April 24, 2019 / Our Blog
8 Tips on how to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer for your big day
This little article is a general guide that we would encourage people to read through when searching for a Leeds wedding photographer(s).
- How to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer for your big day
- 1. How to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer
- 2. Wedding photography prices and packages
- 3. Where to begin looking for your wedding photographer?
- 4. What wedding photography style would suit your day best?
- 5. Photographer skills, equipment and insurance
- 6. Does the photographer need a schedule?
- 7. Do you get along with them?
- 8. Book them!
How to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer for your big day
This little article is a general guide that we would encourage people to read through when searching for a Leeds wedding photographer. We genuinely feel that if you follow the advice in this article, you will be ecstatic with your wedding photographs.
Stories Of I Do know that when it comes to wedding decisions, choosing your wedding photographer is one of the most important ones. Long after your wedding day, all that remains are your happy memories. We make sure your wedding photographs will enrich these moments. This advice is written from our perspective, both as a married couple as well as wedding photographers.
We were voted one of the 6 best wedding photographers in Yorkshire by Zankyou – https://www.zankyou.co.uk/p/the-6-best-wedding-photographers-in-yorkshire
1. How to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer
Why is choosing the right wedding photographer so important? Well, wedding days are all different. A good, well-established photography team will be prepared for any occasion and can use their knowledge of light and composition to enhance your photographs. We love to capture moments you didn’t even realise happened at your wedding. You want a photography team that will make the most of your ideal venue, who won’t be thrown by adverse weather conditions, unforeseen time delays, or equipment failure. As award-winning, West Yorkshire wedding photographers, we know how our work influences the enjoyment of your day.
For this reason, we suggest that you prioritise your wedding photography selection. Your decision is a crucial area that will affect the running of your wedding day, before, during and long after the festivities.
2. Wedding photography prices and packages
Pricing is a serious consideration for most couples. That said when it comes to finding the right wedding photographer for you as a couple, it isn’t a decision that can be made based solely on the most competitive price.
Choose a wedding photographer whose work, editing style and approach you fall in love with. Take a more detailed look at the photographer’s portfolio, and you will be able to tell how the photographer works in capturing their images. Are the pictures posed? Candid? Full of laughter? Intimate? Finding the perfect photographer will let you rest easy on the days leading up to your wedding and during.
We suggest focusing on the photographer’s portfolio to see how they make you feel. Having your wedding ceremony captured in the best way possible should be your priority. Wedding photography pricing structures vary, and it can be complicated or hidden publically. Be careful as some photographers prices can quickly escalate or have hidden fees. To avoid unpleasant surprises make sure that you have checked any hidden fees such as watermark removal that some photographers will require. It is very easy to see how hidden costs can be overlooked. Some photographers may not give high-resolution images. This is something to carefully study, as purchasing prints for friends and family can add up. Stories Of I Do love photographing and being busy, so we keep our packages simple and upfront so our clients can’t get confused. We always give high resolution, unwatermarked images with a free license to print for personal use.
Most wedding photographers allow you to book them and add extras on to your package after the wedding. We offer additional extras for the 12 months following the wedding. It leaves plenty of time for decisions and extra funds after the wedding expenses.
3. Where to begin looking for your wedding photographer?
A lot of our work now comes through word of mouth. It is so beautiful photographing someone’s wedding day after meeting them as a bridesmaid. Ask recently married friends and look at the style of their wedding photography. If you feel it would be a good fit for you both, then ask them about their experience and what it was like working with their photographer.
There is nothing like benefiting from the experience of others. Pay attention to the reviews of others. A photographer’s website may look fabulous, but its best to know what kind of reputation they have among their past customers.
It is essential not to choose the first photographer you see or one recommended by the wedding venue. The venue may well receive payment for the referrals they make so look around to find the perfect fit. Any good referral or review for wedding photography should be based on quality and service, not on a commission.
Google is also most peoples go to and when you start searching you will find that there are a plethora of Leeds wedding photographers to search through. It is worthwhile making a shortlist to compare. We are often found through couples searching for wedding photographs from your wedding venue. Brides and grooms to be can see how well we know the venue and how we used the perfect backdrop to capture your day. There are so many wedding venues in Leeds, from Denton Hall, a grade I listed building, through to the modern, industrial Leeds City centre. We created a list of 12 wedding venues in Leeds. Whichever of the wedding venues Leeds has to offer you choose; any is the perfect setting for your big day.
Finally, don’t feel restricted by location; most photographers will travel. No matter where you are getting married if you love a particular photographers work then it is worth enquiring. Many photographers travel, so don’t feel you are limited to finding a photographer within your local area. We have photographed weddings throughout the UK. Most photographers will have additional travel expenses. If you find a photographer that you love then this may be a small cost for ensuring your book the perfect wedding photographer to capture your special day.
4. What wedding photography style would suit your day best?
Some photographers offer highly stylized shoots with many formal pictures. Others have a fine art approach with a distinctive photographer’s style. Traditional photographers can be extremely involved throughout the wedding day. You may prefer their production of posed shots and the time they will spend arranging you both so that every detail looks the way they like.
Stories Of I Do are Photojournalistic and Reportage wedding photographers. We have found that this is a crucial role for us as wedding photographers. As photojournalists, we rarely ask individuals to pose. We have a range of prompts and a little direction to get natural and authentic moments. We prefer to capture people in their natural behaviours. We believe that a wedding photographer should capture natural, documentary-style photographs of people belly laughing, happy tears, hugging, kissing and dancefloor antics. All of those little moments can quickly go unnoticed. We are always ready to capture these shots and not sat down, waiting for the next event on the schedule. An inexperienced or an undedicated photographer can miss amazing moments.
It’s also important to have a record of all those little details that so much thought went in to, they all combine to tell the ‘story of your day’.
Often our brides and grooms want a mix of photographic styles. Our clients want natural photographs, capturing everything from their friends laughing to their parents crying. We believe that there is a place for group photographs, reportage photos and portrait photographs on your wedding day. Good balance keeps this time enjoyable, stress-free and fun. Group family photographs are the one’s parents, and grandparents will treasure forever.
Looking around you will find that every wedding photographer works in a different style. Some love traditional portraits, and others will prefer to move around and mingle with guests to capture your day reportage style. Find a photographer who photographs and edits in the method that best reflects the essence of you and your wedding. View lots of whole full albums to ensure their style, and work matches what you want. It is essential for you and your special day how it will be captured and told.
5. Photographer skills, equipment and insurance
A wedding photographer should be able to work with lighting and different environments, organise a group shot and blend into the background to take some stunning photographs. With wedding photography, there are an infinite variety of situations that can present themselves.
Something else to confirm is that the photographers you book are also fully insured. Some wedding venues require this for a photographer to attend.
When choosing your wedding photographer look at lots of examples of their work, not just their favourite shots. Checking out a photographers blog can help to see what they take throughout the full day. If they have a blog take a look at weddings they have photographed at the same time of year to see how they handle those light and weather conditions.
Always check that the photographer has a backup camera. In the unlikely situation, their camera breaks or they have an accident you want to know that the day will still run smoothly! Your wedding photographer should have at least two cameras and a couple of lenses. We work as a team of two wedding photographers, both with back up cameras. We love working together as it means we can capture every detail of the day from two angles.
6. Does the photographer need a schedule?
As wedding photographers, we are flexible to requests. It is your wedding, so we make sure to be helpful and listen to your requirements. Our belief is that a marriage is not a photo shoot despite there being many opportunities for brilliant photographs. We like to photograph the day with as little interruption and interference as possible. Its important that all couples feel that your photographer understands your needs on the day.
We capture the day and everything that happens so a clear, concise schedule should suffice. A clear running schedule of the day is helpful, but a list with obvious shots is not necessary. If there is anything particularly unique or individual that you would like to be photographed, then it is always helpful to let your photographer know about this ahead of time.
The only list we ask for is a limited list of group family formal photographs should the couples want this. Having this list means we can organise the next family members and keep this time to a minimum so that couples can get back to their wedding receptions. Our recommendation is for the brides and grooms to decide on around 10 or fewer formal group photographs.
A good schedule is so important so that your wedding day won’t feel rushed. We do prefer photographing in a relaxed, journalistic style – going unnoticed to capture the natural moments of the day with a little time for a few portraits! A good schedule gives plenty of time to talk for you to speak with your guests and get the photographs taken that you want. We always want to make sure your day is planned with plenty of time for photos…and plenty of time for everyone to enjoy the moment!
After the group photographs its nice to photograph the newlyweds alone, it is in having that quiet time to create beautiful wedding portraits that you will treasure forever and a little moment just the two of you. Often our brides and grooms let us know how much they have enjoyed the portrait photography time together as the only quiet time that they have during the day! It is best to find a beautiful place away from wedding guests; there is nothing worse than an audience of aunties wanting to capture the same photographs as your professional photographer on their phones. Your big day might be in a grade ii listed building with stunning views or a country house with a golf course, wherever you choose there is somewhere we can find for your portraits.
7. Do you get along with them?
Last of all but one of the most important things we can think to mention is to make sure the wedding photographer you choose is your cup of tea. Make sure you feel comfortable and relaxed with them and that your personalities work together. You will be spending the most special day of your life in the company of your photographer so making sure you get along with them is very important.
8. Book them!
Word of mouth recommendations are often the most useful as you know that they were pleased with the service they received. When looking for photographers, it’s still great to see their reviews and feedback from previous delighted customers. Knowing their glowing reputation can give you added reassurance and peace of mind. Once you have a list of promising looking photographers, check out their websites, blog posts and portfolio thoroughly. Doing this will make sure you love their work and will give you a good idea of their personality and professionalism. Busy wedding photographers should have lots of up-to-date, consistent examples of weddings. This will show you their style of shooting and processing. Then get in touch with your favourite to see whether they are available on your wedding date, and ask for a meet up for a chat or if they have a brochure.
You may love their work so much that you book them straight away. The best photographers get booked up years in advance so if you fall in love with a photographer and they have your date available get booked in. There is nothing worse for us than couples disappointed that they waited to book us. Book your photographer early to ensure you’re getting the perfect one for your day. Many professional wedding photographers will be taking bookings up to 2 years in advance, and sometimes more! We currently have a five-year calendar diary. Popular dates such as spring and summer Saturdays are the first to go. So here is our warning. We have found so many couples are upset when they get in touch a couple of months in advance, and we are not available for their day. If you want the best for your big day make sure you book as soon as you can.
When you choose to book your photographer, they will usually ask you for a deposit to secure the date and will send you through a contract. Check that you are happy with all the terms and conditions but don’t delay in booking as you may lose the date to someone else! Wedding photographers can quickly be booked three years in advance, so if you have found a photographer whose work you love, you get along with and are available on your date, then get them booked. Once your venue and date is confirmed, we recommend getting your wedding photographer booked in next.
Always be mindful of your budget and look at their reputation. Real couple reviews are the most honest way to see how they work. Look through your contract and their blog posts to see what you get in the end and make sure you feel comfortable around them.
Your wedding photographs will be with you forever. Make sure that you take the time to choose the perfect Leeds wedding photographer who will make your day memorable. We as wedding photographers do not want you to pick us purely for our price. We want to work with clients who choose us because they identify with our style and the art we produce. We love to connect with every one of our couples; it is what makes us so excited about our work. If you like what you see here and are looking for a team of two wedding photographers to document your wedding day, then please do get in touch – we would love to help!