Post # 1
I am getting married September 2009 and we booked our photographer back in May. We went with a photographer that specializes in a photojournalistic style since we wanted a real life record of the day. We are totally pleased with our choice. During our meeting she showed a best of slide show that highlighted her work. I wanted to follow up with her and ask her to let me see shots from a whole wedding from start to finish just so I can get a better sense of what the complete package will look like. And also to see how her posed shots look as well as reception detail shots. Do you think this is appropriate? Would it be wrong to ask?
Post # 3
I don’t think it would be wrong to ask. When I contacted our photographer about the possibility of doing our wedding she sent me links to 4 complete weddings that she photographed, from the getting ready shots to the send off. Each wedding was in a different type of location so I could get a feel for how she and her husband worked with the space. I didn’t even ask her to do this, she just sent it to me so I could see her work. I don’t think it would be insulting to your photographer since you just want to see their full spectrum, but then again I’m not a photographer. Maybe some will chime in?
Post # 4
Your first priority is that you feel very comfortable with the photographer that you choose for your day. Remember that you are hiring the photographer to be your personal paparazzi so it is important that you know what you are getting into and most importantly that you trust their work. Last thing you want is to question what she is doing during your wedding day.
Although you should ask, don’t forget there are some privacy issues with showing you a complete wedding. The contracts that I have my clients sign state that I will not show anyone all of their photos because there may be some photos that they won’t feel comfortable non family and friends seeing.
However, I have more than enough albums that they can see to understand my approach to the wedding and the style theyshould expect. I assume that she has a few you could look through as well. Those albums will show you how they (or if they) photograph candid , posed, detail, and some family photographs as well.
It sounds like you have signed a contract already and that it would be more expensive to get out of it and hire someone else. If you can’t get out of it you are going to just have to sit down with your photographer and tell her exaclty what you are looking for and the types of photographs you would like to see.
Most photographers are accomodating in this manner because they love photographing weddings.
Hope this helps,
Post # 5
most photographers that I know fully expect you to want to see a "complete" wedding and usually have a portfolio ready to view (of course they’ve already gotten permission from the past couple to use said photos).
So no it wouldn’t be bad to ask. Also, you have almost an entire year until your wedding so your photogs style may grow and progress a bit, especially if they’re just starting out.
Post # 6
I would ask to see a complete wedding. So may of the photogs don’t have alot of the family portraits on thier websites. These are the photos you will most likely have hanging in the homes of your family and see most often. It’s important to find out if they come across the way you want them to. I for one do not want mine to feel stiff as so many shots of this nature do. People should look relaxed and happy and in the moment.
Post # 7
Of course you should ask to see a full wedding! I’m a photographer and we typically offer that up front. Personally, the first time I’m contacted, I send a really detailed email which includes links to 3 clients wedding albums. When I meet in person, I show 3 or 4 more complete albums. At least one is the same as online so you can see the difference between looking at a picture on a computer and a printed version. My albums have anywhere from 80-140 photos that tell the complete day. And for the (very) few who want to see even more, I’ll give them the password to a couple’s gallery where they can see all the hundreds of photos I provide.
As MissCamera points out, photographers’ style may change some between booking and you wedding. Even for experienced photographers, styles can change (less we lose our creative drive & get bored doing the same thing every week). So don’t be afraid to ask again as it gets closer to your wedding date. Most photogs have a blog which shows their latest work. It’s still a best of but it’s a great way to keep up with any changes.
Post # 8
Absolutly not you are paying good money and you should be able to get a preview. Also, it will help to stear your photographer in the direction you want the pictures to go.
Post # 9
yes you should absolutely ask. every photographer I’ve spoken to has sent me a slideshow of a full wedding and/or I’ve seen an entire wedding in an album. It will give you not only a sense of their style evolving, but their editing process. If possible I would ask to see a wedding in the fall and if you wedding is outside or inside, ask to see that as well. The last photographer I looked at suggested I look at these specific slideshows and it really helped me to imagine the day documented under those parameters.
Post # 10
As a photographer, I just want to confirm what everyone else is telling you: it is 100% ok to ask to see a full wedding. It is completely expected. Most photographers should have a few weddings that closely resemble what your wedding will be like (time of year, indoor/outdoor, etc.) that you can look through. Your photographer will not be offended at all.
Post # 11
Thanks everyone for the advice.
I did ask my photographer for view of a wedding which they graciously sent over. I just wish I had asked for it before we booked. From the shots I realized that the photos we viewed at our intial meeting while being great were not indicative of their normal shots. All the shots were from the same angle, a straight on perspective, no close ups, no variations. While the candids were great the couple’s shots and group shots were boring and flat. After a long discussion with my fiance we have decided to eat our deposit and book another person.
We had booked our photographer early on in our planning without doing thorough research. We just went with who gave us the best pricing. While the photographer at the time was not my first choice my fiance really wanted her because of price. And because we had been arguing about it I just caved in to keep the peace. But I will admit that I could have been more patient and done my homework more and search out other photgraphers as well as really looking at what style I liked the best.
Well 6 months later I know better. I was scared to ask the photographer because I didn’t want to offend them and two I was afraid it would confirm my fears about not liking their style.
Thanks so much for the advice and giving me the courage to speak out!!!!
Post # 12
Sorry you had to lose your deposit. But you have a valuable lesson here that hopefully will help others who read this thread!
It’s important to see a good variety of RECENT weddings that the photographer has shot. In the best case scenario they can send you links to the complete gallery of all images provided to previous clients. But at the very least they should show you a good selection of, say, 60-100 images from 3 or 4 weddings so you get a good feel for their style.
If they have samples of previous wedding taken at your venue, all the better!
If it helps, here are two pertinent articles that are on the ISPWP website:
Top 5 Questions to Ask Your Wedding Photographer
How to Choose a Wedding Photographer