Unlike the work of your other wedding vendors(music, flowers, arrangement, cake) photographs aren't things you can hear, smell, taste or even see at first - you don't really know what you are getting until after the fact.
That means careful research and being selective regarding professional skills, artistic style and personal demeneor are extra important when choosing your photographer. Before you begin reseaching photographers, you will need first decide what type of photography style you prefer, as that will help determine which kind of photographer you'll want shooting your wedding. Do any of the following appeal to you?
Documentary: they are candid or spontaneous pictures (read: not styled) of people, decor and the action. With a purely photo - journalistic photographer, you'll very rarely see people staring at the camera—the photos capture the moments exactly as they happened, and together they tell a story.
Portraiture: If you prefer classic portraits (think: your parents' wedding album), go with a traditional photographer who specializes in portraiture. These are posed shots of the two of you, your friends and family in front of various backdrops.
Fine Art: Though it's similar to documentary photography, this style gives the shooter greater artistic license to infuse their particular point of view and style into your photographs. So while the shots reflect reality, it's the photographer's reality. The photos are dramatic and gorgeous, but are—or look as though they were—shot on film with a grainier, dreamier, more muted appearance.
Many wedding photographers can do a blend of portraiture and documentary-style shots, and will do a mix of black-and-white and color images, but if there's a special style you love, make sure to focus on photographers who specialize in it.
How important is it for the couple to spend time with their photographer before the wedding?
Important - Make sure your personalities mesh
"If you don't meet your photographer before the wedding, even just on Skype, you're taking a risk, because you don't know if you click. This person is going to be with you all day long, on one of the most important days of your lives, so it's vital you feel comfortable with them. I often meet my couples twice - once to visit the venue with them, and again just for a cuppa and a chat. Also, if the photographer gets to know you well, they will be more emotionally invested in the day - at my most recent wedding I actually teared up during the speeches! Wedding photographers aren't just suppliers, they're one of the most important guests at your wedding."
Post- production details
It usually takes at least a month to get all those photo proofs back from your photographer. Why? Your photographer is shooting enormous raw files far bigger than your typical JPG. Shooting raw files gives your photographer greater ability to correct the photo, but it also takes a longer time to upload, process and edit all those files (in order to correct color levels and so on). It varies, but many photographers say that they spend an additional 40 hours editing images from a single wedding, so it can take up to six to eight weeks (or longer, depending on the photographer and how busy they are) to get proofs back.
Here's what to ask:
How many images should I expect?
Will they be high resolution or low resolution?
Will I be able to get prints made myself, or does the photographer retain the rights to the images?
Will the proofs I see be the retouched versions, or does that happen after I select the photos I want?
Speaking of retouching, ask about retouching options and special effects (which can range from simple white balancing to beauty retouching and stylized art effects like super-saturated colors) and the additional cost for both.
Have a good day
Loredana -- inneue.com