How to Find the Right Photographer for Your Style

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It’s not hard to find a wedding photographer — a quick Google search will yield plenty of results. But finding the best one for you? That takes some research. Here are some tips and tricks to find a pro who understands your wedding vision and can capture it in images that show off your signature style!

Know your own style first
You can’t determine if a photographer’s style is a good match if you’re not sure what your style is! Wedding photography styles falls into four main categories: traditional, artistic, documentary and editorial.

“A traditional photographer sets up all the shots and directs people,” explains Kristi Drago-Price, a New York City-based wedding photographer. “An artistic style runs the gamut from very dramatic to fashion-focused to soft and airy to trendy/hipster.”

A documentary or photojournalistic style photographer shoots the scene as is with little direction. Editorial, which Drago-Price favors, is a combination of artistic and documentary. “Before I start shooting, we’ll clean up any messy area and set the bride by the best light then let things happen naturally,” she says.

To figure out what style you like best, look at professional photographers’ websites. Looking at online galleries of give you a sense of different aesthetics.

Look at your friends’ recent wedding albums
Be sure to ask pals who have similar taste as you for photographer recommendations. So if you and your bestie are as different as could be—she was all about being a princess bride while you’ve got more of an edge—she probably went for a traditional photographer, not the artistic one that you’ll be more attracted to.

Surf social media. “Go on Instagram and search hashtags relevant to your style,” suggests Drago-Price, “such as #romanticweddings or #fineartweddings." Also check out local bridal blogs and ask your other vendors (florist, baker) for their recommendations.

Meet the photographer in person
Once you’ve gotten a few names, contact each about their availability on your wedding date and rates. Then set up a face-to-face (or, if you’re not in the same town, video chat) with those who are available and fit your budget. Does she listen to what you’re saying and share your vision? Does she “get” you?

You’ll also want to get a sense of the photographer’s personality since you’ll be spending almost your entire wedding day with her. Is she personable and calm? Will you be comfortable around her for eight hours?

Check out the goods
Ask to look at a complete wedding she’s shot rather than an album of her best photos from many different weddings. By only looking at her “greatest hits,” you won’t get you a sense of his style from start to finish as you would by seeing a comprehensive wedding album.

Discuss how she would shoot your wedding
If she’s not familiar with your venue(s), ask her if she’ll visit before your wedding day; she should know the lay of the land and lighting situations. If there are certain shots you want or special post-production effects, talk to her about them. If you like what you hear, go for it!

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