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How To Choose A Wedding Photographer On A Budget
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There are several things to consider when choosing a wedding photographer on a budget. First of all, let me mention there are alternative ways to find a photographer who's fees are cheap. If your budget is really tight (or practically nonexistent) this may be the way to go. You will be sacrificing quality for cost. That being said, some wedding photographs is better than no wedding photographs.

However, if you're able to put money toward a professional wedding photographer, I would recommend doing so! The wedding photographs are one of the only things that last from your wedding. Keep in mind, these photographs are not just for you. They are for your current family and the family yet to come. You want to be able to someday show your wedding photographs to your children and grandchildren. That being said, below are some suggestions on where to find a wedding photographer on a budget.

Photography schools/colleges - Contact your local college or university and ask to be put in touch with the photography department. If you can speak with a professor or instructor they may be able to recommend a student that would be willing and eager to photograph your wedding.

Photography Lab - Most cities have higher end (not Wal-Mart) photo-labs. Often times, the people that work there are avid photographers. Ask if they would want to photograph your wedding or know anyone who does. They may have knowledge not only of professional photographers but of the newbies, looking to get their feet wet.

Craigslist - On a regular basis I see ads on Craigslist either for photographers offering their services or for engaged couples looking for a photographer. If you're looking for a photographer, be sure to provide as much information as possible - the date and time, location and how much you're willing to spend.

Newspapers - Contact your local paper to see if any of the staff photographers, photograph weddings on the side or know someone who does.

No matter who you hire to photograph your wedding, there are three major things to consider before making that decision. Experience, Cost, Personality

Experience - If you're shopping for a wedding photographer on a budget, this likely won't be a factor as new photographers don't have much experience. However, if you're able to consider a professional photographer, find out how long they've been photographing weddings and, on average, how many they photograph per year. Make sure to see some of their work from other weddings. Ideally, you want to see a wedding in it's entirety. Anyone can photograph a wedding and come away with a couple of good shots. You want to see everything - the formalc, ceremony and reception photographs.

Cost - If you're looking to keep costs low, ask if your photographer offers a 'Digital Only' package. You'll receive just the photograph files on disk. Make sure they are high resolution and come with a license to reproduce.

Personality - Your wedding photographer, unlike almost any other vendor, will be with you for a large portion of your wedding day. Make sure you connect! If they bug you in the initial meeting, he or she is likely to bug you on the wedding day! If they seem unorganized in your initial meeting, well guess what...you don't want them photographing your wedding. Your photographer should be easy going, someone you get along with and who knows that ultimately, the wedding day is about you and not his or her photographs.

Take your time in choosing a wedding photographer. I recommend meeting with at least 3 different photographers to get a feel for what's available and what appeals to you. Take the time to do your research and you'll feel better about the decision, once its made!


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