Southwest Florida Photographers, Englewood, Fl
 

Choosing Your Photographer

1.  WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A PHOTOGRAPHER

Choosing Your Photographer is very important.  Photography is much more than the type of camera you have or what equipment is being used.  Alot of the times, photographers who are trying to break into the professional world say how hard it really is, especially when trying to break into the wedding business.  There are so many photographers out there and you can split them into three groups:  The Hobbyist, The Amateur, and The Professional.  As you scour the internet trying to find your perfect photographer,  you’ll come across alot of websites that will represent these three groups.  In this article, we will explain the classification of these groups has more to do with the right balance of soft-skills (business ethics and customer conduct) and hard- skills (technical knowledge). This section will also help you ask the right questions when you are in a meeting with your photographer and help you pay attention on how the he or she conducts themselves in front of you.


2.  EXPERTISE – TECHNICAL? ARTISTIC?

A professional level photographer( especially for weddings) must be technically knowledgeable and creative at the same time.  They must be quick on the fly and must be able to think on their feet.  Being technically sound, and being artistic are at the opposite ends of the spectrum and are two completely different styles.  A photographer who is technically knowledgeable, will be able to get the right shots at the correct exposure, regardless of lighting situations, while the artistic photographer will look for something new for each and every scene making sure their work is not only photos, but a piece of art.  The key is to try to find a photographer who is great at both, especially if you are shopping for your wedding.


3.  PERSONALITY – BEING PERSONABLE AND CHARASMATIC

In addition to technical and artistic skills, comes interpersonal skills.  In the photography business, you are dealing with people.  It is important to find someone who has good communication skills.  How well do they get along with their clients?  Are they outgoing, personable, funny, relaxed, etc?  These are the questions you need to keep in mind when sitting and getting to know your photographer.  If all else fails, ask yourself if you can see them shooting your event and getting along with everyone involved.  Do they seem caring and geniune about giving you the best possible experience, or are they only there to get you to sign a contract and pay the deposit?  A good photographer will be geniune with you and will ask you details about your event and if you have some ideas of your own.  For a good wedding photographer, they will ask you about the details of the dresses, tuxes and small details to help them visualize your wedding so they can be more than just the photographer, but more of an important role in the planning process.


4.  EXPERIENCE

After you get past the previous topics mentioned above, the next thing to figure out is how much experience the photographer has.  You shouldn’t judge how much experience they have by only looking at if they only do it part-time.  There are many wonderful photographers out there with day jobs that only work weekends. (ie, wedding photographers-most weddings are on the weekends)  This is why experience should be mostly judged on quality of work.  Obviously, the bigger the portfolio being shown will show more experience, but are the pictures good?   Ask to see the other forms of work other than what you are shopping for. For example,  If you are in the market for wedding photography, ask to see family, senior, baby portraits as well,(if they do other types of photography)  This will give you a good idea on how well rounded your photographer is.


5.  QUALITY VS QUANTITY

Dont get caught up on the amount of products that the photographer is offering.  The number one thing you should be concerned about is the quality of work.  Lets define quality:  Quality is based on sharpness, color, composition, and emotional value.  When was the last time you saw a photo that tugged at your heart because it was so romantic or dropped your jaw because the colors were so vibrant?  We all know quality photographs when we see it, and even more, we all know bad quality images as well.  Dont turn away a photographer that will offer quality prints or quality digital images, but doesn’t offer you a robust package full of prints, enlargements, and albums.  At the end of the day,  its the quality of images that will last forever…especially digital images.  If you are wanting extra products that maybe the photographer doesnt offer,  keep in mind that with the advances of digital image processing,  there are more places to have those products made and you can always have them done through different image processing companies.  Just be sure the photographer will offer you the digital files with the rights to print if you choose to make your own products and order your own prints.


6.  MULTIPLE PHOTOGRAPHERS

This has more to do with event photography such as weddings, but the question i get asked a lot is, “why do we need two photographers”  You can think of an event such as a wedding, like a story.  A story that can only be written once, because once that event is over, there is no turning back to edit the pages or going back to retake a photo.  In the story, you can think of the bride and groom as the main story.  However, there might be a lot of different side stories that are going on at the same time.  The purpose of a second photographer is to capture these little side stories such as a picture of the mothers crying during the ceremony or an uncle being silly during the dollar dance etc.  As the main photographer cannot be everywhere at once covering everything, we usually recommend two photographers.   Weddings are important, and more often than not, people forget to treat their events as a book; a book full of chapters that will surely be captured, with a second photographer to cover as much detail as you can about your special day.