I recently had the President of a Boston based company to my studio for a head shot. We sat down in my office to talk about how he was going to use his images and the message he wanted to convey with them. He was a nice man and I really enjoyed talking with him. We created a lovely rapport which made the actual photo session a breeze. When it was over, the man asked me if I photographed weddings. Of course! I love shooting weddings! He proceeded to tell me about his daughter’s beautiful wedding and the difficult time they had with their own wedding photographer. He didn’t go into detail, but it seemed the photographer’s conduct that day made the photos unpleasant and that showed in the images.
The discussion got me thinking. Do you have to like your wedding photographer? I say yes. A Bride and Groom on their wedding day will often spend a large amount of time with their wedding photographer. I normally arrive hours prior to the wedding to photograph the Bride getting ready. I’ve found my demeanor upon arrival can make or break the entire day. If I appear stressed and harried, or if I look like I don’t want to be there I can change the mood of the entire room. However, if I arrive in the bridal suite calm, excited and ready to have fun I can make my Bride absolutely glow!
The same concept applies to the wedding party and family during the formal wedding photos. I normally have a very limited amount of time to get a large number of family and wedding party group photos. I could easily let that overwhelm me and turn me into a bossy, cranky photographer. Not only will that often create the opposite of my desired effect, it could make the couple and wedding party just as cranky. That will show up all over the photos! My goal is to make my wedding parties and families feel like we’re having our own party. This is a celebration! It’s a happy day! I’m going to stay positive and light. That doesn’t mean I won’t be efficient. Time is still of the essence. I’ve worked hard to create a fun and confident attitude so my clients listen to me but still have a good time. And yes, I’ve been known to look like a fool to get my clients to smile, laugh and have fun.
So yes, I think chemistry is an important factor when deciding on your perfect wedding photographer. It’s also important to enjoy your wedding sales person or planner who will be giving you direction much of the day. And think about the chemistry with your band leader or DJ. You’re going to be hearing their voice with every announcement. Imagine if just hearing them made you annoyed! It’s certainly an added bonus to like any vendor. It makes wedding planning more fun! But if you don’t have to speak to them on your wedding day, it can be less of a deciding factor. So when deciding on your perfect wedding photographer, as yourself, “Will he or she be fun on our wedding day?” The answer may tell you whether or not to hire them.