How to choose the right elopement photographer?

You just got engaged (Congratulations!) and don‘t know where to start, because you‘ve never organized an elopement before? Especially finding a photographer between hundreds of possibilities can be overwhelming. So, how to choose the right elopement photographer? I prepared some questions for you that help you to find the wedding photographer you need. Since he/she will spend a lot of time with you, you definitely should find the right one:

1. How much money do I want to spend on my photos?

The question is not, "How much money do I want to spend on a photographer?", the question is, "How much money do I want to spend on my photos?" – How important are they for you? How much value do you see in them?

Since it‘s the only thing that will remain for a lifetime, I wouldn‘t cut back budget on the photographer. I‘m not saying this because I‘m an elopement photographer. I say this, because during your research for the perfect person to take your photos you will come across photographers who will do their job for free, for 700 €, for 1.500 €, for 3.000 €, for 6.000 € and so on. And not investing in a professional photographer and falling for the own temptation to save costs, might be a lifetime-regret. Often I have couples in front of my camera for an After Wedding Shoot, because they ended up not liking their wedding photos as they decided for a non professional.

"So, I‘m looking for a wedding or elopement photographer in Austria, how much money should I budget?" If I were you and looking for a professional photographer I recommend a budget of approximately 2.500 € – 3.500 €. To compare the offers you get from them, you should have a look at the time the photographer would like to spend talking with you (for example video calls), meeting you (a personal meeting is a huge time investment), planning for you and being with you on the wedding day. Also compare from the offers the number of photos you‘ll receive after editing.

2. Which style do I prefer for my wedding photos?

When we talk about style, we mean the photography- and editing style that is very individual to every photographer. The way someone sees the world influences photos a lot, since some people tend to have a closer look to details, while others love the big picture. Also how photographers use their editing program influences the look of your photos A LOT. If it helps you can divide photographers into categories depending on their editing style:

  1. Bright and modern (focus on white and clean look)
  2. Dark and moody (focus on light- and shadow game, often like a movie)
  3. Trendy and warm (focus on a yellow/warm look)
  4. Fine Art (focus on creating art)
  5. Documentation (with no or almost no editing; raw)
  6. Editorial (like Fine Art, but with an edgy and more styled touch)

    etc.

Of course there are a lot more categories and many photographers who won‘t fit in any of these or in at least two of these. The categories might help you to find the style you would like to see in your own wedding photos. Here are some questions that you can ask yourself during your research:

Do I like the green tones?
Do I like the saturated/unsaturated look?
Do the photos emotionally touch me?
Can I see myself on such intimate/funny/wild/adventurous/quite etc. photos?
Do I like the skin tones?
Is it a coherent editing style?

In case you don‘t know where to start your research, try the platforms Pinterest and Instagram, there you‘ll find inspiration. Search for hashtags like #brideinspo #weddinginspiration #weddingtrends #weddingphotographer.

choose the right wedding photographer, moody photographer

3. Would I hang out with my photographer?

For me personality is probably the most important part. You don‘t want someone on your wedding day who is like a foreign body. You will spend so much time with your photographer that you definitely want to choose someone who you would spend time with as a friend as well. The person you choose will also talk with your wedding guests, so the people who are most important to you.

Every person gets a long with a different type of character, so I can‘t tell you who to go with. I can recommend to ask the photographer for a video call to get to know him/her before booking – just be aware that not every photographer offer it, because it‘s a huge time investment! I know that the couples who are interested into my wedding services always get the offer for a free video call, because for all of us this should feel good and not like a never ending cooperation.

4. "Who was your photographer?"

Nothing is simpler than asking your family and friends for advice. Ask the married couples who took their photos, what or if they regret anything and what they would‘ve done differently. You can learn the most from the mistakes of others. What‘s very important to mention is that 23234 possibilities exist to organize and design a wedding. So don‘t be afraid to try something else than your friends and also plan a wedding that YOU like and not what your parents expect you to have. Also ask other wedding vendors for recommendations. Within the wedding industry we are actually quite good at networking.

Hopefully these questions help you to find the right wedding photographer, someone who feels good to be with, does an amazing job and fits to your wedding dream! In case you are still looking for a wedding photographer in Austria and Europe, feel free to get in touch. It would be an honor!

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