With digital photography, anyone with a nice, expensive camera seems to feel obliged to call themselves “professional photographer.” But really, what makes a good photographer?
Before hiring a photographer, look into the following:
Before anything else, check your prospective photographer’s portfolio. Focus on the consistency in lighting, edits, color and overall quality of the pictures. Spend more time on photos of events or sessions that are similar to what you’re looking for.
For example, if you want to have a family shoot, look for family photos in he photographer’s portfolio. There are photographers who specialize in certain niches, like sports photography, newborn photography, etc. It follows that their expertise across the different areas of photography is also varied.
This can be crucial. Even with exactly the same photography equipment, photographers are always unique. More than capturing a specific moment in time, photography reflects the photographer’s perception and creativity. In short, photographers have their own distinct style as reflected in the way they choose their angles, lighting, edits and the rest of the elements. Pick a photographer whose style appeals to you.
Happy clients like to talk about their happy experiences to others. Talk to your relatives and friends and ask for recommendations. Maybe they’ve hired a photographer that they liked. Also check out your prospect’s Facebook or Yelp pages and scan the reviews. It would be great to ask a few of their clients about their experiences with the photographer.
Not all great photographers went to college to get a photography degree. Experience, however, is absolutely necessary. How many professional shoots have they done? How long have they been a professional photographer? Do they specialize in any particular niche? What’s their equipment? What post-production courses have they completed, if any? You deserve to know everything.
Choose a photographer who isn’t only a good photographer but a professional one too. They have to be organized in everything they do, from the pricing to the shoot to the editing and everything else in the process. Do they speak to you in terms you understand? Are they accommodating?
Furthermore, choose a photographer who is already familiar with the shoot venue, as well as with those they have to ask when they have questions about scheduling, location, etc. (especially with events like weddings).
Finally, find a photographer you will find likable. It’s essential that you have good rapport with this pro. If you’re not happy with them, that could ruin your mood, and this will reflect in the photos.