Society, I am thrilled to introduce guest blogger Amanda Reed of Amanda Reed Photography. She is a talented professional photographer with a skilled eye, and has a cult following of her digital art and signature style. Over the coming months, Amanda will share important factors to consider when it comes to photography and your wedding and how to avoid making mistakes. Welcome Amanda, the floor is yours…
Thanks Tanja. Well, let’s jump right in. So, how do you choose the right photographer for you? Is it budget, personality, maybe a referral from a friend? All of the above? No matter what your reason(s), make sure you hire a professional. Today society would have you believe that owning a 14 megapixel camera or a 10x optical zoom is what defines you as a photographer. I assure you that definition is wrong.
I know of people who consider hiring Uncle Joe to shoot their wedding day. After all, he knows the family, has shot a few high school seniors photos with his new SLR camera, and not to mention the fact that he will give you a high resolution disc of your images – seems like a great deal. Great deals are just what they seem, a deal and not a contracted agreement between a client and a professional. So what’s the difference between a professional and Uncle Joe? -A LOT. A skilled photographer understands the art of photography but also the science.
As a professional photographer myself, I consider the composition of a shot, the lighting (HUGE…more on this at a later date), conditions of the environment, etc to determine the appropriate settings for the camera. Does Uncle Joe have this kind of knowledge and skill? For example, do you know that broad lighting makes you look heavy? Or that if the settings on the camera are not right, your first kiss as husband and wife on that pristine golf course your parents reserved for your ceremony ends up a silhouette of two unidentifiable people…and all because Uncle Joe’s camera was set on automatic mode metered for the sky instead of skin.
A professional could have saved you this heartbreak. We look for light and decide how to best position ourselves for that once in a lifetime shot. We live this and see moments before they happen. We anticipate the tear in your mother’s eye as your dad gives you away, and know how to vantage ourselves to capture both – without red eyes from an on camera flash. Get the picture? Be sure to hire someone qualified for the job. A wedding is not something that can be re-shot at a later date.
There are also unexpected challenges and equipment failures that can and do happen – What if Uncle Joe has a fatal error to a CF card? Perhaps the camera dies all together and there is not a backup in site. Talk about stress and lost opportunity- what a disaster! This has happened to someone, and it will again. Don’t let that someone be you. This is where a professional comes into play saving you from such disaster. We are prepared with experience and thousands of dollars in equipment, ready to capture the special moments in your day.
When meeting your photographer be prepared. A few good questions when seeking out a photographer will save you valuable time in the future. Find out how long the photographer has been in business. Ask something personal, like “what made you want to be a wedding photographer.” Find out other things like, if you need to reschedule your date, will your retainer still be valid? Is the photographer insured? What equipment is used and do they have backup gear? A good photographer will be happy to share this information with you.
So do yourself a huge favor, hire a professional. And please consider the role that not only a professional photographer plays in your wedding but professional planners and florists as well. I assure you there are professionals to work with all budgets and styles, and you owe it to yourself to be prepared and seek them out.
I hope this gives you a little bit of insight into the mind of a professional photographer, and what to look for when considering the right photographer for your wedding. In my next featured article we will discuss engagement sessions.
See you soon!