How to Choose the Right Wedding Photographer



Photography is the cornerstone of your wedding’s memories. The right picture instantly takes you back to the happiest day of your life. Capturing your day the way you envision starts with choosing a wedding photographer who is professional and experienced.

Below are simple tips to hiring a wedding photographer who will provide you with memories you will treasure forever.



  1. Start Searching Immediately

Hiring a wedding photographer is one of the first things you should do, because the best professional photographers book their schedules a year in advance. If you want outstanding images, start searching for your photographer when you have decided on the date.

2. Search everywhere

  1. Start with the Oahu Wedding Association! We have outstanding wedding photographers
  2. Ask for recommendations from friends and family who have held weddings prior to your event. Ask if they liked the photographer. Look at their wedding album.
  3. Ask other professionals involved in your wedding day festivities will likely have worked with photographers in the past. Ask for recommendations from your wedding planner, venue manager, caterer, baker, florist, etc.

3. Look at Wedding Photo Samples
  1. If you have a list of photographers from which to choose, look at their Web sites to begin eliminating candidates from your list. Determine which photographer has the same vision as you do.  
  2. Think about the tone that you want your photos to express.  Are you and your fiancé serious and traditional, or do you prefer a photojournalistic wedding photographs?
  3. After narrowing your selection of wedding photographers down to about three, make appointments to interview the them.
  4. Likely, the photographer will have  wedding albums available or online images to show you.
  5. Examine the basics of the pictures-such as color, clarity, exposure, graininess and composition. Then determine the photographer’s style; do they shoot photos that are adventurous and unique or are they standard and ordinary? This will also help you determine which style you prefer.
  6. Pay attention to the photographer’s ability to capture the emotion of the day. Does it appear that he has the personality to make his subjects comfortable and happy? Or is she the type of photographer that seemingly takes pictures without much passion.
  7. Come away from the interview knowing the quality of the photographer, overall style, and if they will adjust there style to your individual taste.

4. Gauge Their Professionalism
  1. While not all amateur photographers are created equal, the best way to ensure you receive a quality wedding album is to hire a seasoned professional with a solid background from which to draw.
  2. During your initial interviews, find out how many weddings the photographer has shot. He/she may have been a professional photographer for 15 years, but only doing weddings for the past year. Remember, wedding photography is much different than any other type of photography.
  3. Along with the number of years he/she has been filming weddings, ask how many actual weddings they has photographed. This will give you a better idea of how experienced the photographer has become.
  4. With such experience comes not only the knowledge of how to photograph a wedding, but also how to act during the ceremony and reception. For example, how will they dress and how will they act to your wedding party and guests?
  5. Finally, find out if the photographer has shot at your wedding venue before. If he has, he may know of places to get good shots or ways to capture moments the best.

5. Discuss Wedding Photography Equipment
  1. Although you may not be a professional photographer yourself, you should know what type of camera and equipment your photographer will be using during your event. You may find that you are more particular about it than you think.
  2. As if they bring along an assistant to help them during your wedding or a 2nd photographer,  ask if they bring backup equipment in case his original equipment fails.

6. Determine Costs and Sign the Contract
  1. While you want to make sure you book your photographer for the date of your wedding immediately, make sure you read over the legal details of exactly what you will get before signing the contract.
  2. First, agree on your investment and what you will receive.  Know exactly what type of service and what is included in your package.
  3. Make sure that the photographer you want is the photographer you will get at your wedding.  
  4. Following these simple steps will ensure you hire the photographer to meet your needs and receive a wedding album to treasure for years to come

This Genius Tip provided by Dave Miyamoto from Dave Miyamoto & Company Photography

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