Choosing a wedding photographer: Look for these green flags!


August 16, 2022

Choosing a wedding photographer can be one of the most difficult decisions when planning your big day! A photographer isn’t just another box to check on your list. They are the vendor you will spend the most time with. If you’re eloping, their images will be the only glimpse your friends and family have of your day. No pressure, right?! Don’t worry, I’m here to help you choose the right photographer with 5 green flags to look for!

Green flags to look for when choosing a wedding photographer:

They have raving reviews in multiple places.

Having reviews on their site is great, but it’s important to take it a step further and check out other websites to verify they are legit. Wedding vendor listings like The Knot, or a quick Google search of their business name are great places to start. This will also help to spot any less than stellar reviews, as businesses only showcase the best of the best. You can see if any previous clients have had an issue with the photog, and how the photog decided to respond to them.

They showcase real couples.

If you aren’t in the industry, you may not know what a “styled shoot” is. A styled shoot is when vendors come together to showcase their work with a staged wedding.While styled shoots are a great tool to show what the photographer and vendors can do, they are just that – staged. Styled shoots are fantastic for all the businesses involved, and there’s nothing wrong with showing casing them. However, if a photogs portfolio looks entirely made up of models and you see the same models and possibly the same shoot on other photographer’s websites, you can assume it was a styled shoot. The issue here is that styled shoots are in a controlled environment, without the real challenges of a wedding day. Make sure the photographer has real life experience with weddings before signing the contract.

tips for choosing a wedding photographer with couple infront of the mountains

Their contract protects you, as well as themselves.

What happens if the photographer gets sick or there is an emergency? It’s every photographer’s nightmare, and the policy should be reassuring and clear in their contract. The contract shouldn’t be one-sided, you should feel that there is a back up plan that you can rely on in case of emergency.

They have time for you.

I talk about this a lot when I mentor photographers: Fully booked is not the same thing as overbooked. A photographer who is in demand will be fully booked, but if they are overbooked, it’s a red flag. If they don’t respond to your emails for weeks at a time, or if they constantly are showing up on their IG stories to explain why they are late on galleries or haven’t gotten back to emails, it could be a sign they are overbooked and overwhelmed.

You have a good vibe together.

My last tip is the most important tip: Make sure you vibe well together! Your photographer is the one vendor you will spend the entire day with. Make sure that your personalities mesh well together, and that you feel comfortable and relaxed talking to them. If the vibe is off, it will show in all of your photos, and even worse you will always remember that feeling. Set up a phone call, Zoom call, or if you live in the same place, meet up for coffee or drinks!

It’s okay to not hit all these points when choosing your wedding photographer, but make sure you do a gut check and that it feels right! And hey, if you’ve got a good feeling about me being your photographer, you can head right on over to this page to contact me 🙂

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chelsea stratso