Our last segment on what Kyle and I are looking for in our wedding photographer (and what we suggest our clients look for) focused on the imagery that the photographer you choose will make on your wedding day. This week we’re discussing the final product from your wedding.
Choosing a Wedding Photographer Tip #2 | The Final Product.
No, I’m not talking about a DVD or USB of digital images. If your photographer is really serious about providing you the ultimate client service and experience, they will offer you more than just digital images. Today I’m talking about actually doing something with the images and taking something tangible home, something that’s not just for Facebook or online viewing but that will be displayed in your home, cherished for years, and passed down generation to generation.
Digitals are fine and great, and what everyone wants and what everyone tells you to ask for from your photographer. The catch? Those digital images are essentially the filmstrips of years past. If you’re going to spend so much time researching and interviewing photographers, and then investing in your wedding photography, don’t you want to do something amazing with them? I know that we do! I want something big and epic that we can’t do ourselves in our home!
The tricky part in our search for a photographer is that we have very high expectations when it comes to the final product. I’ve made it my personal mission to research and track down the very best of the very best products in the market to provide to our clients, and I want nothing less than the same from our photographer. Sure, if we get the digital images we could make our own prints, but I really want them to be able to give me something that we can’t do ourselves, something that will take my breath away and that we’ll treasure for years to come.
Take albums, for example. All of our wedding collections include an album. They’re all handcrafted, covered with Italian leather, imported silk or linen, or the best acrylic or metal that you can find. When we first start talking with our clients about their plans for their images, most of them mention, “I’ll probably put a Shutterfly book together or something.” It makes me so happy to then hand them one of our albums that knocks their socks off, and that’s included in their collection! If there’s one thing that I sincerely hope our photographer (whoever it may be) can give us is a breathtaking album that can be customized to our hearts’ content. I would be so incredibly disappointed if they gave us something that we can do ourselves, or that every single one of his brides already has. I want something different and special!
Let’s talk wall art now (yes, I skipped right over prints). Since we have an office in our home we have samples of our wall art on our walls. Yes, there are other people’s wedding photos on our walls. I’m saving my favorite spot in the house (the tall wall behind our fireplace) for a big, dramatic (at least a 30×40, if not bigger…) piece of art that our photographer will create for us. Every time we get a new sample in to put up in the house it makes me antsy and impatient to be able to receive one of us for our own home! Some people think that having a large image of yourself in your home makes you appear conceited or selfish. If it were a giant portrait of just your faces, I could completely understand that. The catch to having a large piece of wall art? Including the entire scene and telling your story in one image. That instantly takes it from a large printed picture to a custom piece of art on metal or acrylic or canvas that will get passed down for generations. I think the biggest compliment that a client has ever paid us is when she told us that she loved our work, and that even without the bride and groom in the image it’s a piece that she would want to hang in her home because of the rest of the scene.
We covered a TON of information today, and after writing this I now realize just how picky I’ve become (oops :S).
If I had to sum it up, here’s what I suggest you check for or ask about:
- Uniqueness: Is it a book that Joe Schmoe off the street can get printed and give to you or does it really wow you?
- Page Seams: Is there cracking or discoloration along the seam? This is a huge indicator that the quality may not be the greatest (don’t settle for anything less than the best!)
- Corners and Page sides: Are the pages peeling or not laying flat?
- Warping: Does the book still lay flat? Are any of the pages warped or wavy? You don’t want to open your album box up one day and have your most cherished wedding memories doing the wave on your coffee table.
- Printing: Are the pages colorful and vibrant? Does it match the images that you’ve seen online or on their walls? Make sure the ink used to print the pages is archival and acid-free so your album really will last for generations.
- Cover Options: Does everyone get the same cover? Make sure you’re not just going to get another plain, black, 10×10 album. You deserve something unique to you and your wedding day.
- Options: Will you only be able to purchase prints, or can you invest in acrylics, metals or canvas as well? Our clients can choose from all of the above and even have different finish options based on their home décor.
- Quality: Are the canvases actually stretched around wooden bars or are they cardboard? Will your prints be mounted for durability?
- Hanging: Are there hanging instructions? Some photographers offer to install custom pieces in clients home – that’s definitely the way to go!
- Care: Make sure you receive a care card with each piece of custom art you take home. Most people assume you could dust/clean an acrylic or metal just like you would a picture frame, but that will actually dull them over time.
I hope this helps! Check back next week for Part 3: Experience