Find the best wedding photographer...

Photographs and memories are forever. Out of all the wedding vendors that you hire, almost all of your services will be made to only exist for that day. Think about it, cake, flowers, music, and decorations will long fade into your memory. Photography is one of the few areas that will actually live on. So, in a way, this puts a bit of pressure on you to make sure you get this one right. You don't want to look back years down the road and absolutely hate what you see when you pull out your wedding album. There are plenty of talented and professional wedding photographers that operate in the Charleston area so you should be able to guarantee a final product that you will be satisfied with as long as you put in the hard work it takes to find the perfect one for you. Here are a few tips that we believe will help you in your search and leave you, in the end, with some great images that you will want to return to again and again.

Let's talk about timing. Start your search early. And we mean really early. At least one year before your wedding, start asking your circle of friends, family and co-workers about potential photographers they may know something about. Browse wedding websites and blogs for information about candidates that you may take a liking too. Look at online portfolios in order to gain a sense of each candidate's style, talent, and quality. As you are looking at these samples, ask yourself if you like the angles and the types of shots that they captured. Are the images in prefect focus, do the subjects looked relaxed, does the photographer have a sense of what a great composition is all about?

Once you have a short list of potential photographers, call up each one and see if they have your wedding date available on their calendar. If they do, ask for an in-person meeting. Treat this meeting as a serious job interview. Talk to them about their style. Ask them what they feel sets them apart from the hundreds of other photographers in the Charleston area. Are they open to your suggestions as to the shot list they develop? Do they work with a second shooter or is that an option? This can provide you with unique shots that one shooter would not be capable of. Ask to see two full wedding shoots in order to access how they operate for the entire event and whether that meshes with your vision. Do you actually like the person you are interviewing? This can be more important that you might first think. Remember, you are going to be working close together for the entire day and it is better if you hire someone with a pleasing personality that will treat you and your guests with respect. The last thing you want is a prima donna. And one more thing, make sure you ask for at least five references and check with each one to see if the photographer was able to fulfil their dreams.

When it comes to talking money, ask to see their standard package. Do you like what is included? What are you interested in that would be an additional cost? Find out how much. Pay attention to how many hours of shooting is included in the package and determine whether that will be enough for the kind of activities you have planned. Find out how much an extra shooter will cost. Once you are satisfied with one of the candidates you are interviewed, read through a written contract that should cover every little detail from the beginning of your special day to post-production work and when you will receive your final products. Now that you have your very own professional photographer, enjoy your day when it comes and leave the shooting to them.

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