What questions should I ask when interviewing wedding photographers?
When searching for a wedding photographer, you might be wondering what kind of things you should be looking for. What questions should I ask when interviewing wedding photographers? It can be hard to narrow down exactly what questions to ask during the interview process. You might have already come across a few articles talking about this topic, but not all of them are accurate. Especially because popular questions like “What gear do you use?” aren’t very useful ones when it comes to finding out if you want to work with a photographer or not. So, what questions should I be asking? Keep reading to see my thoughts on the matter!
The questions below I believe are beneficial for not only the couple looking for a photographer to hire for their wedding day, but also for the photographer to respond with a clear answer. A photographer/client relationship is all about trust, and these questions will help you build that trust and confidence in the choice of who you pick to capture your most precious day.
"Have you worked with my venue before?"
Now, this one isn’t exactly a dealbreaker, but in my opinion, still an important question to ask! If they have worked with your venue before, you can ask to see the gallery (or galleries) from that location. And if they don’t have experience with your venue, pay attention to how they answer your question. Are they confident in their ability to shoot at a venue they’ve never worked with before?". That type of confidence builds so much trust between you two, no matter how much or how little experience the photographer has.
"What’s your experience like with weddings?"
Every photographer is going to be at a different place in their journey. Some photographers are just starting out with weddings, and others might have years of experience in the field. No matter what, it’s important to know how much experience they have as a wedding photographer. Even if they have tons of experience as a second shooter, how many weddings have they photographed solo? How well they capture your day depends on what kind and how much experience they have!
"Can I see a few full galleries?"
When you ask this question, don’t be too broad! You want to see galleries that have a similar vibe/style/location as the wedding or elopement you’re planning. You don't need to see an outdoor elopement along the coast if you're planning an indoor wedding with 200 guests! Take a look at their use of natural light as well as artificial light during the reception/dancing if that’s something you're planning for your day. Look at the family formals and imagine your own family in these photos. Instagram photos and blogs on websites only show the best-of-the-best photos. Browsing through full galleries can ensure your confidence in the photographer to document your own day.
"How do you handle stressful family situations?"
At most weddings (especially if the wedding is on the bigger side), there’s usually some strained family relationships to be aware of. Whether it’s on your or your partner’s side (or both!), you want to make sure your photographer is confident in their ability to handle conflict. I usually ask my couples if there’s any preexisting tension to be aware of before we take the family photos. This lowers the probability of you and your partner being stressed during the family formals as well!
"Do you provide any planning resources?"
Ask about if they provide any resources for their couples during the planning process. Do they help you with the timeline? Could they help you determine the start time of your ceremony based on lighting? Do they help curate a family photo list with you? Many photographers take the time to create resources like this, so if that’s important to you, be sure to ask!
What’s your process as a photographer?
When choosing which photographer to work with, it’s important to know what their process looks like. What’s their typical turnaround time for gallery delivery? Will you receive sneak peek photos before the gallery? If so, when can you expect those? Having a clear picture of what to expect can eliminate a lot of stress and back and forth later on!
What’s your preferred method of contact?
You’ll definitely want to know what’s the best way to communicate with your photographer. Especially because they’re probably the vendor you’ll be talking to the most leading up to your wedding day. Some photographers exclusively prefer email over text, and some leave it totally up to you, the client. If you would rather talk to your photographer on the phone, ask if you two could set up calls throughout the wedding planning process. Talking about the best way for you two to communicate together as you move forward will be helpful when you're awaiting responses. Don’t forget, communication is key!
Have you worked with my videographer before?
Obviously this one only applies if you’re hiring a videographer for your wedding, so if you are, jot this question down. Ask if there’s anything you should know, or if they would like to connect with the videographer before the day of your wedding. If you’re curious about how photographers and videographers work together on your wedding day, I have an entire blog post talking about it!
Questions they might have answered on their website
Take a look at their editing style via their blogs/galleries. Is it consistent? Is it what you hope for on your own wedding day? Don't be afraid to ask the photographer to expand on their style if you have any questions about it. Is there something on their site stating their support for the LGBTQ+ community and that they believe Black Lives Matter? Even if you and your future spouse are straight, or aren't people of color, consider if it is important to you in having a photographer who supports these communities and celebrates their love stories across their website. Inclusivity matters.
Looking for a wedding photographer of your own?
If you’re still on the hunt for the perfect fit, I would love to chat with you about your day. To get in touch with me, you can fill out my contact form and I’ll get back to you ASAP!
Vendors for photos above -
Venue - Lotte Hotel in Downtown Seattle
Coordinator - Carly of Emerald Engagements
Florals - Love Blooms
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