When planning a wedding, there are several “big ticket” items on the planning checklist that cause a lot of stress for the bride and her groom. Those items include, but are not limited to, the wedding cake, the dress, the venue, and of course, the photographer. In some ways the photographer is the most important decision for the wedding besides the partners themselves —ha! But seriously, the photographer is the one person who determines how your special day will be captured for the rest of time. We cannot go back in time to relive our most precious memories, but we can allow our imaginations to be transported by beautiful photographs.
And so, as you’re planning your wedding, make sure to dedicate plenty of time and research in the choosing of your photographer. Do not pick the first option that presents itself to you because you may ruefully regret that decision 10 years down the line when all you have is a shoddy stack of uninspiring photographs that do not capture the spirit of your memories.
So how soon should you pin down your photographer before the big day? Well, the sooner the better to be frank. Here’s the deal, there are a lot of people out there who call themselves photographers simply because they own a nice camera. But it takes more than nice equipment to create memorable, artistic images. A good photographer can be hard to find when you find yourself sorting through piles upon piles of mediocre “talent”.
Smart brides and wedding planners know this. They also know that because supply is so limited on the best of the best, those great photographers tend to get booked up very quickly. Remember, a photographer for your wedding is going to be spending a lot of time with you. Depending on what you hire them for, they will be your shadow for at least one entire day. That doesn’t include if you decide to take engagement photos, or bridal photos, or anything else extra. That means that a photographer doesn’t have that many days to go around as far as clients go. You want to make sure you get to them early before their schedules are totally booked.
This is especially true if you have planned your wedding during peak wedding season. Peak wedding season is, obviously, from June-August. Summer weddings are great. The air is warm. The weather is less volatile. The trees are green and flowers are abloom. Of course you want a summer wedding….but so does everyone else. Any photographer worth their stuff will likely be booked at least six months out.
As soon as you get engaged and set the date, start looking at photographers. Go online and flip through as many portfolios as you can stomach. Call around and ask for meetings and quotes. You will not regret making this one decision early-on in the planning process, I promise. You will also not regret spending money on a quality professional who will do your most special day the justice it deserves.