In spite of this ear infection raging on (and I mean, seriously? an ear infection? last time I had one of these I was still in grade school) tonight’s photo shoot was an absolute delight. Sarah and Shaun were wonderful to work with – and so totally cute! I put the bug in their ear that you can totally bring a photographer along with you for your long-distance wedding… and honestly? In spite of my wanting to tag along for what I’m sure will be an unforgettable wedding with such fabulous people, it actually is a safer alternative to hiring someone local that you’ve never dealt with before.
I always recommend couples really do some serious shopping when it comes to choosing a wedding photographer, and don’t leave it for the last minute. As soon as you get engaged, start looking around at local photography experts. Find someone you can relate to, and who’s portfolio you absolutely love! And then book an engagement or couples shoot. Your engagement shoot not only gets you prepared for your big day by providing images for your Save the Date cards, your Invitations, your Thank You cards, and your Wedding Announcement it can also serve as an interview process for any photographer you are seriously considering for your big day.
There really are two absolutely vital points when it comes to choosing your wedding photographer, and they both must be weighed equally. You need to have someone you enjoy working with. Your personalities have to click, and you need to have a good rapport. You need to feel relaxed and at ease with them, if you don’t? It will show in your photographs. But just as important? You need to love their work. And seeing the results from your couples shoot will let you know exactly what you can expect. Just because you love what they’ve created with other couples, don’t assume you’re going to get cookie cutter results. In fact, why would you want cookie cutter results? You are a unique couple, and what the three of you create together should be unique to you as well.
After your session think about these things: Did the photographer listen to you? Did they make you feel like you were an equal contributor? Did they help you to feel confident about yourself and their process? Did they answer any questions you had? Is this someone you would enjoy having near by throughout your entire wedding day? Would they add to the experience rather than detract from it?
All of these things apply whether you are looking to tie the knot locally or if you are planning to do some globe trotting on your big day. It’s a whole lot easier to get married locally, as you can really get to know and trust all the vendors who will be helping to make your day special – but preserving your wedding and the memories surrounding it really is too important to leave to chance. Most photography professionals will be happy to offer a discount to couples planning a long-distance wedding to help cover the added expenses of bringing along a photographer, myself included. And then you can know for certain that those oh so precious, once in a lifetime moments, will be captured perfectly, a legacy for your newly created family.