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Staffordshire wedding photographer top tips on booking a professional.

Here are some top tips from the wonderful Rosie at Ragdoll photography.
The idea behind this post is to give you information that might help you. Most couples haven’t planned a wedding before, so I’m just sharing some stuff I know, that might help.I’m not saying for a second you should spend say £2000 on a wedding photographer – I totally get that everyone has a different wedding budget. I’m also not saying that you should book me!I’m just saying do your research!
All that is left after your day (apart from your rings) are the photos. I’ve spoken to so many people who have been disappointed with the pictures from their wedding day, having booked a ‘cheap’ photographer. I’m also saying that just because your friend has ‘a good camera’, it doesn’t mean their photos will be any good. If your friend had a set of spanners would you let them service your car?! Equally, leaving it to your guests to capture your day, might not leave you with the kind of photos that you want to look back on, for years to come.
Wedding photography is a skill, part of what you are paying for is the photographers creative eye and (depending on what you’re after) their ability to capture moments naturally, showing the emotion of your day.By booking a professional wedding photographer you are investing in their experience, equipment (including back up gear), knowledge and insurances. Last year I smashed one of my lenses just before the ceremony, I had a spare in my bag and then my insurance covered the repair and loaned me a temporary replacement until mine was fixed!I have two camera bodies on me at all times and another spare in the car. Each of the cameras I use has two memory cards in them (incase one memory card fails), I swap cards through-out the day and once I’m done I keep one set of cards on me at all times, until I’m able to back them up. – Talking of which, after I’m done at your wedding I back up all your photos in three different places and then store the cards the images are on, in a fireproof bag!
Obviously I am going to champion booking a professional and I’m verrrrrry passionate about photography. Here are some helpful tips to look into; There are wedding photographers out there to suit all budgets, some like me offer a cheaper mid week price. Maybe if you can’t stretch the budget for all day photography see if the photographer will just do part of the day – with this in mind I offer a shorter, 5 hour package.
Think about what kind of photos appeal to you and what sort of person you want taking them.Remember, this person will be with you for a lot of time, on one of the most stressful (and biggest) days of your life. It’s important you find someone you get on with, this will help you relax and enjoy your day and in turn get the best photos. Something I really pride myself on is the feedback I get from my couples. A lot of them have described me being at their wedding, as like having a friend there with them taking photos. Do you want someone who will get on with your friends and family or bark orders at them and boss them around? (Believe it or not I’ve heard some right stories!)
Just because a photographer charges a lot it doesn’t necessarily mean they are the best or the right photographer for you. Look at their work, find out about the style of photos they take; do they take a lot of traditional, posed shots, do they document your day naturally, or do they offer a bit of both? Have a good look at the photographers website, if you can’t find answers to what you’re looking for, ask them. (I don’t think they will bite..)Lastly, see if your photographer offers a digitalonly package (or ideally the chance to order analbum at a later date.) It goes without saying that photos look amazing printed out or in a top quality album(and these are without doubt, going to be much better quality than those you can order online),but when these are added into packages, theycould account for a big chunk of your photography budget. I don’t include albums asstandard in any of my packages but you can contact mewhenever you like after your wedding, if you want to order one.
Photography is definitely an investment. After all you are handing over responsibility to someone to capture your wedding day. There are no second chances, no ‘can we just do that again’ and no amount of editing will make a bad photo, good!
Hope my weddingy wisdom has given you some food forthought…

Jo Richardson

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