5 Things to Consider When Selecting a Las Vegas Wedding Photographer
Las Vegas is known for a few things: casinos, Wayne Newton, and wedding chapels. Because the Las Vegas wedding industry is so robust, there are countless wedding photographers to choose from when booking an artist for your big day. It can be overwhelming to navigate such a crowded field, especially if you do not live in the area. However, there are a few things you should look for or at least inquire about when evaluating possible photographers. Here are five of the most important things to consider when selecting your wedding photographer:
1. Artistic fit. Remember your parents’ wedding photos, with all of those stiff, posed portraits? Wedding photography has come a long way in the past few years, and photographers bring their own unique style and vision to the way they document your event. You should ask potential photographers to describe their artistic approach (journalistic, avant garde, whimsical, etc.), and you should know which approach you favor. Beyond trusting a conversation, though, you should always ask to see a photographer’s portfolio so that you can judge for yourself whether his or her style is the right artistic fit for the event you envision.
2. Event logistics. Beyond a shared artistic vision, you should make sure that your photographer has experience dealing with any relevant logistics. Are you having a destination wedding? A small elopement? An underwater ceremony? Whatever the details of your specific wedding plans, you should communicate these logistics to the photographer ahead of time to ensure that he or she has access to the necessary equipment and has some experience with similar logistical challenges.
3. Format, package, and budget details. While it is easy to get lost in a beautiful portfolio, you should also be mindful of what tangible product you hope to receive from your wedding photographer. Will he or she be shooting in digital, film, or some combination of the two? If digital, will the digital file be made available to you for purchase, or will you be required to buy prints? The fee to shoot the event may sound very reasonable until you calculate what it will actually cost you to acquire the photos. Make sure you understand what you are obligated to purchase and which parts of the package can be tailored to your specific preferences.
4. The worst-case scenario. For obvious reasons, wedding photographs cannot simply be re-shot if for some reason the initial photos are unusable. While no one likes to consider such a doomsday scenario, you should talk to potential photographers about their contingency plans and disaster mitigation strategies. For example, look for someone who will have a back-up photographer on hand that day as a safeguard against equipment malfunctions. Ask about battery charging and film capacity, and even ask about liability insurance. It is always safest to plan for the worst-case event.
5. Interpersonal relations. Weddings are complex pieces of choreography that require the skill and professionalism of numerous people. In the best case scenario, your wedding photographer will work harmoniously with your wedding planner, DJ, florist, videographer, caterer, or any other professionals in the mix on the big day. Inquire about whether a potential photographer has worked with any of these others in the past, and consider asking for references from previous wedding colleagues such as planners and florists. You are putting together a team for your wedding day, and you should take advantage of their collective knowledge—don’t be afraid to ask some of these other professionals if they have particular photographers they like to work with.
These are just a few of the big issues to consider when selecting your wedding photographer. You can ask all of the right questions and receive all of the right answers, but you should ultimately follow your gut—you need to feel comfortable and confident on your wedding day, which will make you look better than any amount of Photoshop. You are the only person who knows what you need in order to feel that trust and rapport.