With more budget-friendly options available for weddings than ever before on everything from food to decorations, couples are often able to enjoy a more affordable wedding day. There is nothing wrong with getting a good deal, but one area of your wedding where you definitely shouldn’t skimp is on your wedding photography. Sure, you can hire someone who enjoys photography as a hobby and occasionally shoots a wedding for extra cash, but for wedding photographs that really convey the special emotions of your big day, a professional photographer is the only way to go. These are some of the most common wedding photo faux pas as well as tips on how to steer clear of them:
Hiring the Wrong Photographer
Any skilled photographer should be able to shoot a diverse range of styles; however, a portfolio with a variety of shots is not the only reason to hire a wedding photographer. He or she should have a solid grasp on the overall feeling of your wedding style. If your wedding will be held outdoors, going with a photographer who understands how to play up the natural beauty of the surrounding flora and fauna will give your wedding photos a rich quality, while an indoor wedding in a sumptuous ballroom may call for a photographer who has a sense of drama in their work. Think about the type of energy and atmosphere you envision for your wedding and let that dictate the type of photographer you hire.
Not Communicating What You Want
Although a photographer’s portfolio, blog, website, etc, is a great place to get ideas, hiring someone whose work you admire is just the beginning. You may believe that your wedding photos will turn out just as the example photos that convinced you to book your photographer did, and it certainly is possible. However, you need to be specific about what you want, and that is why great photographers will request a shot list from you that describes exactly what you are after. Regardless of how much skill and talent a photographer has, he or she will not be able to read your mind. It is not fair for you to expect them to automatically know which types of shots matter the most to you. You should not only be specific when making your shot list, you should also consider adding some examples of the work they have done that you particularly love so they have a better idea of exactly what you are drawn to.
Failing to Request That Guests Unplug
Few of us today go anywhere without our cell phone, so it should come as no surprise that most of your wedding guests will have theirs with them. A phone that rings or beeps during your ceremony or toast is bad enough, but having guests become a low-level group of paparazzi snapping your photo with their phones as you walk down the aisle is even worse, not to mention how bad it looks in your photos. It’s not just distracting, it can become downright infuriating because your guests are then more concerned about the filter settings on their phone than they are about your vows. What’s more, if they are posting their snaps to social media, there will be tons of wedding shots all over the internet that you have no control over.
In order to avoid this headache, go ahead and have your officiant (or whomever you prefer) make an announcement right before your ceremony starts reminding guests to shut off their ringers and keep phones put away throughout your wedding. You can even have a “cell phone check” as they arrive where they leave them until the festivities are over.
Do you have any other advice when it comes to wedding photos? Leave your comment and share your experience.