How To: Plan Dreamy Wedding Photos ♡
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This is our latest eBook and it’s all about getting the dreamiest wedding photos possible!
You can read the PDF version by clicking on the picture of the front cover. Or you can read by scrolling down to the text below.
How To: Get Dreamy Wedding Photos
Part 1 of this 3 part series is about booking the right photographer for you.
To be specific – you’re looking for the photographer who is capable of capturing and creating your dream wedding photos.
These are unique to your event and your idea of what your dream wedding photos will be. So this guide is about helping you choose the wedding photographer who can make that happen.
There are heaps of factors that go into making this decision, but we decided to focus on the 3 main things to remember.
Step 1. Think About Your Ideal Outcome
If someone asked you why you were booking a professional wedding photographer, what would you say?
Most couples will say they don’t want photos that suck! But that’s a given…
If your goal is to get some photos taken and you don’t care so much about the outcome, then don’t pay much attention to this step.
But if you have even a slight idea of what you want your photos to look like, then you need to do some thinking.
The reality is that not every option is going to produce the same results.
You need to weigh up cost, time involved, photographer’s style and abilities. Then there are environmental and situational factors like the venue and its characteristics, the weather, time of day, temperature (seriously!) and much more.
Grab a pen and paper. Then write down a description of your dream photos. Dot points are fine. Be messy. Let’s be real about this.
Now take your Dream List and hold it high. The List is what you’ll use to inform your choice.
It sounds simple, but distilling your motivations down will make your decision process a lot more efficient, less emotional and more logical, and much more likely to be successful.
Step 2. Talk to your wedding photographer –
It sounds crazy, but in a world where communication has never been easier, people often neglect to communicate.
The number two thing we suggest that every couple do is find people who they are happy to work with.
Call them on the telephone, do a video chat, meet for a coffee, go for a stroll – whatever! Just get to know them a little bit, even if it’s only briefly.
After all, it’s very important that you all get along and can give each other that valuable and necessary mutual respect. A wedding can be a high emotion, stressful and very busy time for all.
Ideally, everyone needs to be comfortable, happy and motivated to make excellent photos happen.
Most important – Everyone needs to be honest, open and up-front about their ideas, expectations, and capabilities.
You should be able to discuss your wants and needs openly with a photographer who is willing and able to bring them to life.
Remember The List? It’s time to use it. Everyone needs to be on the same page.
Step 3. Ask the right questions!
The following are examples of the questions that you should ask a photographer before you make a booking, together with an idea of how they should answer.
This one can get a little bit tricky if you haven’t had much exposure to photography (see what I did there, haha!)
But it doesn’t have to be difficult.
Question – What gear do you use?
This one is very important. If you want a high quality set of images that you can cherish forever, then you’ll want them made with professional quality equipment.
Unfortunately, cheaper cameras are not capable of making the highly detailed, high- resolution images a professional wedding photographer needs to produce.
This becomes especially important in low light situations, when you want to make prints of the photos, when trying to enlarge certain pictures for cropping, or making photo albums.
You want to hear that a photographer is using high-end DSLR cameras from Nikon or Canon. We exclusively use Canon 1D and 5D models with Canon’s best quality “L” series lenses.
Ask them to name their camera, then take that info and do a search on Google. If it doesn’t look expensive and isn’t made by Canon or Nikon then chances are it won’t be up to the task.
With this gear you get beautiful clarity, the freedom to expand and print your images however you want, and the insane amounts of detail that your big day deserves.
Remember – It is essential that the camera is up to the task. The ONLY cameras we recommend are:
- Canon 5D MK III and up to MK IV (MK II and below are quite old now)
- Canon 1Ds MK III for age (These are quite expensive and generally only owned by professionals, like us!)
- Nikon D4 or newer D5 (not as common as Canon, but an awesome camera init’s own right)
- Nikon D850 (last resort)
Question – How will you deliver my photos?
It is now easier than ever to send and archive your photos thanks to the Internet!
We store our customer’s pictures on Dropbox.com. So they’ll be safe and secure for as long as you need them to be.
Dropbox is a trusted cloud storage option. It’s safe, extremely secure, and allows you to download your photos from anywhere with an Internet connection. Dropbox even has a smartphone app for convenience.
Needless to say, this is a much better process than mailing an easily damaged or lost CD or USB stick.
These cheaper options are often not archival quality, either. So your images will not last on a CD over time. And the same is true for USB sticks, with an average data lifespan of just 10 years (and that’s for a GOOD one!)
Of course there are physical options like printing and framing – we can connect you with professionals who will do the best job possible.
Question – How do you deal with different kinds of light?
This one is getting a little bit scary for those who aren’t great with a camera. But it’s very important.
Why? Because the quality of light present when a photo is made directly reflects how the photo will turn out.
So, if you want natural wedding photography style photos then you’ll want a photographer who knows how to use their camera in bright light (like sunlight) and shadow (like indoor light or afternoon shade).
If you want brightly lit, flash or tungsten lit photos then you’ll want a photographer who knows how to control all kinds of light, in any environment, to their advantage. Including light that they might choose to add.
And if your wedding is going to be a bit of everything like they usually are – book a pro that loves a challenge and knows their stuff.
Remember, the answer you’re looking for should reflect what kind of photos you want, or rather how you want them to look.
We are proud to say we work with any and every kind of light situation and can make great photos in any environment.
This is where experience, practice and artistic ability come into play, and that’s the advantage you’re hiring when you book us.
Nobody wants to look back on what is supposed to be a day full of light and energy with dim or shadowy photos!
Step 4. Start your wedding photo plan –
Just like the rest of your wedding, your photos need a plan, too! So, it’s time to start making one now that you’ve written down your ideals and spoken with your photographer. You can get motivated by thinking of your plan like a roadmap to wedding photo amazingness!
The main things you want to think about covering are –
- If you haven’t already chosen or booked a wedding venue – make sure you pick one with lots of natural light but also some nice shelter from the bright sun.
- The actual photos you need to make photo opportunities for. Look out for Part 2 of this eBook – Wedding Photo Checklist.
- The amount of time you’ll need for each photo opportunity and/or the time in which these photos will be taken in blocks. Part 3: Wedding Photo Schedule covers this.
- Look into your venue and work with your photographer on the best locations for photo opportunities.
- Make sure you have enough light (we cover this later, too!)
- Always have a plan B just in case (we cover this too!)
If all of this seems like too much for now then don’t worry! We go through this and more at during your 30 minute photo plan session, where we’ll cover these points and decide how to get you amazing wedding photos.
Thanks for reading! Be sure to look out for Part 2 + Part 3
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