- What is your main mission on my wedding day?
This is a great question because there’s really no “right” answer, even though there are plenty of wrong ones. A good photographer is (first) an observer. Be wary of photographers who know it all before you’ve had a chance to talk- not knowing YOU means not knowing what will tug at your heartstrings.
“Seeing artistically does not happen automatically. We must constantly develop our powers of observation.” – Eugene Delacroix
Being a skilled observer means that as you talk to your photographer, you’re being heard. A good photographer will try to suss out what you’re going to LOVE about your photos without you even knowing what those things may be. Yes, we’re going to capture your day in stunning detail and leave you as happy as possible with the results- but one goal is to surprise you so that when you’re going through your photos, you’ll see things you love that you weren’t even aware of at the time.
Your wedding day is going to be a blur. There will be highlights frozen in your memory, but the mission of a good photographer is to deliver a blend of what you expect and what you wish for in a manner so seamless, you’re barely aware of what’s being captured.
- How are you different from other photographers?
“I’m a different photographer, just like everyone else!” Ha.
Some traits to look for in your photographer are that they’re easy to work with. Yes, photographers are artists, but that doesn’t mean you need to deal with a diva. A good photographer exudes calm and provides a reassuring presence in the midst of chaos. They should be able to ramp people up if need be, show creative solutions to problems on the fly, handle adversity (think unhappy bridesmaid or groomsman), be patient, be efficient (nothing runs on time, so it’s super important that they be able to make the most of what they’ve got), and most of all be FUN.
Your photographer should be emotionally invested in your day, and in your images. There’s a fine line between creative direction and an overbearing attitude- empathy seems to be the defining trait that allows a photographer to walk that line skillfully. An empathic individual is better at connecting in the moment and drawing awareness away from the camera and into where it’s needed.
Choose a photographer who can do that. You’ll need someone like that to deal with your relatives (especially the ones with their own fancy cameras… you know who I’m talking about…).
At the end of the day, the two things you take home with you are your spouse and your photographs. That’s why asking questions like these is so important. Get to know your potential photographer. A half hour phone call or a meeting over a cup of coffee is a GREAT way to get a feel for each other and to see how you connect.
That connection makes all the difference in the world. It will help you go from just having good photos to receiving the sort of photos that will make you sigh contentedly when you see them on your wall.
If you don’t click with a potential photographer, don’t book with them. It’s that simple.