Important Questions to ask your photographer Before you Choose
How many weddings have you shot in your career?
Roberts Imagery: I have personally shot over 100 weddings myself in my career. I have wedding photos from Hindu Ceremonies, Chinese Tea Ceremonies, Catholic, Baptist, Greek Orthodox, Non-Denominational, Jewish, and Christian Ceremonies. My team has shot most of those weddings with me for their experience too.
Most Photographers: Did not have any formal training in photography and just one day decided to pick up a camera and start shooting. Be aware of these photographers, you should see a good variety of photos done under many different lighting situations to see how well they can handle all the various lighting that occurs throughout a wedding day. There portfolio should have a variety of Natural Light Photos - Overcast and Sunny, On-Camera Flash Photos, Off-Camera Flash Photos, Very Low Dim-Lighted Churches and Reception Halls, Incadescent and Fluorescent lighted situations
What kind of shooting style do you use?
Roberts Imagery: I shoot in a range of styles such as photojournalistic, traditional, and candid. We feel it is important for the photographer to know many types of shooting to provide a good range of photographs. Since I am a degreed professional, I have expanded my concepts and shooting styles from the USF College of Photography.
Some Photographers: Are used to such traditional style photos, they make the couple pose and smile for photographs during every situation at a wedding. Most couples want the moment captured and not interrupted by the traditional photographer. Example - I’ve heard about a photographer who tells the bride and groom to smile at the camera while they are in the middle of their first dance.
How many hours are included in your package?
Roberts Imagery: There is no time limit to your wedding package. We feel it is important to capture the full story of your wedding day so we choose to show up anywhere from 2 - 3 hours before the ceremony to start shooting and we stay until the whole reception is over.
Most Photographers: Offer 4 hour or 6 hour packages and when that time is up they will leave before the reception is over or make you rearrange photo moments at your reception so they can leave. Ex: I had a friend who hired a photographer for a certain amount of time and the photographers time was over halfway through the reception. So, they had to move up the time of the cake cutting before the photographer left. I’ve also seen couples do a pretend exit from their reception in the middle of their reception so they can have photographs of their exit with sparklers before the photographer left. Most brides and grooms don’t want to have to worry about breaking your check book to get the photographer to stay longer.
Do you offer Second Photographer Coverage?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, my photo assistants have worked with me on numerous shoots and have received the proper training to do an excellent job for my clients and our company. Second photographer coverage is standard for all our events.
Some Photographers: May not offer second photographer coverage or will charge more that their base price for second photographer coverage. Some photo service companies who only offer a number of hours for their time instead of unlimited will charge extra also for their second photographer to stay longer.
Do we receive the rights to all our images?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, you receive high-resolution images on a disc that has the statement Copyrights Released right on the disc. The disc you receive will include a set of images in color and a set of images in black and white. One side note is when you take your disc of images to print at a local store you should make sure the Auto-Image Enhancement is turned off. Your disc of photos will already be professionally edited so there will be no need to have a computer alter the images.
Most Photographers: Will take the photos from your wedding and then tell you that you have to order prints from them and not actually get the original digital files or charge a lot extra to get the digital files. Be aware of those photographers because if your going to pay good money for your wedding photography, you should have something to show for it. They might say they will give you the photos on a disc but you should also make sure its not just proofs they’re giving you and that they are actually giving you full size resolution photos.
How many images can I expect to see from my wedding?
Roberts Imagery: Our average of photographs taken at a wedding are anywhere between 2,000 - 2,500 photos taken. We go through all the images, and delete the photos that you wouldn't want so that your left with nothing but the best photos taken. This usually amounts to anywhere from 800 - 1,200 photos given to you on a disc. The amount given all depends on your wedding day of course. Ex. - Some weddings start at 1pm and go to 10 pm, while other weddings start at 5pm and go to 10pm. Also, the photographs given to you on a disc are also saved on our hard drives for life. Our photographs are archived and if for some reason something happens to your photo disc we will always have back-up copies for you in case that should happen.
Some Photographers: Give you a time limit on when you should order albums with your photos after the wedding therefore you have to decide quickly if you are getting an album or not. I’ve actually met a couple who said there photographer deletes all their photos after 6 months.
Do you have a limit to how many photos you will edit?
Roberts Imagery: No, we edit all our images for brightness, contrast, white balance, color balance, levels, curves, and saturation.
Most Photographers: May only edit some of their favorite photos and every other photo is straight out of the camera. Some photographers believe in only editing photographs that are ordered for prints so they won’t do anymore work on the photos after the wedding unless their clients order them.
What will you wear to the wedding?
Roberts Imagery: We usually wear slacks, button-up long-sleeve shirts, and ties with vests to weddings.
Some Photographers: Will actually wear clothes that are very casual which if you have a very formal type of wedding, will be embarrassing to you if they wear clothes that don’t look like they are taking their job seriously. However, if you have a beach wedding, I think it is appropriate for the photographer to dress down a little in some cases.
Can I customize my own wedding package?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, you can customize your wedding package in a way that better suits your photography needs for your day.
Do you have back-up equipment in case an accident happens to your camera?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, if something were to malfunction with my equipment or get damaged I do have extra equipment to make sure we can finish the job for your event.
Some Photographers: Don’t have back up equipment and will not have another camera should the worst happen and the camera malfunctions. They should have more than one camera, lens, and flash in my opinion for your big day.
What kind of equipment do you use?
Roberts Imagery: All my equipment is Nikon. I personally have 3 cameras, 6 Lenses, and 4 flashes. My 2 partners both have Canon gear. Together they have 4 cameras, 7 Lenses, and 6 flashes.
Some Photographers: Will say that Canon is the best which isn’t true at all. Some will say that Nikon is the best which also isn’t true at all. I used to work in Camera Sales for 2.5 years and for Digital SLR cameras Nikon and Canon are the top shelf of professional cameras. It all depends on the user, I personally find the controls of the Nikon better while some will say that Canon is better. It’s just personal preference.
How much of a deposit do you need to reserve our date?
Roberts Imagery: The deposit to reserve your wedding date is $500 with us. The rest of the balance can be paid as it gets closer to your wedding in two more increments.
Some Photographers: Everyone is different in how they handle the deposits. Some expected to be paid in full and some expect half the amount down and half by the day of the wedding.
Do you accept major credit cards?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, our online ordering system on our website accepts major credit cards. I accept Visa, Mastercard, Discover, and American Express. I also can take credit cards on my iPhone.
Are you willing to travel for a shoot?
Roberts Imagery: Yes, we love to travel anywhere!
We hope that these questions have given you some good information to help you make an informed decision on which photographer to choose. We are hoping to show the value of going with our business as compared to what you would find with a lot of other photography services out there. We know there are so many to choose from but we feel we offer the best value and experience with our competitive pricing. :)