Here are just some of my thoughts and ideas based on my experience of working and living in Italy as a photographer for the last seven years. I’m making the assumption that couples have already considered the most obvious such as the style and cost of the photographer. But then how to choose between the photographers that they’ve found that already tick those boxes?
1. Trust! Right up there as one of the most important things to consider is whether your potential photographer is a good communicator. Do they respond to your questions and queries efficiently and in a way that gives you the feeling that you can trust them with the responsibility of capturing your wedding day for you. With the passage of time after your wedding your photographs will become your lasting memories. It’s a big deal so don’t be afraid to ask questions and build a rapport with potential photographers to make sure you trust them!
2. Do they speak Italian? This may not be an obvious point to consider but from my experience it has proved invaluable at virtually every wedding to be able to communicate with everybody present, English or Italian. Whether that’s to help liaise sometimes (your wedding photographer is never too far away) or whether it’s to be able to speak to all the staff. Not everyone working on your wedding will speak good English and it’s really important your photographer can communicate (without confusion) with everyone to make sure he doesn’t miss a moment. Likewise I would also say it’s hugely important the photographer speaks good English so they understand exactly what you want.
3. Are they experienced? Check out their testimonials, ask questions, do they know your location well? Do they know where you can slip away from the tourist trail and find the real Italy? Italy is a beautiful country, but photographing a wedding in Italy is quite different in some respects to a wedding in the UK. Different rules apply regards when, where and what your photographer is allowed to shoot. Temperatures can be significantly higher here too. If you are looking at a mid summer wedding your photographer could be working in temperatures of up to 40 degrees, today in fact higher! Check that they are used to working in those conditions. You need your photographer to remain dynamic throughout the whole day!
4. Do they listen? As you build a rapport with your potential photographer do you feel like they take on board your thoughts, ideas and potential concerns? Ideally you want to be working in an equal partnership with your photographer where you can both express your ideas. Your photographer will no doubt from experience have lots of ideas as to how to get the best out of your time together but equally it’s important that you express yourself. It’s often happened that a bride has had a great idea to try something new, we’ve talked it through, given it a go and the result has been fantastic!
5. Are they professional and courteous? Why does this matter? You will be spending most of your day with your wedding photographer, not only that, they will be spending most of the day with your family and guests. Try to get a feel for the personality of your potential photographer, read testimonials, what do they say about them? Do they sound like someone you are going to be comfortable with for the day, do they sound like someone who is going to be unobtrusive but in control when it comes to photographing your family and guests?
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