How do you know if a photographer is reputable and creative enough for you? Quite often people set up shop with little or no training, and the images on their website are not a true reflection of their own abilities (sometimes the images they’ve uploaded have been taken at a workshop with the lights, camera settings and posing set by the instructor).
We came across a list of 7 essential questions any photographer worth their salt should be able to answer. Whether it’s a personal portrait shoot, planning a wedding or an event, or wanting to capture your baby or family; you need to be asking the right questions.
If you want to see how we’ve answered the questions just head to our website where you can download them as a guide.
7 Essential Questions to Determine if a Photographer is Right for You …
1. Are you insured?
If the photographer isn’t insured, then there is no need to ask them any more questions; thank them for their time and say goodbye. It’s easy to find a cheap photographer but, if they don’t have insurance, the cost could be more than you bargained for.
2. Can you provide references, and may I see your portfolio?
Contact the references and ask:
Did the photographer make you feel at ease and pose confidently on the day of the shoot?
Did you have a positive experience?
Did the final images match or exceed your expectations?
Would you use or recommend this photographer again?
Make sure the pictures you see are from clients’ albums and the photographer is consistently good, not just lucky every so often.
3. Do you specialise in this kind [specify which kind] of photography?
You generally receive enriched images from someone who specialises in the genre you’re looking for (ie pet, wedding, portrait, babies, landscape etc), plus photographers use equipment and require a unique skill set to complement their genre. A mismatched photographer may get flustered and spoil your day or ruin the images, which can be distressing especially if there is only one opportunity to capture the memory.
Our genre is Portrait photography so, for instance, if anyone enquires about weddings and babies we can recommend photographers we know who specialise in these fields.
4. What does your fee include and what’s the delivery timeline?
You need to ask these questions to ensure there aren’t any false expectations on either side, don’t just assume you’re receiving something.
5. Will you have an assistant at the shoot, what do they do, and do you have a second photographer?
An assistant is there to help everything run as smoothly as possible. A second photographer is invaluable at events (like weddings); potentially twice as many pictures but mostly to capture things that happen around and away from the main events.
6. Do you have backup equipment?
It might seem cheaper to hire a friend or family member who happens to have a camera and flash, but without all the back-up you risk not getting the pictures you expect: equipment breaks, batteries die, memory cards fail, accidents happen. A photographer will be dealing with things that you will probably not even be aware of. You should have complete faith in your photographer and that confidence will allow you to focus on something else.
7. Would we have a written contract?
A contract is particularly essential for events. It should detail the expectations of you and the photographer, and encompass the questions and concerns mentioned above.
If you have any questions about hiring a photographer please give us a call – we may not be your photographer but we’re happy to help in any way we can.
Roth Read Photography