Shenandoah Valley Virginia Wedding Photographer

Finding the Right Wedding Photographer for You

Finding the right photographer is so important on your wedding day! Photographers are more than simply someone to show up on your wedding day with a “nice” camera to take photos. For starters, your wedding photos are what you will display in your home. You will look at your photos when remembering back to the first day of your marriage. You will want to love these photos for years to come. But you also need to love the photographer and the experience that they provide. You will actually be spending more time with your photographer than you will with your significant other on the day of your wedding.

For most, this will be the biggest event that you have ever or will ever plan in your life. By the time you get in the wedding planning groove, your wedding day will be here! You will want to ensure all the vendors that you have selected for your wedding day are top-notch. They will help create the wedding of your dreams! With all of that in mind, I wanted to share some tips in finding the right photographer for you!


You will likely receive recommendations for photographers from friends. These recommendations should weigh heavy as they are from friends who have first-hand experience working with these photographers. They will likely have seen them in action as well as the final product of the photos. First impressions count! After you have received recommendations, be sure to take a look at their work. You will want to take a look at their social media accounts as well as their website. This will give you insight into who they are as a person, how they carry themselves, and a little into the experience that you can expect!

Since email is probably the first method of communication between you and the perspective photographer. I suggest looking closely at the response time in the email, the verbiage used, and the tone. You will want to find a photographer that responds to your inquiry in a reasonable amount of time. My suggestion would be 24-48 hours allowing more time on the weekends. The response should be thorough and complete. The way a photographer handles their inbox is similar to how they will handle your wedding day, images, and experience. 


Since you will be spending so much time with your photographer, you will want to ensure that you like your photographer’s personality! If you are a very upbeat and high-energy person, then you may want a very upbeat and high-energy photographer. If you are quieter and reserved then you may want a photographer that mimics that personality. You will want to ensure that your personalities are in sync. 

On that same note, does your photographer match your desired needs? If you are a type a, planner, and organizer then you will want a photographer that mimics that to help put you at ease. If the idea of having an over-organized, over planned wedding and you would rather just go with the flow then a photographer that is more laid-back and go with the flow would be a perfect fit.

In order to determine if you are comfortable and your personalities match, I would recommend a consultation prior to booking to get to know one another. Grab a coffee and chat, almost like a first date! 

Style of Photography 

There are many styles of photography in this day and age, light & airy, true to life, and moody are the main description words used. You will be able to easily see the photographer’s style as you research their social media accounts and website. The images you see should be a great representation of what you can expect from your photos with them. 

Social media and websites are where photographers show the best of the best. It is a highlight reel, so I suggest requesting a full wedding gallery from the perspective photographer to see what you can expect. You will want to ensure that all areas of the day in different lighting situations look the way that you would want your own photos to look. If the photographer sends you multiple galleries then you can be confident in the style of work that you can expect and know that your photographer is confident in their work!


It is imperative to know that the photographer that you select has experience in not only being a photographer but specifically a wedding photographer. Wedding photography is unlike any other style of photography in that it only happens one time, on one day and in one instant. Feel free and be sure to ask your perspective photographer how many years they have been in business and how many weddings they have photographed. You want to ensure that they are aware and prepared in multiple situations.

Along the same lines, you want to ensure that your photographer has the necessary gear to photograph your wedding. Now I’m not asking you to be a camera equipment guru, however, you can ask how many camera bodies they will bring to your wedding? Or do they have redundant back-up equipment? The reason for these questions is in the event that their primary camera was to fail or malfunction, they have a secondary camera body to continue working without missing moments of your wedding day. A seasoned wedding photographer should have at a minimum two camera bodies at every wedding if not more in addition to a second photographer! 


As a wedding photographer we attend many weddings each year and see many different situations. Since we are behind the scenes, we are very familiar with the flow of a wedding day and the events that occur. We have a very good understanding of how much time is needed for different aspects of the day. With that being said a seasoned photographer does not take the place of a wedding planner. However, a photographer can provide guidance from a photography standpoint to assist you in creating a wedding day timeline. 

This wedding day timeline would help outline the aspects of your wedding day that will be photographed and that you can expect to see in your gallery. Feel free to ask your photographer what areas of the wedding day they enjoy photographing. Or what aspects of the day will be photographed to ensure it matches your expectations. For example, candids or formal posed photos.

Lastly, and the most important is to ensure that the perspective photographer has a formal contract for you to review and all sign. This is your contractual document to ensure expectations are agreed upon and met! Because this is the most important aspect of your relationship with your photographer I will be going into more detail on what to ensure is included in your wedding contract!

I hope these attributes help you in finding and deciding on the right photographer for your wedding day! Additional tips are coming so stay tuned!

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    Hey There!

    Welcome to my blog! I'm so glad you're here! I am a wedding and high school senior photographer located in Virginia and surrounding areas. Take a look around the blog to see my stunning couples and amazing seniors that I get to photograph and get to know more about me and my handsome husband. Looking foward to getting to know you!




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