Decide on the style of photography you like
From dark and moody to vibrant and bubbly, fashion-style or super simple, these days wedding photography comes in a range of styles that go beyond your classic black and white shots. So before you start contacting photographers, it's best to have an idea of how you want your wedding to be captured. Instagram, Pinterest and our real weddings section are a great place to gain inspiration.
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Once you have a style in mind, this will help you to find a photographer that can achieve it. If you love a relaxed reportage style, which is more about capturing the moment than posed pictures, there is no point meeting up with a photographer with a formal style and expecting them to try something different on your wedding day.
Ask for full examples
Like what you see on a photographer's website? Request that they send you an example of a complete wedding that they shot from start to end. The photographer may be able to shoot a pretty bouquet but can they capture the trickier shots like the first dance or you walking down the aisle?
See how they shoot seasonally
Are you getting married in mid-summer or having a Christmas wedding? Ask for pictures from this time of year. There is real distinction between photographers who work with natural light for a soft and pretty feel and those who prefer flash for a more dramatic edge. If you're getting married in December, remember the sun isn't going to be shining at 5pm so ensure you like their 'after dark' shots as much as their blue sky ones.
Test out your chemistry
Lenses and tripods aside, ensure you like and can communicate with your photographer well and feel totally at ease in their presence. This is especially important for the 'getting ready shots', which will probably be your first (and only?!) experience of having a professional photographer in the same room as you. Try and have a conversation with them apart from email - a phone call or in-person consultation with them will help you decide whether they're the right fit for your wedding.