One of the most difficult tasks while planning for a wedding event is to find the right photographer for you without breaking the bank. Lot of people makes mistake here and ends up paying an exorbitant amount to an average photographer.
While helping one of my friends to find out the best photographer for his wedding, I came up with some handy tips which you can use to hire the best photographer for yourself.
- Focus on the work and not the gadgets. If a photographer is able to produce excellent work (look at their portfolio) even with his modest set of gadgets and lenses, you should not be asking which camera and how expensive lenses he uses. The creativity lies in the artist not the gadgets. It’s just like asking a painter, which brand of oil paints and brushes he uses.
- Team Work. Wedding photography is always a team work. If a photographer tells you that he will be able to cover the entire event on his own, he is lying. The truth is when you have a team of at least two photographers working together; it is more likely that all the precious moments and key persons would be covered. One acts as a back-up for another (just in case he misses the moment) and brings a second perspective of looking at the same image. The second photographer need not be a professional. You can hire an amateur photographer at a much lesser price and you never know he/she may do a better job than your regular photographer.
- Raw or JPEG? These are just standard file formats for images. Choose a photographer who shoots in raw. A serious photographer will never shoot in JPEG as they acknowledge that they cannot be perfect all the time and the images might need some color correction and touch ups. JPEG file does not let you edit the images to the extent you can do it in raw format.
- Look at the Portfolio. The idea of creating a photography portfolio is to showcase your best images there. You can safely presume that what you see on a photographer’s portfolio is their best work so far, i.e. around 20-30% of their entire work. If that 20-30% of the work itself has some flaws, you can imagine how their rest of the work would be.
- Don’t judge a photographer by their quote. Hiring an expensive photographer does not mean you will get out of the world pictures. If you are running low on budget, you can pick a photographer who is as good as an expensive photographer and will do his/her best to deliver the same quality of images. The question that pops up in your mind is why he/she will do this for any lesser if he/she is so good. Yes, there are photographers like me who do it for passion, not for money. This category of photographer does not depend on photography assignments for their daily bread and butter. Most of them pursue photography as an alternative career and would be happy to do a shoot for a much reasonable price, if that fits well in their schedule.