It’s not hard to choose a photographer that will deliver a wedding, bar or bat mitzvah, or corporate event photo album that will exceed your expectations. Here’s a list of things to look for and consider when you’re interviewing prospective photographers.
1. Evaluate Their Portfolio
Every photographer will undoubtedly show you samples of the work they’ve done for other clients. So when you look at samples of their work, look to see if every photo is taken from the same angle or whether the photographer has changed the perspective to capture an image that is different and creative. Look to see if the subject of their images is the center of focus. This doesn’t mean whether the image is clear or blurred, but rather whether the subject is the most important part of the photograph. Has the photographer framed the subject so they’re the largest part of the image? Is the location where the subject was photographed slightly out of focus or is the emphasis equal throughout the image? Evaluating how the photographer captured the image will provide great insight into what you can expect for your big event.
2. Ask What The Photographer Does To Plan Ahead To Make Sure They Get The Images You Want.
You’ll know a good photographer from one less capable if you never have to ask this question. From the very first meeting, listen carefully to the questions the photographer asks you? Do they bring up the subject of capturing images which can be shot prior to and at a different location than where you’re hosting the event? For example, capturing portrait shots of your immediate family, extended family and friends can be shot at alternative locations or even in a studio with props and backdrops to make them more creative. Or scheduling time to re-enact engagement photos at special locations, or shooting images of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah young man or woman studying or praying at the synagogue can be done prior to the event so on the special day, the photographer can concentrate on capturing spontaneous images with the least disruption. Does the photographer bring up the subject of employing back-up photographers so they can capture images from more than one angle? If the photographer you’re considering doesn’t bring up these questions on their own, you definitely should ask.
3. Know What Things Cost So Everyone Has The Same Expectations
It shouldn’t be a surprise that if you want more images, more prints and/or photo albums…in short more deliverables, the cost is going to go up. But after interviewing a few photographers and asking for an itemized list of costs, you’ll be better able to compare what each photographer charges, and you’ll better understand what you’ll get for your money.
4. Ask Each Photographer To Explain How They Communicate With You.
A great photographer will adhere to a process that ensures you know what’s going on and have an opportunity to participate in the planning. You should know the approximate lead time for each milestone decision that provides ample opportunity for you, your guests and the photographer to line up locations, wardrobe, props, permits (if necessary), hair and make-up support, necessary photo cameras and equipment, etc. You should also know how long after all the photographs have been shot it will take to provide you with proofs for your review and selection. And then once those selections have been communicated to the photographer, how long after it will take to deliver the agreed upon albums for you and your family.
The answers to these questions will help you understand how much or how little experience each photographer brings to your special event. And the dialogue that is part of the interview process will help you gain confidence you’ll wind up with the images you want and expect. Following these simple guidelines as you interview each prospective photographer will ensure you hire the right professional for your event.