So a few weeks ago, my talented and good friend Justin Jacques (of Indie Wedding DJ fame) asked me to participate in his podcast series, “The Wedding Insider”. In this series, he interviews a variety of pros from the Toronto wedding industry and together they discuss what engaged couples can do to make their weddings awesome.
Despite how squeamish it makes me to watch and hear myself (ugh), I promised Justin that I would share this so here it is! (Also, I’m totally embarrassed with, like, how often I say “like” in real life. It’s, like, horrible.)
Admittedly, it does require a fair investment of time to delve into so here are some of the suggestions I made on how to give your photographer the best chance of creating stunning wedding photos for you:
1. Find people who create work that you love.
Of course, this seems so obvious that I shouldn’t even say it but I will anyway. After the wedding magic is over, your photos will be one of the precious few tangible things you will have as proof that it even happened. The flowers will wilt, the chairs will be returned, and you might not ever wear your dress again. But your wedding photos have the potential to outlive you and could even find their way to a place of prominence at your grandchildren’s wedding. To me, that makes those photographs pretty darn important.
That said, you want to make sure that those photos are going to be captured by someone who sees the world (and, thus, your wedding) in a way that you will absolutely adore. Of course, if you don’t care about reliving those memories or seeing how utterly amazing you looked or remembering how much fun everyone had — then skip this part.
2. Choose to work with someone that you can trust.
Often times, our day as wedding photographers start when people are getting ready. It’s not unusual for us to find ourselves in a bedroom full of half-clothed people. You might even be one of them. And this photographer that you’ve hired will be there to witness it all. For this reason alone, I think it’s pretty important that this person you’ve chosen to work with is someone you trust.
Plus planning a wedding can be, as some say, Stress-full. We all know that normal, everyday life is busy enough already. And then you need to plan a wedding on top of it all? If only to make life easier for yourself, choose to work with people who make the whole process smoother, not harder. And if you’ve chosen a photographer that makes you feel good and can confidently assure you that all is taken care of, I believe that resulting peace of mind is money well-spent.
3. Communication is key.
As I have a more photojournalistic / documentary-style approach to photographing weddings, I like to have as. much. info. as. possible. We need to be ready to respond to whatever is happening in front of us, in real time, so if we’re given a minute-by-minute itinerary that the planner or DJ has made in advance, we LOVE it. Anything that helps us to better anticipate or plan for how the day is going to go is incredibly valuable.
You can go ahead and plan a surprise for your spouse or your guests, but don’t keep any surprises from your photographer. Those are the moments you want us to be ready for!
4. When choosing a venue, pay attention to your first impression.
The venue you choose will be the backdrop to all of your wedding photos. And if a place, free of any adornments or decorations, has the power to put a flutter in your belly the very first time you see it, it likely will help make for great photos too.
But if, when you walk in the door, it feels dark or brings to mind a long list of things you’d have to do to make it better, it might not be so good for photos either.
It doesn’t have to be fancy but a place that enjoys beautiful light is something that I feel we all experience instinctually, and that’s a feeling I believe is worth paying attention to. Coincidentally, beautiful light helps make beautiful photos.
5. Whatever you choose to wear, whether it’s your make-up or your shoes, be comfortable.
Simply put, the more comfortable you are with what your wearing or with what you look like, the more confident you will feel. And as long as that puts a big, happy smile on your face, that’s all I need!
If you’d like to hear more, plus learn a little bit about how I became a wedding photographer in the first place, feel free to go on and have a listen on the Indie Wedding DJ blog here!