9 Steps to Choosing a Great Wedding Photographer

We see you, you’ve said ‘Yes!’ and now everything gets a little bit crazy. You’re running around Googling vendors, tirelessly reading reviews, bookmarking anything that looks good, and if you’re like most people, you’re starting to feel really overwhelmed.

The good news is we are expert wedding photographers, so we are here to tell you exactly what to think about so you can relax a little knowing everything you want to know is right here.

No more guessing or worrying that you’re forgetting some big detail or overlooking an obvious question. 

Read below to find out exactly what you need to do to choose the best wedding photographer for your wedding day. 

Step 1: Know Your Style

The most important first step in choosing your wedding photographer is to know what style of wedding photography you are looking for.

Are you light and airy? Dark and moody?

What type of photo do you find yourself most drawn to? 

You can find a variety of styles on Instagram or Pinterest

PRO TIP: Spend some time on Instagram or Pinterest saving your favorite wedding photos you find. After a little while, pull up your saved posts and see what the overarching style is. 

If it’s still a mix, try picturing yourself within the photos and see how you feel. Consider colors, styles, and moods.

Step 2: Research!

Once you have picked a style, you can start to research. 

Use websites like The Knot or Wedding Wire to help facilitate your search. Or try Google searching by location for example, “Wedding Photographer in New Jersey”.

Look at reviews and determine if they are positive. Are there any red flags? How do they respond to feedback? If you review their social media, how do they interact with their followers? 

This will give you an insight to their personality and if they may be a good fit for you. 

Don’t forget to check out their website – review any portfolios for a perception of their style of wedding photography.

Step 3: It’s Time to Meet!

Setting up a meeting, either via Zoom or in person, is an important next step to be sure you connect with your photographer.

Things you’ll want to review: 

  • Make sure they are available for your date!
  • Let them know your budget.
  • The venue you have chosen.
  • What you would like to be included in your wedding photography package.

Give them as much information as possible. 

And don’t forget to trust your gut, do you connect with your photographer? It’s super important to make sure you feel comfortable with whoever you choose so that you can be relaxed and focused on your wedding day!

Step 4: Review Their Albums

Asking your wedding photographer to see a few of their wedding albums will help you to get a greater idea of how they handle different elements.

Ask for examples that will help you envision your wedding. 

For example, if you have an outdoors wedding, ask to see examples of their work from a similar setting. This will help you know that they are capable of handling your special day.

REMINDER: You also want to make sure they are capturing the moments that are important to you, that their photos are crisp and not blurry,  and that they aren’t over saturated. 

Step 5: Personality

We know we already said it, but it bears having its own step. 

It’s essential that you jive well with your wedding photographer. 

Are they easy to communicate with? Do they speak to you respectfully? Are they patient with your questions? Are they excited about your vision for your wedding day? If you reach out to them, do they respond within a reasonable amount of time?

Again, trust your gut here.

Step 6: Compare Packages

While you won’t be able to finalize cost until you know all the details of your wedding day, here are some things to consider when pricing out your package.

  • How long do you want your photographer at your wedding?
  • How many albums do you need? What are the album fees?
  • Do they offer engagement photos?
  • What is the standard rate and what does it include?
  • How many photographers are included?
  • Do they offer videography?

PRO TIP: A second shooter is a great addition to your wedding photography because they can capture the behind the scenes and candid intimate moments with your guests.

Step 7: Ask About Your Rights

There’s some important details to cover so that you know what to expect once you receive your photos.

Does the photographer maintain the rights of the pictures after your wedding day?

Usually, yes.

This means they can publish your photos on websites, blogs, ads, and publications. You’ll likely have to post photos with their watermark if you want to share them online.

If you want to print photos yourself, you will need to buy the rights to the photos – this can be expensive.

Ask them if they have packages that include the ability to order prints through them. 

Step 8: Post Production

The time frame to receive your edited photos back can vary by photographer, the season, and how busy they are.

When you meet with your photographer be sure to ask them what the expected turn around time is.

Here are a list of other things you will want to ask:

  • How long for a preview of my images?
  • How will they be delivered?
  • When do the photos get retouched?
  • How many images come in the package?
  • When will the final package be delivered?

Step 9: Day-Of Prep

Don’t forget – you have carefully selected your photographer. You can trust them to capture the moments you want them to. 

Pass along your day-of timeline so they can plan a detailed shot list of their own. 

Be sure to give them a heads up on any important family and friend details, such as family that may not get along, divorced parents, or older relatives that may need to stay seated for their photos. 


Now that you’ve made it through the list, you should feel confident in your choice! We hope this has helped you find your perfect wedding photographer! 

Check out our other blogs on Tom Russo Photography to help you with all your wedding day needs!