Destination Weddings: What You Need to Know About Hiring Your Photographer
Editor’s Note: The Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit is a weekly series (through December) where the some of the Hudson Valley’s top wedding photographers and videographers share their insights on the most commonly asked questions about wedding photography and videography. This is not a sponsored post.
Today’s author is Hannah Servidio from Hannah Nicole Photography
People have a destination wedding for so many different reasons. Whether it be you love the beach, you want an intimate moment or you love the idea of (kind of) stress-free planning, for whatever reason you choose the question remains who will your vendors be? More specifically, your photographer.
No matter where you go in the world, there will always be a photographer, and with enough Google-searching, chances are you’ll find one. You may not love them but they come with the resort, or they fit your budget so you take them anyway. I mean, it’s just your wedding, right?
NO! Get that idea out of your mind. Resort photographers are not always the best option for you. While their work may be good, they may not fit your style, and you are under no obligation to use them.
There are so many variables and pros and cons that go into bringing a Hudson Valley photographer. Bringing a photographer from home can be beneficial for so many reasons. From personal and professional experience, here are some key things to think about:
A chance to build a rapport
Most photographers get to know the couple before the big day as it helps to already have a rapport with that person. You’ll feel more comfortable, and in turn, not only will the photographer make you look like a professional model in front of that lens, but you’ll also feel more natural and comfortable with them once you establish that relationship.
A rapport extends beyond the wedding as well. When hiring local, you now have a photographer that you’ve built a relationship with that you can use for future photo sessions such as family photos or anniversary photos. You have someone whose work you love and have officially built a long-lasting relationship with.
One word with such strong meaning. If you want a certain style, hiring local means you can be sure your photographer has the same style you like, because you have many photographers to choose from. For example, I prefer a light and airy look rather than a moodier feel. All my clients know that, and it’s what they’ll expect. Rather than going into it settling for a style you’re not a huge fan of just because it’s easier to choose the resort photographer, you can be sure that your photographer will match your style.
One of the best things about hiring local is you have easier access to info as needed. Want to meet up with your photographer and have a cup of coffee and go over ideas? You can because they are right around the corner!
Also, a somewhat uncomfortable but necessary thing to talk about is what happens IF there is a legal issue. With a local photographer, you can deal with it on U.S. soil. That being said, I hope that never happens to you; but if so, it’s good to know that person is local to you.
Lastly, a local photographer speaks the same language as you. While I am not saying the photographer at your destination may not speak English, there is a chance they may not speak it clearly, which could lead to miscommunication. Your wedding day is a day you want to make sure everything goes smoothly.
Photographers LOVE to shoot in new locations. Seriously! It is like Christmas for us. Shooting somewhere new sparks something inside of our creative heart. While some couples may say, “I want a photographer who knows the area where we are getting married,” to that I say, I understand, but maybe the person who knows the area is bored of shooting in that area in which case gives you generic and passionless photos. As a destination photographer, I always arrive a few days earlier, and I location scout to find the most beautiful locations to shoot.
So now the “bad” news.
While I only have one, it’s not necessarily a con. I feel like it is more of a reality. Every photographer is different, and I CANNOT speak for all of us but rather myself and a few other destination vendors I know.
It is understood that you, the couple, will cover airfare, hotel and transportation costs. (Again, just speaking for myself and a few other destination vendors I know.)
This is an additional cost to the photographic services you invest in, but sometimes your photographer may be willing to work within your budget just to shoot in a new area, creative crack for us photographers!
Sometimes the photographer will also ask you to cover meals (I am not one because I eat like a college student). So, be aware it can be an additional cost. If you are having your wedding at an all-inclusive resort, this can be the cheapest and most cost-effective option since that covers transportation and food.
If all of the pros outweigh the con for you, I suggest you start searching for the photographers in your area to start chatting with. It never hurts to ask if they are willing to travel. This is your wedding. It’s not some random day of the week. These are photos you will look back on for eternity and smile at, so your photographer and photography should be seen as an investment.
Join us next week as our Ultimate Wedding Photo & Video Summit continues with more great advice from Hudson Valley wedding photographers as they answer the most commonly asked photography questions.