance? Are these the photos we would want to have for a lifetime?” If you have doubts, keep looking until you find photos that make you answer these questions positively. When you find such photos, contact the photographer and arrange a meeting. (Of course, if your wedding day is not yet booked.)

Meeting the Photographer

Make sure to ask the photographer to bring at least a few photo albums to the meeting so you can see more of their work and make sure you like it. (As I mentioned earlier, it’s important that there are many photos from the same wedding in the album. This will prove that not only the best shots are included in the album, and that the photographer is capable of professionally capturing the whole event.) Equally important is that you like the photographer as a person, as they will accompany you throughout the day. If you feel antipathy towards the photographer, it may show in the photos. During the meeting, don’t hesitate to ask questions that matter to you, even if they don’t seem directly related to the photos.

Understanding Service Packages

Make sure to clarify exactly what is included in the service package you will be paying for: how many photos you will receive, whether extra charges apply for travel, how much extra hours beyond the time specified in the contract cost, how long it will take to deliver the photos. Be sure to sign a contract that will specify everything and leave no ambiguities. Also, you can ask for advice on the route, locations for better photo shooting. Ask if the photographer has any ideas on how to make your celebration unique.

Preparing for the Big Day

Remember that a professional wedding photographer starts photographing you during the conversation, using their eyes. They see how and from which angle you will look better in photos. A professional photographer is knowledgeable not only about photography but also about things like wedding dresses, makeup, or hairstyles. If you think you could use some advice, don’t hesitate to ask, the least a photographer should provide is contacts of a reliable stylist and makeup artist.

Final Considerations

For assurance that you will look impeccable on the day, some brides have a trial makeup and hairstyle before the wedding. Equally useful is a pre-wedding photo session. Most couples don’t imagine what it’s like to be in front of the camera. This session can be called a rehearsal before the wedding. During this rehearsal, you will get to know the photographer better, appreciate their creativity, and, of course, the result of the photo session will give the final answer as to whether this photographer meets your expectations for the wedding day. Of course, a very topical issue is the price of photographer’s services. I won’t say how much a professional wedding photographer costs because each photographer’s case is individual, and what amount they assess their services at.

Why Professional Matters

It’s elementary that a photographer working for 500 € cannot buy or update professional photo equipment, nor can they improve their skills. Such a photographer will likely not provide quality, professional services and will only be a photographer who may take good photos of your wedding. I’m sure you don’t want to trust your wedding memories to a photographer whose name is MAYBE. You might argue that your wedding is modest and you don’t need a professional photographer. Let me ask you: „Does a modest wedding mean that it’s not the most important day of your life? That this celebration is not about you, and you don’t want to look beautiful that day? Does it mean that you don’t need wonderful photos that reflect the spirit of your outwardly modest wedding? Don’t you need photos that will make you look charming and unique and that will show that you are the happiest people on earth on this, modestly arranged, day?”.

Conclusion

I don’t affirm in any way that it’s not worth hiring amateur photographers or people who have other jobs and photography is just an additional activity for them. The services of these photographers are cheaper, and perhaps you will truly like some of the photos. The most important thing is that you know what kind of photographer you have chosen and don’t feel mistaken. I advise all couples not to skimp a little on search and to choose such a photographer who will not only meet but exceed expectations.

Photographer Mantas Janavičius

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