June 30, 2020 /
When to Book your Wedding Photographer
Over the years we’ve photographed a lot of weddings friends. Like, hundreds of weddings. And no, we’re not trying to brag or boast. It’s just the truth. Before most of those weddings? We always have a first meeting with our couples. (You can read more about what to expect from that meeting here.) And it never fails. We get to the end of the meeting, and the last question the couple always asks? “When should we book?” To be completely honest, it doesn’t matter if you’re planning on booking us or another photographer. The answer is always the same:
As soon as you find one that you love.
We promise, that’s the honest to god truth. The reasons for the simpleness and bluntness of our answer are pretty straightforward. Here’s why you should book your wedding photographer as soon as you find the “right” one that you love.
So this is a big one. Because most wedding photographers (unless they have studio associates) can only photograph one wedding a day. And to be honest with you, most of us have rules for ourselves set about only photographing one wedding a weekend because we pour so much of everything that we’ve got into each wedding day. And until you’ve paid your retainer and signed your contract, your wedding date is technically available for another couple to come along and book your dream photography immediately.
Wait, what? You should book your photographer as soon as you find one you love because of budget? Yep! That’s 100% right. And here’s why. Yes, you’ve got to pay your initial retainer. But if your photographer ASAP? You can start paying down the remaining balance on your wedding collection. Which means that if you get it paid off early? That’s one less “big” final balance for you in the weeks before your wedding day.
So here’s the deal. Your wedding photographer? They’re not just going to be delivering digital files to you. Odds are they’re going to print a wedding album and even wall art for you. Which means that their artwork is going to be hanging around your home (literally) for generations to come. You’ll pass it down to your family. And do you really want to pass down wedding photos that you’re not thrilled with because you waited to book the photographer of your dreams and had to settle for second best? We didn’t think so.
Make sense? Good. But… what if……?
We don’t have the money for the retainer right now?
Be honest with your photographer. The good news is that we’re all humans that have paychecks and budgets too. We understand real life scenarios. It never hurts to ask if you can break your retainer up into smaller payments. And if they can’t do that? Make them a priority on your booking list and get their retainer put down before everything else that’s still to come on you list.
We have other meetings scheduled with other photographers?
This might sound cliche, but when you know, you know. Just like you knew your honey was the one, you’ll know when you’ve found the right photographer. Which means that you can do one of two things: cancel your other meetings so you can go ahead and book OR, go ahead and go to those other meetings just to make sure that your photographer is really where it’s at.
I’m just not sure?
We know. This is one of those BIG decisions that you’re going to have to live with the results of for generations to come. But honestly? If you’ve searched around, met with a handful of photographers, looked at all of the websites and still aren’t sure? Maybe ask for help from your honey. Or maybe trust them to make the right decision for you. Send the photographers you met with a follow-up email with additional questions. If you’re just not sure, that’s okay. Take some time to work through it. But if you’re at all worried that they’re going to book and you’ll miss out? Go ahead and book them. That’s your gut telling you that you’re making the right decision.
We’re not getting married for another two years?
Well, simply put, ask your photographer about their booking policy. Lots of vendors won’t book anything outside of 18 months in case they need to adjust their pricing. If this is the case, set a reminder on your calendar to immediately reach out to your photographer as soon as you reach that special date so you can officially reserve your date. However, on the offhand that your photographer doesn’t have a limit on how far out you can book your wedding date? Go ahead and sign on the dotted line to reserve your date. Especially if photography is one of the most important things to you. You’ll feel so much better after getting your dream photographer officially reserved.
We hope this has helped, friends! We know that so often choosing a wedding photographer is one of the biggest decisions you’ll make about your wedding day. Just know that if you’ve got questions about anything at all that we’re here as resources for you as well. 🙂
Jocelyn and Austin – thank you both so much for letting us create your engagement pictures!! We had such a blast with you both and your sweet puppies, and are so incredibly excited for your wedding day next spring!
KC Engagement Session Location | Wyandotte County Lake Park
Feel like you’re missing something? Check out Jocelyn and Austin’s Sneak Peek here.