Claire McClean Photography

6 Simple Steps to Book a Wedding Photographer

Step 1: Find Your Wedding Photographer

  • There are many different ways to go about this – but you can search social media, do a Google search for people in your area, ask for recommendations from friends, or even ask your venue for their preferred vendors.

  • One thing you must keep in mind is what you want from your photography. Do you want traditional posed images or relaxed and candid images? Do you want lots of family photos, are are you more bothered about couple portraits? Maybe you want both?

  • To make sure they are right for you, look at their portfolio. This way you can easily suss out their style, and decide wether it’s similar to what you want. You can also see if they have a blog on their website so you can see more from each wedding they’ve shot. For exmple, if you were to look at my wedding gallery, you can tell that I am a very relaxed and laid back photographer.

  • Another good way to see their work is to have a look at their social media channels and read their testimonials. You want to know that other people have had a good experience with them already!

  • Always have a read of their about me section to get to know them a bit better. At the end of the day, you don’t want a stranger at your wedding. If you want to feel relaxed on the day you want to pick someone you can get along with.

Step 2: Book Your Consultation

  • After you’ve found your ideal wedding photographer, the first thing you will want to do is contact them! Photographers usually have a page on their website with a form to fill out with things like the date and venue of your wedding.

  • When I am contacted by my lovely clients, I always ask them to meet up and chat with me about their wedding. I like getting coffee (or a pint, depending on how you’re feelin’) or organise a Zoom meeting depending on what’s easiest.

  • Having a consultation is the perfect way to start getting to know each other. It might sound cheesy, but I always feel like we’re beginning a friendship as the process starts! You want to make sure that they are the right photographer for you, and this always helps when you can chat to them face to face about what you want, your ideas, and what you do and don’t like. This way you are both on the same page.

Step 3: Sign Contract and Pay Deposit

  • Once you’ve decided that they are the one to capture you’re big day, it’s time to make it official! Your photographer may bring the contract with them if you’re having an in person consultation, or may send you a digital one to fill out at your convenience.

  • I always give the option to take it away and sign at their convenience. I never put pressure on my clients to sign!

  • Make sure to ask any questions you have about the contract – everything in there will be to protect both you and your photographer, so it’s important you look at it carefully.

  • Once that’s squared away, the deposit is paid. This differs how much and when you will pay it from photographer to photographer. Personally I ask for the deposit upon signing the contract so I can save the date for you. I will then mark your special day in my calendar! The rest of the balance is then typically paid at least 2 weeks before the wedding.

Step 4: Wedding Questionnaire

  • After you have signed the contract and paid the initial deposit, I’ll send over a wedding questionnaire to start the planning process around a month before your wedding.

  • The questionnaire includes things like times, places, number of guests, theme of wedding etc. You don’t need to fill out the entire thing, but it gives me a good idea of what your day is going to be like, and makes sure your photographer doesn’t miss any of the important bits.

  • Once all the details are decided I will make you a wedding photography timeline for you and the wedding party (just to make sure everyone knows when and where to go). This way we can decide when to have your couple portraits and family group shots. This takes the guess work out of it and makes sure that there is no stress on your day!

Step 5: Your Wedding Day

  • The big day! Remember, you’re photographer will be there every step of the way! Even though I’m there to take photographs, I will also be on hand to help. It’s going to be so much fun.

  • Since I am a candid photographer, I will most likely be in the background taking photos of you but also of all your wonderful guests. I will make sure to get all of the moments you want the most, but also the ones you may have missed.

  • I will whisk you and your partner away at the agreed time to get all those lovely couple shots, as well as the group photos. If you’re feeling nervous about being in front of the camera, don’t worry – even I do sometimes! Read my top tips on how to feel relaxed in front of the camera on your wedding day.

Step 6: Getting your images

  • Getting your images, how long they take, and wether you will physically receive albums, USBs etc. is completely different from photographer to photographer. To make this easier, I will explain what it is I do within my own business.

  • Personally, I know my couples are super eager to see their images, so I always send over some sneak peaks within a few days of your wedding. 

  • When it comes to delivering all the images, I always do this via an online gallery. This way you can instantly see your images as soon as they are sent to you, and don’t have to wait for anything in the post.

  • When I send my online galleries, you can then download all of them instantly. It also means that you can share the link with friends without having to upload hundreds of images to Facebook! 

  • Depending on the package you have booked with me, I will send you a bespoke box and USB, along with prints and polaroids from your day. That way you have something to cherish forever, and something that can be enjoyed for generations.

So, to conclude:

  1. Find your photographer and contact them

  2. Book a consultation

  3. Sign the contract and pay your deposit

  4. Fill out your wedding questionnaire

  5. Have fun on your big day getting some fab photographs

  6. Receive your images online and in the post

Ready to book your wedding photographer? If you think I’m the one for you, feel free to contact me here.