We all know the saying “you get what you pay for” and I personally think it fits most cases, but we are going to explain why this is not one of them.
Choosing the right wedding photographer shouldn’t be harder than choosing your resort or a color palette, but without a doubt the right choice will make you fall in love with your photographs, and the memories you’ll have will be as vivid as the ones in your mind.
Things to consider:
- Your personality
- The style of photos you like
- Your wedding photographer’s style
- Your wedding timeline
- Your interest in photos
- Your budget at the time of hiring
- Resorts and Photography: Hidden Costs and Reality
Let’s start with your personality.
Your personality matters
Are you romantic? Do you like fun pictures? Do you enjoy being goofy in front of the camera? Are you camera-shy?
Most couples forget how important their own personality is at the time of being photographed.
If you are lucky to have a wedding photographer that allows you to be yourself in front of the camera, you will notice a huge difference with the photos that you are used to having taken by a family member.
It is essential that you and your partner feel comfortable interacting in front of the photographer, because otherwise, if there were communication gaps or misunderstandings, the necessary ambiance to take the best photos would be lost.
Don’t forget to be yourself in front of the camera.
Which Photography Style Do You Like?
This is the hardest part of this entire post. Enjoy it.
Do you have a Pinterest account?
Have you been saving wedding photos for the past few months?
If you haven’t done it yet, you are part of that small rare group of brides that are not planning their wedding through Pinterest.
If you know what we are talking about, is time for you to let go of the computer mouse, step back and look at your favorite’s board selection.
What do you see?
Romantic photos? Posed photos? Photos with flashes obviously not coming from natural light? Lots of kisses? Lots of laughter?
This is the best way to select your favorite style. If you like romantic photographs look for a wedding photographer that has romantic photographs! If you like posed pictures filled with lights and colors, then maybe look for a photographer that works with flashes and assistants.
Having a selection of photos of people laughing and choosing a photographer based on his/her portfolio of couples staring at the camera wouldn’t be a right decision.
A good decision is taken the moment you start to investigate your wedding photographer. It is taken having into consideration your personal taste and not the cheap photographer’s taste you found online, or even worse, the one available in your resort.
Which Photography Style are you getting?
This is fundamental. Are you hiring a photographer because you like his/her photos or because of their prices?
You should always choose professionals for the quality of their work (and their website is their work). If you find nice photos on an outdated website, out of style and messy…how do you think they will deliver your photos? On a modern album?
The photographs each photographer shows are a true reflection of their personality.
If you see couples in love, you will have a photographer that believes in love.
If you find disconnected couples, incapable of looking united even by being right next to the person they love, this doesn’t mean they don’t love each other, it means their photographer couldn’t communicate. This is often seen on bad quality weddings.
Judge the work of the person you hire based on their presentation, because for us photographers that’s 50% of our work.
Is your Wedding Timeline Organized?
Photographers are not Wedding Planners because we don’t like being the center of attention, but we certainly have a lot of qualities that are similar.
A good photographer should advise you on the organization of the events of your wedding day.
A bad photographer will tell you exactly what to do and won’t allow you to adapt the schedule based on your priorities.
It is important to dedicate enough time to the getting ready because most people might think 20 or 30 minutes would be enough to take photos of these moments, but the reality is that you actually need 45 minutes to an hour to do it right. The same thing happens with the session. You can do it in less time, but you will have better results if you dedicate a bit more than 30 minutes.
Whenever you are planning your wedding day remember to organize events with enough time so you are not rushing through the activities. The best way is to do everything in a relaxed manner and let the day run smoothly.
Wedding Photos?.. Why Should I Care?
Well.. this is simple.
No matter how much you spend on decoration, food, travel, wedding dress, accessories and everything else, the only tangible memories that will remain of your wedding day, will be your photographs.
Having an album to show your family, future children and grandchildren (why not?), will make you live your wedding day over and over again.
You probably understood by now how important the photos are, and why it is so important to hire the right person with the right qualifications.
Why is Wedding Photography SO EXPENSIVE?
We get that question now and then.. and I don’t think our prices are expensive AT ALL.
It’s simple. Wedding Photographers look like the person who shows up, take his camera out of a backpack, takes pictures and then leaves.
Well, that’s about 20% of our job description. We invest loads of money on expensive lenses, cameras, flashes, tripods, accessories, website design, cloud space to share our work, amongst other things.
If you consider that an entire wedding can cost between 5.000 and 25.000 dollars, dedicating a small percentage of it to a photographer could be the wrong decision to make. We always recommend establishing a budget for photography based on the expenses of your wedding.
Is the wedding costing you 3.000 dollars? You probably don’t want to spend 2.000 dollars on a photographer. Maybe you should hire a small coverage package to cover fewer events with exceptional quality.
Is your wedding total over 20.000 dollars and you don’t have 10% to hire a photographer? Your photos will not reflect the quality that you expect from your wedding day.
A couple that spends 20.000 dollars to get married in Punta Cana gets the best deal. The quality of the suppliers should be top-notch as well.
At the time of hiring a photographer don’t forget to dedicate a percentage of your budget that you consider to be the right one.
About Resorts and Photography
If you don’t know it yet, your coordinator will tell you when you before your wedding: Most hotels charge couples a Vendor Fee to allow access for MakeUp Artists, DJ, Photobooth, Photographers and Videographers amongst other professionals.
These vendor fees vary from 200 to 1,000 dollars to allow the photographer to work on your wedding day. You can check yours on this list.
Remember when we said, “ you get what you paid for”?
Well, if you read this far you will know what we think about hiring trained professionals to document your wedding the best possible way.
Most resorts offer photography and videography services. Although we have our own opinion about these services we don’t feel like talking about it in here.
We do think it’s right to inform you since some people think that a package of 2,000 dollars bought inside the resort will mean paying the photographer that amount. This could not be further away from reality.
Hotels generally receive half the money, and the photography company will pay the photographer a small commission to take the pictures. Many times, without the necessary equipment, no backup cameras, or enough experience to meet up to the standards of what you are paying for.
These photographers will do their best and we don’t want to criticize their intentions. We simply want to let you know the reality of the situation so that you can make a conscious decision when choosing the suppliers for your wedding.
Best decisions are made taking into consideration your intentions, your needs, your taste as a couple and the possibilities to access a qualified vendor.
We recommend you hire vendors that are professionals at what they do.
Ask for opinions, ask your Wedding Planner, but don’t trust blindly on what your resort tells you since most of the time, they are making an effort to sell you something you can get for less and better quality elsewhere.
Thanks for reading this far.
We look forward to having you in our blog next week to read more about weddings in Punta Cana!
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