When it comes to finding a photographer for your family’s special moments, it can be overwhelming. There are so many considerations to keep in mind – budget, style, skill, and more. How can you possibly go about finding the perfect photographer for your family?
The good news is that you don’t have to rely solely on luck in finding a photographer you click with. We have compiled a list of 27 essential questions to ask yourself and potential photographers. These questions are designed to help narrow down your choices and make sure you identify the photographer that is best suited to your family’s needs. With these questions, you can take your time and really consider what each photographer brings to the table. From asking about their experience to discussing their rates, this list will help you get the most out of your search for a photographer.
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Understanding Your Timeline and Budget
Understanding your timeline and budget are two of the most important elements to consider when finding a photographer, and you need to consider them before you start your photographer search. Decide when you need the photos to be taken and when you need them to be delivered. Decide how much you can afford to pay.
Once you have a timeline and budget in place, you can start looking for a photographer who best suits your needs. The good news is that the market is highly saturated with all types of photographers. You are sure to click with someone. Even if your budget is small, you may be able to identify an amateur or student who can help you out. If you have a shorter timeframe or specific needs, you may need to increase your budget a bit or travel further to someone you can afford.
Please don’t haggle with photographers. They are artists and are trying to make a living using their talents and skills. You need someone to respect your budget, timeline, and other needs. In return, show respect to the photographer by paying full price (and, after they finish the job, make sure to send them a testimonial if they did a wonderful job).
Finding a Photographer Online
In this modern age, the first place you should check for your ideal photographer is the World Wide Web. In all likelihood, that’s where you will find a photographer. There are services like Thumbtack that can help you in finding a photographer, as can asking your local mom’s Facebook group. Even if a friend recommends a professional through word of mouth, make sure to Google that person and see what you can find out online.
True pros will have a modern, easy-to-use website with examples of their work and plenty of details about their business. They should include pricing, a description of their editing process, and some information about their background. Ideally, they should also have an FAQ section and reviews. They may even highlight past awards, awards, accreditations, recognitions, and other credentials they may have earned. These are all great signs!
If you find a website that is old and clunky or contains very little information, this is a red flag. What’s worse is not finding anything at all, as there should be some proof of work on Facebook, Google Business, etc.
If you find a photographer with a legitimate website, really dive into their work examples and online portfolios. Pay close attention to the photos they have in their portfolio to get a good sense of whether they specialize in the type of photography you’re looking for. Check for photos that the photographer has taken within the last year or two to get an idea of their current style.
Note that style often includes two parts: the editing style and the shooting style.
- The editing style refers to how the photographer treats the photo in post-production, like removing blemishes, altering colors, etc. Some photographers lightly touch up photos; some create artistic masterpieces in Photoshop. Some edit photos to have a light and airy feel, while others like a darker and moodier vibe. All editing styles are acceptable – it just depends on what you are looking for.
- The shooting style refers to how the photographer takes the photos in the session. Does he or she pose everyone, or are they more interested in candid shots? Again, both ways are fine, but you should know ahead of time what to expect.
By taking the time to check the photographer’s website and portfolio, you can make a more informed decision when it comes to finding a photographer for your needs. With the proper research (and follow-up questions), you can find the perfect photographer to capture those special moments.
27 Questions for Finding A Photographer
In a perfect world, a photographer’s website will have all the information you need to make an informed decision. But that’s not always the case when it comes time to find a photographer who gets you and your desires. So never be afraid to ask a lot of questions. Let’s take a look at our top 27 questions to help you find a photographer:
- How much input do I have as the client regarding posing, location, timing, wardrobe, etc.?
- Can I send you examples and ideas of what I want?
- What is your availability like?
- How do I officially book your services?
- Will you be the photographer working with us, or do you have a team of associates?
- Do you have experience with kids?
- How do you work with kids to get them to cooperate and enjoy the session?
- Do you shoot outdoors or indoors? If outdoors, do you have locations to recommend?
- Do you provide props?
- Can you give me an idea of how the session will go (timing, amount of walking, access to restrooms, etc.)?
- Can you send me any examples of your part work (ideally in the preferred photo shoot location)?
- Do you pose us, or are the photos generally more candid?
- Should we bring anything?
- How should we prepare for the photo shoot?
- Do you have a style guide to help us choose outfits for our images?
- How many outfits should we prepare for the photo shoot, and will we have a space to change clothes?
- Do you charge additional fees if we need to reschedule due to illness or weather?
- How and when do we pay you?
- How and when you can expect to see our final photos?
- Do you offer prints, digital files, or both?
- If you offer digital files, what type of file formats do you provide, and are the images high-resolution?
- Are there any other fees or add-ons that I should be aware of?
- How many final photos should we expect?
- Can you describe your editing process, and can we request certain edits or touch-ups?
- Will we be allowed to share our images on social media and print them ourselves without a watermark?
- What is your favorite thing to capture during your photo shoots?
- Will you use our images on your website or social media?
As you are doing your due diligence in finding a photographer, you may find that some of these questions are a bit redundant, but that’s okay. We’re confident that this list will get you all the answers you need to find the photographer of your dreams!
Don’t let the length of the list overwhelm you; instead, let these questions get your creative juices flowing and allow yourself to feel inspired and excited about the prospect of beautiful family pictures! You are sure to find a photographer you love whose vision matches yours! Aren’t you already getting excited to book your session and see your final images?
Finding a Photographer Who Will Stay True to You
When it comes to family pictures, remember that really the only thing that matters is that you are happy with the finished product. It’s important that you and your loved ones see these pictures on your walls and in your photo albums and feel joy as you recall fond memories.
Remember that in your search for finding a photographer. It doesn’t really matter what styles are trending or who has the most Instagram followers. Instead, focus on identifying the person with a style you like and who you can afford and enjoy spending time with. Ultimately, that’s what it comes down to. That is your perfect match when it comes to finding a photographer!
Stay true to what you like and commit to finding a photographer who is on board – that person is out there! So smile and start searching!
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