Wedding Photographs

Don't err on the side of politeness. . .or economy. . .when friends or relatives volunteer to take your wedding photographs. Get a professional one who thoroughly understands lighting techniques and one who is skilled at creatively capturing the tender, joyous and humorous moments of your wedding and reception on film.

Hire your photographer early, at least twelve months in advance. Visit their studio, review their portfolio and talk about the pictures you envision of your wedding. Determine clearly, at this meeting, your photography budget. Agree on a firm figure for both the deposit and the final payment and pay both promptly.

Discuss with your photographer the type of wedding you're planning, the location and time of both the ceremony and reception. Be sure the photographer reviews considerations regarding lighting.

One very important issue to discuss with your photography company is what, where, when and how to capture the "formal portraits. " The consensus of professionals is that taking the formals right after the ceremony dampens the spontaneity of the reception. Taking the formal groupings before the ceremony, either with Bride and Groom together or separately, will allow for a calm and enjoyable photo session and will allow the couple to enjoy their cocktail party with all of their family and friends.

If your wedding party is large, or you have large families, you may want to appoint a photographic assistant for both families. They should know everyone in your family by sight and be able to assist the photographer by making sure all essential family groupings are taken.

Don't forget to inform your photographer of any sensitive situations in your respective families, such as recently deceased grandparents or divorced parents, stepparents, etc.

The photography contract is a complex one; be sure you understand l exactly the quantity and size of prints you will be buying, when proofs will l available, the type of proofs provided, when the finished work will be ready.

Once you're satisfied that you have conveyed all your wishes to the photographer, relax and let him fulfill those wishes. A professional photographer will gently control the formal posing, unobtrusively capture the candid moments and produce an album that genuinely reflects the love and happiness you and your families share on your wedding day