Top 5 mistakes to avoid when booking a wedding photographer

Here are the most common pitfalls & mistakes to avoid when booking your wedding photographer.

As your big day is on the horizon, you’re probably knees-deep in all the wedding planning madness.

But amidst the chaos of finding the best wedding venue and organising every little detail of your wedding day, don’t overlook one of the most crucial elements of your special day: your wedding photographer.

After all, your wedding day will be over before you know it…

…the leftovers get cold, the music stops playing, and the lights go out. Your guests will go home, the flowers will start to wither, and eventually, even the memories of your wedding will start to fade.

But do you know what never fades?

Your wedding photos. Which is EXACTLY why arranging your wedding photography should be at the top of your priority list.

But when it comes to hiring the best photographer for them, there are a handful of common mistakes that couples make when booking their wedding photographer. Unfortunately, more often than not, these mistakes result in the couple ending up with feelings of regret, disappointment, and frustration.

Now, the good news is that when it comes to your wedding, you can totally avoid these mistakes if you know what to look out for.

So, as an enthusiastic wedding photographer who has seen my fair share of “oops” moments, I’m here to give you the inside scoop on common mistakes couples often make when it comes to choosing their perfect wedding photographer. Let’s dive in!

Mistake #1: Waiting Until The Last Minute

At times when you’re feeling THIS overwhelmed & stressed out, procrastination feels kinda good, doesn’t it?

But if you want to make sure you’ll be left with beautiful wedding photos, don’t sit on booking your photographer for too long. In fact, booking your wedding photographer should be at the top of your priority list.

Lemme explain…

The best wedding photographers get snatched up faster than you can say “I do”, and it’s not rare for us to be booked out for certain dates years in advance. Especially for popular dates – finding a decent photographer will become more and more challenging the longer you wait.

And this isn’t even some sort of twisted marketing tactic designed to rush you into making a decision either…

For example, I’ve lost count of the number of couples I’ve had to decline because someone else took their place. To be fair, these were the couples who took too long to enquire or actually lock me in. So eventually, another couple swooped in and took their place. And I can’t be the only one!

So, don’t wait until it’s too late! Invest some time & effort into finding a wedding photographer who seems right to you, and enquire as soon as possible. And once you’ve enquired? Lock them in asap – don’t wait!

This will spare you the disappointment of losing out on the once-in-a-lifetime opportunity of having your perfect photographer capture the perfect day when you get married.

Mistake #2: Not Meeting Your Photographer

Your connection with your photographer is everything. And I mean EVERYTHING.

After all, as photographers, we do more than just snap a few breathtaking wedding photos…

Our job includes helping you feel confident & beautiful in front of the camera (or better yet: helping you forget about the camera altogether). We hype you up, ease your stress, and use our experience to help you with other aspects of your wedding planning too.

So, it’s important to make sure that you vibe with your wedding photographer before the big event.

The easiest way to do that is to have an in-person consultation meeting to get acquainted, go over the details, and make sure that their personality aligns with what you envision for your special day.

But I like to take it one step further…

I always offer my couples the chance to do an engagement shoot with me a few months before their weddings. This way, not only do they get to know me better, but they can actually experience what it’s like to have me as their photographer – and double-check if my photography style is in tune with what they’re looking for. Click here to read my blog post about more surprising benefits of having an engagement photoshoot!

Mistake #3: Not Researching Their Portfolio Thoroughly

Don’t judge a book by its cover…
…unless that book is filled with lackluster photos from someone claiming to be a professional photographer.

The truth is, that anyone can claim to be a wedding photographer. With emphasis on the word: “claim”

I mean, at first glance, it doesn’t seem so hard to snap a few photos and hope for some of them to turn out alright, does it?

Now, to ensure they take high-quality, beautiful wedding photos, someone not only needs expensive professional photography equipment – but they need to know how to use that equipment. They need to know how to be in the right place at the right time to capture all the truly once-in-a-lifetime moments without constantly being in your way.

So sure, your photographer should have a dual slot camera (to make sure they have immediate backup in case one card goes corrupt), and other backup gear too. But they should also know how to shoot in all sorts of lighting conditions – during midday, nighttime, cloudy weather, and even indoors. Don’t book a photographer who’s only willing to show you their golden hour shots – after all, that’s kinda like cheating…

And don’t even get me started on the editing! Even if the raw photo itself captures the most beautiful moments of your lives perfectly, a professional wedding photographer should know how to bring out the small little details of each photo to turn your frozen memories into breathtaking, heartwarming art. Otherwise it’s just an emotionless picture that you won’t look at anyways…

But being a wedding photographer is more than just about snapping a few photos at a wedding and then making your memories come to life. Our jobs include everything from supporting you throughout your wedding planning process – all the way to addressing any last minute emergencies that may pop up on the spot.

No matter what it may seem like from the outside, it’s a tough job with A LOT of responsibility. And you want to make sure you book a photographer who can handle the pressure, be there for you, and still do an incredible job of capturing your wedding.

So, to avoid regrets, take some time to browse through your photographer’s portfolio and see if their photography style resonates with you – make sure you love their work! Also, read their Google reviews (yes, our couples tend to rate us on Google) to see what others have said about working with them.

Mistake #4: Forgetting to Discuss All-Inclusive Packages

When discussing packages with potential photographers, make sure that you always know what you’re getting. This way, you can avoid unpleasant surprises later on – or even worse: the awkward situation of having to negotiate an upgrade on your wedding day.

Now, I – for example – offer unlimited wedding day coverage in all my photography packages. But many photographers will just let you book them for a certain number of hours instead (and have you pay extra to upgrade) – so if you go with such a photographer, make sure to account for that!

The number of edited photos received, access to your online gallery, and prints, albums, and travel fees are all things you should discuss with your photographer before locking them in. After all, it’s better for everyone to spend an extra 10-15 minutes going over their pricing guide & packages to make sure you know what is & isn’t included. This will help avoid future frustration for both you and your photographer!

Mistake #5: Ignoring Personality Clashes

You might have found an incredibly talented professional photographer whose work speaks volumes – but if your personalities clash it could spell disaster.

After all, a photographer is kind of like a guest at your wedding. Okay, not exactly, but kind of. And you wouldn’t want someone you absolutely can’t stand to be there with you and share your most sacred and most intimate moments.

So, if your personalities clash with your photographer’s, you’ll just experience more stress & frustration whenever they’re around.

And trust me: they’ll be around all the time on your wedding day (to be fair: you’d kinda want them to be there and capture everything for you).

Plus, everyone knows that great photos – the shots you want – are created when you relax and enjoy the day. Now, that’s not a small ask on the biggest day of your life. So, you’ll want a photographer who you connect with and who will make sure you feel natural and relaxed throughout your entire wedding.

So there you have it – five common wedding photography mistakes to avoid when choosing your wedding photographer. 

If these points resonate with where you are right now in this whirlwind journey called ‘wedding planning’, then take this advice as more than just words… Take them as friendly nudges towards making informed choices on one of the most important aspects leading up to your “happily ever after”.

And hey, if you’re still on the lookout for a photographer to capture your beautiful wedding anywhere in Australia, make sure you don’t miss out on your FREE wedding photography consultation call with me. There, I’ll help you find answers to any questions you might still have, and who knows – I just might be the one you’ll end up choosing to document the story of your day.