Happy New Year! We want to extend the warmest welcome to brides and grooms who got engaged over the holiday season. Planning your wedding should be fun, and while we know it’s overwhelming to think about everything from vendors and venues to guest lists and food, the Yentas want to help.

As you may already know, Yenta Nicky is also a wedding photographer and has been shooting weddings for six years. Nicky has a few tips to help you find the perfect photographer for your wedding day. No matter what your budget is, skimping on your photographer is a mistake. Nicky has heard from far too many brides who have ended up with terrible photos of their wedding day, and it’s a heartbreaking scenario that can’t be corrected. After all, your photos are the one lasting memory you have and they’ll be passed down to your kids and grandkids. If it’s money you’re worrying about, you can find a great photographer even with a smaller budget. You don’t have to sacrifice great photos; you just have to know what you are looking for.

Professional wedding photographers should have an extensive portfolio filled with lots of brides and grooms. If you see the same couple over and over in a portfolio that is a huge tell-tale sign that you might be looking at a new photographer. A photographer’s portfolio should be rich and diverse. They should have a well branded website, living blog and contact information readily available.

Your photographer should have albums to show you. You want to be able to get an idea of what an entire wedding looks like by the photographer. This is the best way to get to know the photographer’s style. A professional photographer should have at least two sample albums to show you, if not more.

Make sure your photographer has insurance, a contract and a back-up plan. You want to make absolutely sure you will be covered in the event your photographer gets ill or has an emergency. If you meet a photographer without a contract — run! A well-written contract is incredibly important; make sure you read through the contract before signing with any vendor. Ask about insurance, how long they have been in business and ask for referrals. A good, experienced photographer should have no problem giving you the email address or phone number of a few previous clients so you can speak with them.

Do you mesh with your photographer? Make sure you do! Your photographer is the one vendor who is with you all day, from the time you’re getting ready with your girls to the cake cutting and last dance. You want to like and trust your photographer enough that you would be happy having him/her around through all the moments of your wedding day. Before your book, meet your photographer. Visit her studio. Speak to her on the phone. Take the time to interview enough photographers and don’t just go with the one who has the cheapest price. Select the one you like best and whose work you absolutely love.

There are websites out there that can really help you narrow your search: Check out: WeddingWireProject WeddingMartha Stewart Weddings and the Knot. These sites list photographers by their price points so your search is a little easier. Spend time looking at websites of photographers whose price lists fit within your budget. If you like what you see, email them, get a feel for them and make appointments to meet a few of them. Best of all, most of these will have reviews from real brides. Feedback from brides who have used vendors you’re considering is so important and can really help you decide which vendors you want to take the time to actually meet.

Yenta Nicky is happy to answer any other photography related questions you might have! Feel free to email her at nicky@theweddingyentas.com

The Wedding YentasTM , A Guide for the Jewish BrideTM, is a wedding planning site that offers tips, explanations of traditions, a vendor directory, and Real Weddings showcasing authentic and professional images for couples planning Jewish weddings. To read more articles and features by The Wedding YentasTM click here!
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