How Do I Choose The Best Luxury London Wedding Photographer?
“How do I choose the best luxury London wedding photographer?” when planning your perfect wedding day, will be a question that has inevitably gone round and round in your head, until you decided to search Google, and came across this page. I’m a wedding photographer who has covered high end weddings across the UK and internationally for over ten years, and in this blog post I hope that I can shine a light on some of the pitfalls of choosing a photographer to capture your day, and offer some constructive advice and inspiration.
Making the right choice about the photographer or photo and video team, is a crucial part of planning a luxury wedding, as they will not only provide you with a stunning set of images but will also have the experience and professionalism to work well under pressure and work effectively with your planner and as part of the larger wedding team.
Step 1: The best luxury London photographer will provide you with a stunning wedding album.
It’s no good just turning up on your wedding day and taking beautiful pictures, if those wonderful memories remain on a usb stick or on an online gallery. Of course, top quality customer service, and stunning images of your day is a must, but a true luxury wedding photographer should be able to provide you with a high quality album, printed on top grade paper that is going to encapsulate your day, and last a lifetime. Your photographer will also be able to create duplicate albums for family and friend that are ideal as a thank you gift, and you should be involved in the design process to ensure that your album is as you’d wish. Looking at a photographer’s sample albums form previous weddings is also a great way to get a more complete picture of the way they cover a wedding, and the pictures you can expect. It’s also a great way to pick up a few bits of inspiration for your day! To see more of my lovely wedding albums, do please visit my dedicated ALBUMS page of my website.
Step 2: Don’t rely on a venue’s recommended photographers list.
Although recommendation can be a great place to start, don’t assume that because a venue recommends a particular supplier, that they are necessarily the best luxury London wedding photographer. A photographer may have been added to such a list years ago, and may no longer be producing their best work. Make sure you ask the right questions. If you do choose to get in touch with a recommended wedding photographer, then ask to see their most recent wedding they shot at the venue, and remember, there may be advantages to hiring a photographer who has not shot at your venue before! We all have our bucket list of places we’d like to shoot, and being inspired and excited to shoot at a new venue can bring out the very best in a photographer. The best luxury London wedding photographer will always take the time to meet you at your venue before the day so that important shots can be planned, and opportunities aren’t missed.
Step 3: Look beyond a photographer’s portfolio or Instagram feed!
For the best luxury London wedding photographer, putting together a portfolio of their best shots, or curating a glamorous looking Instagram feed is easy. If you’ve been shooting for even just a few years, a carefully chosen set of pictures can make an average photographer look amazing. A photographer’s website and Instagram put simply, is just a form of advertising, and we all know how misleading an advert can be! It’s essential that you (please excuse the metaphor) but take a walk around the shop, chat with the owner, and try a few things on for size! Getting back to your photography, that means talking with your photographer before booking, understanding their style and what they don’t photograph, as well as what they do, and most importantly of all making sure that you trust one another the deliver on the day, but also provide a great service after the wedding.
Step 4: Can they provide a team of experienced photographers and videographers?
For many photographers, shooting a wedding day by themselves is the norm, but when the scale of the wedding demands that a team of photographers and assistants is put together, then it’s important to know that the main photographers has a team that they are able to rely on, and one that gives you confidence in return. Most photographers will be able to provide someone who is commonly referred to as a “second shooter” (not a phrase that I particularly like) but it’s vital that you ask reasonable questions to establish who any additional members to the team are, and how often they work together. A well oiled team will know what their jobs are on the day, and be able to cover every aspect of the occasion, without causing delays to the schedule. A less experienced team, on the other hand, may simply get in each others shots and behave inappropriately on the day.
Step 5: Do you like their style of photography?
Ok, so this might be an obvious one, and perhaps should be the first, not the last question for you on my list, but it’s easy to get sidetracked by a good sales pitch by the photographer or a glowing review from your wedding planner, or even the temptation of add on services such as engagement shoots and prints to draw you in. It’s always worth bringing it back to the photography as these are the images that you’re going to be left with long after the wedding. There are lots of different styles of photography, from the very carefully posed and lit pictures of the classical approach, or the naturally light of the fine art style, or the more authentic documentary approach. When trying decide which style of photography is right for you, it’s worth thinking carefully about how comfortable you are normally in front of a camera, how much time you’re willing to spend doing portraits which is time away from your guests, and how much of the day do you want to be photographed, are you more interested in the styling and details of the wedding, or would you prefer lots of natural shots of you and your guests?