I feel like I can dish out advice on this one... Not because I am a photographer but because I have been in your shoes...
You can read my story over on this blog... Its written by me about my own experience and how I cocked the bit up that was MY wedding photography.
You'd think that I would have known better but at the time it just wasn't at the top of my 'Most Important' list.
If I was booking a wedding photographer today then it would be at the top of my 'to book' list... underlined... highlighted and then maybe some LED lights decorating it so that I would keep being reminded to do it properly!
Gah... If only I had a time machine. But I don't so I do like to stress how important your wedding photography is...(and not just because now I am a wedding photographer! I was a bloody photographer back then who had shot weddings and I still didn't realise how important it was. Until it was too late)
When your wedding day is over (and it does go so fast!) and your flowers have died what have you got left? Yes I know you have a gorgeous husband or wife to canoodle with on a Saturday night but how are you going to keep re-living that best day of your life? Memories? Yes they are lovely. But memories fade and become replaced by new ones.
Over time you do forget. You think you won't, You believe you will remember every second and detail of the day. You will remember a lot. But give it 6... even 12 weeks and you'll have a hazy recollection of the best day of your life!
Trust me. Been there. Done that. Living and telling the tale.
I can also point you in the direction of oodles of brides who upon seeing their wedding photographs for the first time say 'OMG there is so much I don't remember or didn't even know what happening' There is SO SO much going on around you during the day. Its IMPOSSIBLE to absorb it all. Not a chance you will be able to call me a liar on that one either.
So how do you know I (or any other wedding photographer) would be the right fit for your wedding day? I'll waffle on a bit more below to tell you...
Theres always a few things to consider when booking any wedding supplier but the main one is...
The budget you assign to each of your wedding suppliers out of your overall budget will give you an inkling of how important those particular suppliers are to you on your wedding day. You don't have to spend a lot on anything. But when dividing up your budget spend the most on whats important to you two as a couple.
My budget looked something like this...
Hotel Rooms £400
Venue Dressing £100
Dessert Table £100
You can see from just looking down my list what I deemed as important for my big day. Looking back I made a lot of the right choices. We spent a huge percentage of our overall budget on entertaining our guests because thats what we believed a wedding should be. A big party where everyone had a ball. THEY DID! THEY BLOODY WELL DID but you know what... I don't have any photo's of them enjoying the entertainment I put on for them. KICKING MYSELF AGAIN.
Think really hard about how your overall budget will be divided up.
You don't have to go crazy and spend silly amounts as most expensive doesn't always mean best when it comes to wedding suppliers.
Make sure you like what you're seeing and you're not just basing your choices on price or because your mate Susan used the same supplier.
Another thing you need to consider when you chat to your wedding photographer is 'Do we have a connection?'
Having someone follow you round on your wedding day that you don't particularly like is gonna be pretty shitty so make sure you get on first and foremost.
Last of all look at their style of photography... can you imagine displaying it on the walls of your house? Does the style reflect the type of couple you are? If yes then you're onto a winner! You can never do enough research when it comes to your wedding photography. Ask for full wedding galleries... Any wedding photographer can pop an amazing photograph onto social media, but can they take consistently good photographs throughout your whole wedding day in varying situations?
Research, Research, Research... You really don't want to look back and think you got it wrong.
You'll know when you find the one! You'll have a warm fuzzy feeling inside (a bit like when you met your future husband or wife to be!)
At some point during your planning process... During a conversation or whilst looking at their portfolio you'll just think 'THATS WHO I WANT AT MY WEDDING'
WHEN YOU KNOW, YOU KNOW!