Why should you choose a Professional Wedding Photographer above FRiend-wIth-Cool-Camera (aka Frikkie)?
These days weddings cost a lot of money, causing most couples to budget carefully when organizing the wedding of their dreams. So why not find a friend or uncle with a dSLR to take a couple of shots and cut a corner as " an expensive camera = great pictures"?
Well, not all true, as there are quite a few more skills required than just point and snap-snap-snap to deliver professional quality images at a wedding. It does not mean that you need to hire the most expensive photographer, but skimping on a photographer may result in miserable memories. Here is a couple of things to consider why a Professional Wedding Photographer would be an advantage:
EXPERIENCE AND SKILL
A typical wedding day are excitingly fast-paced (considering the months of planning, coming together all at the same time)! Wedding photographers have to be master of multiple photography disciplines, as they have no luxury of a re-shoot if things don't turn out despite the ease of digital photography. In fact, that is why many consider wedding photography to be one of the most challenging and high-pressure photography jobs.
Thus before you make your decision: Consider how long has the photographer been in business, as experience is really important on the day of the wedding. Don't leave your photos to chance by hiring an amateur photographer. A Professional Photographer has experience with his/her gear, composition, uncontrolled lighting and checking the background for unwanted objects, plus an eye for interesting angles while anticipating moments without intruding! Setting your photographs in a totally different league, knowing how to tell a story through pictures ... Will "Frikkie" or the amateur be able to do this? Chances are that they won't.
Can Frikkie or the amateur produce consistent quality images throughout your whole wedding ? A way to establish this, is to ask to see a full set of wedding photos of a real wedding. You have to look for a variety of types of photographs: attention to detail, the capability of capturing portraits, candids, photo-journalistic moments plus artistic angles and compositions. And lastly, but not least: consistent image quality looking at focus points & grain & sharpness.
EQUIPMENT & BACK-UP EQUIPMENT
Many Professional Photographers are artists who take their work very seriously. They will invest in the best professional equipment they can afford to get the job done well! They will have experience with their gear (bodies, collection of lenses, lighting and accessories), knowing it inside out - what settings or lense to use in what situation without hesitation.. Pros will have all equipment cleaned, adjusted, and calibrated on a regular basis. They will have enough memory plus more, no exceptions. They will have backup gear, no exceptions. Most Pros also have an assistant (or 2nd photographer) ensuring more coverage. Remember: "Anyone can buy the most expensive cookware available, but that doesn't make them a Top Chef."
Your photographer will be taking hundreds of photos, working hard behind the scenes to capture all your memories during the biggest day of your life. And after the wedding the dedication does not stop. A Professional Photographer, will have the correct workflow and system to prevent data loss. And each image will be reviewed and potentially enhanced, retouched or artistically manipulated for you to enjoy for years to come. Remember, this time-consuming attention to detail is often what dictates the higher costs. A bonus in working with a Pro is that you will also have access to professionally designed albums, prints and more. Hence my slogan - "investing in something beautiful... ietsie moois vir altyd!"
100% DEDICATION TO YOU
A Professional Photographer will take the time to get to know you before the wedding: finding out what is important to you. Getting to know your style, your story, your likes and dislikes. He/she will know your venue ahead of time (either because of working there or assessing it beforehand) suggesting the best areas to take photographs. He/she will assist and accommodate you with your schedule during the day, from your complicated family structure to your church's rules about photography. A Pro Photographer will have experience in working under pressure: so if something goes wrong - be assured he/she has likely seen it all before and will not start panicking.
Regardless of who you choose it is important to thoroughly check their history of the type of shoot you are looking for, as well as checking their portfolios and being at ease with their personality. Before you make your final decision: realize the value of experience and skill, consistency, equipment, post-processing and 100% dedication to you : all worth your photographer's weight in gold!
This blog was written by Ingrid Combrinck. Visit her profile page here.