How To Choose A Wedding Photographer

September 15, 2023

A dream photographer or photography team encompasses many different skills, from the more technical aspects of covering a wedding to the human element- capturing authentic love and precious moments candidly with a lot of heart. 

The biggest day of your life comes with a ton of expectation and responsibility, and every couple wants comprehensive coverage of the event with all the smiles, tears, and even mini-meltdowns captured through the lens. Here is how you can choose a wedding photographer who will ensure you laugh and cry joyfully at your pictures as you look back on them years from now. 

What Is A Wedding Photographer?

A wedding photographer is a professional who specializes in capturing moments in a wedding. They are the visual storytellers who freeze time, preserving every smile, every tear, and every stolen glance. They're not just photographers but memory-makers, capturing the magic of your love story frame by frame.

A person may argue that any photographer can theoretically do the job of a wedding photographer. Still, the latter will typically have years and many dozens of events worth of experience, and that makes all the difference. 

A wedding is a high-stakes event where the margin of error is very low, and it is essential for the photographer to know the schedule, anticipate key moments, and capture more than necessary so that the couple and their family can have as many memories as possible of this most special day. 

Wedding photographers are also experts in covering a range of pre-wedding events or moments such as a family photo shoot, the couple’s first look, portrait photography or couple’s photo shoot, and traditional events of different cultures. 

Bride and groom photo posing

When to Book a Wedding Photographer?  

The best and most sought-after wedding photographers are usually booked months or years in advance, so a good standard practice would be to start looking as early on into the wedding preparations as possible. Ideally, you should start the hunt for your wedding photographer as soon as you've set a date and chosen your venue. Here are a few reasons why:

High Demand:

Talented wedding photographers are often in high demand, especially during peak wedding season. If you have a specific photographer in mind, they might get booked up quickly, so it’s best to meet with them and hire them far in advance. 

Building a Connection:

Finding the right photographer isn't just about their skills; it's also about how well you connect with them. So, it’s important to meet with prospective photographers early in the planning stages so you can get a feel for their personality to know if they fit well with you and make you feel comfortable. 

In general, aim to book your wedding photographer at least 9 to 12 months in advance, especially if you're getting married during a popular wedding season or on a weekend. However, if your wedding date is flexible or falls during the off-season, you might have more flexibility with your timeline.

Remember, the best wedding photographers often have limited availability, so don't wait too long to secure your favorite choice. It's all part of ensuring that your wedding day is beautifully documented, preserving those cherished moments for a lifetime of memories. Next up, we'll explore how to find the perfect wedding photographer who aligns with your style and vision.

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What Are The Different Wedding Photograpy Styles?

Traditional/Classic Style:

The Style: Traditional wedding photography is deeply rooted in capturing structured, posed shots that encompass the essential elements of a wedding day. It captures key moments like the ceremony, family portraits, and group shots.

Couples Who Love It: Couples who appreciate timeless elegance, value family traditions, and want polished, frame-worthy photos tend to gravitate toward this style.

Traditional classic style photography

Photojournalistic/Candid Style:

Style: This style emphasizes candid, unposed moments, capturing the day as it unfolds naturally. It's all about documenting emotions and real-life moments.

Couples Who Love It: Couples who want their wedding day to be captured authentically, showcasing genuine emotions and candid interactions, often prefer this style. They appreciate the beauty of well-composed group shots, capturing every member of their extended families and bridal party.

Fine Art Style:

Style: Fine art wedding photography is a style that goes beyond simply capturing moments; it transforms your wedding day into a visual masterpiece.It is characterized by a creative and artistic approach. It often includes dramatic lighting, unique compositions, and attention to detail and the result is typically are soft and dreamy photos. 

Couples Who Love It: Artistic couples who want their wedding to be a visual masterpiece, with a focus on aesthetics and creativity, find this style appealing.

Vintage/Retro Style:

Style: Vintage photography aims to recreate the look and feel of old photographs. It often uses sepia tones, soft focus, and antique props.

Couples Who Love It: Couples who adore nostalgia, have a vintage-themed wedding, or simply appreciate the romanticism of the past might opt for this style.

Documentary Style:

Style Documentary wedding photography is all about telling a story. It captures the entire day as a narrative, including behind-the-scenes moments and candid interactions.

Couples Who Love It: Couples who want a comprehensive, storytelling approach to their wedding photography, showing the full spectrum of emotions and events.

Natural/Light and Airy Style:

Style: This style uses soft, natural light and pastel color palettes to create a dreamy, romantic look. It often emphasizes bright, airy, and ethereal qualities.

Couples Who Love It: Couples who prefer a soft and dreamy atmosphere in their photos, with a focus on a light and romantic feel, gravitate toward this style.

Natural light and airy style photography

Destination/Travel Style:

Style: Destination wedding photography captures the essence of the location, often featuring scenic landscapes and the couple's adventure.

Couples Who Love It: Couples having a destination wedding or eloping in a picturesque location, seeking to showcase their love for travel and exploration.

Dark and Moody Style:

Style: Dark and moody wedding photography is characterized by its dramatic and atmospheric approach. It plays with shadows, rich colors, and contrast to create a sense of depth and mystery in photos. This style often has a boho-vive and features intense emotions and a more artistic, cinematic feel.

Couples Who Love It: It's an ideal choice for those who want their wedding photos to have a cinematic quality, with a focus on evoking deep emotions and creating a sense of intimacy. This style is perfect for couples who are looking for something unconventional and daring in their wedding photography, where shadows and contrasts create a compelling narrative.

How Much Does It Cost to Hire a Wedding Photographer?  

Hiring a wedding photographer can vary widely in cost depending on several factors. It's kind of like choosing the perfect wedding dress – there are options to fit different budgets and styles. 

Cost is typically based on their level of experience, their location, how long they’ll be at the wedding, and if they’re are photographing pre or post wedding events. But. it can also comprise various extraneous services such as the number of edits, premium photo albums, printing, framing, and hiring assistants or 2nd shooters to cover the event. 

On average, though, you can expect to spend anywhere from $1,000 to $4,500 or more for a wedding photographer.

We know weddings are all about creating lasting memories, and your photos are a big part of that. They are what preserve those memories so you can look back on this day for years to come. So, here's a little advice: consider your budget carefully and prioritize what's most important to you, allocate more funds to the things that mean the most to you. And don't forget to factor in extra costs like albums, prints, or additional coverage if needed.

Remember, it's not just about the price tag but also about finding a photographer who vibes with your style and vision.

How Long Should You Hire a Wedding Photographer For?     

This question relates directly to the itinerary of your special day. Have you always wanted a pre-wedding couples’ photo shoot or a family photo shoot? Do you want more comprehensive coverage of all the pre-wedding happenings and festivities, or do you want the pictures confined to the ceremony and reception? 

Whether you are getting married at a venue or are having a destination wedding, these are all considerations you need to write down when you decide the length of time a photographer should be hired. If you choose to try out the photographer’s style beforehand, such as for an engagement shoot, that will also factor into the time and cost. 

Wedding Photographer FAQ’s

How much of my wedding budget should I allocate to the photographer?

Budgeting is a very personal decision. The part of the budget you will be willing to allocate to the photographer will depend largely on other factors such as venue cost, décor, catering, styling, logistics, etc. Many experts suggest dedicating 10% - 15% of the total budget to photography.

But, if you absolutely love a particular wedding photographer and they exceed that percentage, you can cut back on other expenses to ensure you have the photography experience you want. 

What questions do I need to ask before booking a wedding photographer?

Style is everything when you are deciding on a wedding photographer. Do your homework and shortlist photographers specializing in the style you love.. Whether you want traditional wedding photography, editorial style, fine art wedding photography, or dark and moody, try to find professionals who have experience and a gallery of weddings in that style. 

Here are some questions you should ask any potential wedding photographer before you hire them. 


First things first, check if the photographer is available on your wedding date. If not, there's no need to delve deeper.


Review their portfolio to see if their style aligns with your vision. Are they skilled at candid shots, traditional portraits, or a mix of both?


Ask about their experience shooting weddings. Experienced photographers often handle unexpected situations better.


Request references or testimonials from past clients to gauge their satisfaction with the photographer's work.

Packages and Pricing:

Get a clear understanding of their pricing and what is included in each package. Are there additional costs for albums or travel?

Backup Plan:

Inquire about their backup plan in case they can't make it to your wedding due to unforeseen circumstances.

Schedule and Timings: 

Discuss the wedding day schedule to ensure they can capture all the important moments you want.

Number of Photographers:

If you have a large wedding or specific coverage needs, ask if they work with a team or assistant photographers.

Editing Process:

Understand their post-processing and editing style. Make sure it aligns with your preferences.

Rights to the Photos: 

Clarify who owns the rights to the photos and if you can print and share them as you wish.

Timeline for Delivery:

Ask about the expected timeline for receiving your wedding photos and albums.

Cancellation and Refund Policy:

Be aware of their cancellation and refund policies in case of any changes in your wedding plans.

Equipment and Backup:

Ensure they have professional-grade equipment and backup gear to handle any technical issues.


Check if they have liability insurance, which can be important for unexpected situations.


Discuss logistics like travel expenses, accommodation (if required), and any specific requirements for your venue.

Remember, it's not just about their skills but also how comfortable you feel with the photographer. You'll be spending a significant part of your wedding day with them, so a good rapport is essential. Take your time to evaluate your options and choose someone who aligns with your vision and personality. 

How much does a wedding photographer cost?

A photographer can cost upwards of a few thousand dollars depending on their rate and whether they charge per event or per hour. For most couples, photography accounts for a significant chunk of their vendor budget. Experts suggest allocating 10% - 15% of your total budget to the photography.

Do I need to tip my wedding photographer?

As any married couple will tell you, it is always good manners to tip your wedding vendors and waiting staff. Since photographers and videographers are professionals themselves, they do not need a tip. Still, it is a gesture of goodwill since they are with you like a shadow every step of the way, and most will spend extra time to make sure they capture all your special moments and get the job done just right. The tip is separate from transportation costs or other miscellaneous payments for extra services. 

Wedding photographs are priceless memories preserved for generations, and only a photographer who understands your vision can capture these prized moments. Go with your gut when choosing the right professional, and have a clear aesthetic in mind. It is easy to be disappointed when you don’t know what you want the final edit to look like.

Finding the perfect wedding photographer in Italy can be a difficult task. With VB-Events, you need look no further. Thanks to our in-depth knowledge of the industry and our network of professionals specialised in luxury weddings, we guarantee you flawless and unforgettable photographic memories. Start your stress-free journey by booking a free consultation with us.

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