HOW TO



      Not all photographer's prices are created equal


      Most things you pay for you know exactly what you’re getting, florals, venue, dress etc. But, photography is different. You pay thousands of dollars not knowing what you’ll get. The best you can do is hope you’ll love the images, products, and service. Choose your photographer carefully!

      It's a big risk on the most important wedding purchase of the most important day of your life.

      After years of horror stories from brides who wished they'd known what questions to ask, we decided to put together a list of important things to know when comparing photographers. If you are a bride trying to choose your photographer and it's coming down to prices and what they offer, then, these are all very real and very relevant to you.

      Honesty is a tricky thing.
      Many tactics used by sales people are technically honest. But we all know what honesty means to someone trying to sell you something.


      grouped by category

      1 - 4 Sales Tactics
      5 - 8 Misleading
      9 - 10 Red Flags

      #1 "SALES"

      Learn the difference between sales based & service based photographers.

      It all comes down to this. What's the photographers motive? The sole purpose of making themselves money or pursuing their passion of making art, making happy clients, and lastly, making money?

      Photography is an art... are you hiring an artist?

      Service Based

      Our priorities in order.
      1)Make art with you
      2)Make you happy
      3)Make money

      We pride ourselves on being service based. It goes like this, when our clients book we get to work on helping style their wedding (at no charge) so it photographs the best way possible while staying in the brides vision. Then for all the shoots including the wedding, we process the images and give the client all the final beautiful images, with NO restrictions. If you want something changed or redone... no problem and no extra charges. That equals happy clients. It's simple.

      Sales Based

      1) Make money
      2) Shoot session/wedding
      3) Make you pay more money

      These photographers build their business with the purpose of making money even after you think you've paid all you agreed on. Simple things you would never think to ask before hand. Like retouching a bridal photo to be displayed at the reception can cost you an extra $200! Of course that's never mentioned before you signed the contract, but what can you do about it then?

      Why Service Based Is Better... for you

      It's not hard to see why you want someone basing their income and livelihood on the service they provide vs what they can sell you. Spotting the difference is easier than you think.

      #2-4 "SALES"
      #2 How Many Images You Get

      We never limit the number of images we give our clients. If we take 150 beautiful images, then you get 150 beautiful images.

      There are photographers who give 12... twelve... images for engagements and bridals. Want 13? That's an extra $200, if you pick your 12 then want to change one out... $200!

      Ask your potential photographer how many images they give for sessions, and if they reply with a hard number, "Your favorite 12" or a low range, 15-25 images for example. Just tell them no thank you, and move on. This is normally the first sign of someone trying to make extra money off of you.

      #3 Are Your Delivered Images Final

      Our clients will only ever see final, retouched images. If it's not good enough for us to put on our Instagram page, then it's not good enough for you.

      Others will send you a gallery with 50-75 straight out of the camera, untouched, very unprofessional looking images and have you pick your favorite 12. They'll edit the 12 and if you don't like how they're edited, it'll cost you more money to re-edit.

      #4 Force You to Print

      through them

      We love when our clients print through us, but we'd never force you to.

      Many photographers make you print through them at very high prices, and the quality is the same as prints a quarter of the price.

      #5-8 "MISLEADING"

      Misleading terminology or by omission of details.

      These are a few things you'll want to get the exact information in writing from your photographer.

      #5-8 "MISLEADING"
      #5 Wedding Day Hours
      "All day" vs Agreed number of hours

      If you're told "Don't worry, I'll be there all day."... You should worry.

      You know when we're supposed to be there and when we're supposed to leave. Don't leave it up to your photographer to leave whenever they want, because they will. And if they miss something important they're in the clear because nothing was agreed on for when they could leave.

      Seriously, this happens all the time with the "All day" photographers.

      #6 Second Photographer
      vs Second Shooter vs Photographer's Assistant

      Easily the most abused and misleading in the list. If we say we'll have two photographers at your wedding then you're getting two professional photographers. Notice we said professional photographer, not just a "second shooter" or "assistant". We have a pro photographer cover the guys getting ready the same time a pro is with the girls getting ready, and we always have two sets of eyes on the lookout for that perfect shot throughout the day.

      If they use the term "Second shooter" or "Assistant" then you're getting someone who isn't capable enough to be called a photographer or worse, an assistant who just sets up the lights.

      #7 Do they offer to much?

      If they offer more than the basics in their pricing, it's for a reason. Most likely they're compensating for their work not being up to par and they need to draw you in with "extras". For example, one photographer offers a color AND a black/white 4x6 print of every photo taken on wedding day. That is a $500 charge in their package that you can't turn down or substitute. That's insane! Imagine getting a box of 1000 prints, one in color and one in B&W. Believe me, you don't want or need 1000 prints of your boss's niece they brought to your wedding.

      It looks great on paper when you first see all the "free" prints and goodies, but in reality it's just a way to inflate their price and look better compared to other photographers. They're making a lot of money off those items you don't need.

      #8 Quality of Product

      If they have a print or product heavy incentive in their pricing, beware the quality. There's no way they're spending a lot on those 1000 prints! Expect them to fade to nothing in a few years. I would rather pay the same amount on 10 large beautiful, high quality prints over 100 low quality ones that will fade away in no time.

      Don't be scared to ask about the print lab they use, if they won't give you specifics then they're hiding something.

      For example our albums come with a lifetime warranty from the manufacture. If anything ever happens to your album, the ink fades or pages split for example, our lab will replace your entire album free!

      Quantity will never beat quality.

      #9-10 "RED FLAGS"

      Red flags,

      a saying for a reason, they're easy to spot from a mile away, that is if you know what to look for.

      #9-10 "RED FLAGS"
      #9 Do they offer discounts easily or without you even asking?

      If they send you a price and then offer a discount early in your conversation, that's a red flag. While it may seem awesome at first, just think about it. It'd be the same if you went into your work and told your boss to cut your pay by 30%. You don't want to give up your income, and neither do photographers.

      It's a sales tactic to make you feel like you're getting a great deal. It's the same reason every car dealership is constantly offering $10,000 off. Don't be fooled by it.

      #10 Presentation as a Business

      Let's say you have $5000 budgeted for a photographer. You narrowed it to two, good job by the way, I know it was tough! So, Photographer #1, who has a beautiful website, sends you a gorgeous price list and great information to hopefully answer any questions you have.

      Photographer #2 sends you an email with a paragraph or two of text just talking about basic info and they also charge $5000.

      Both photographers are the same price, but based solely on how they present themselves should be a huge factor in your decision making.

      It's all in the details. You want a photographer who is detailed oriented and who is willing to take the time to show you the best of what they can offer. If Photographer #2 is unwilling or unable, then why do you expect them to take the best photos possible?


      We hear crazy stories all the time from people who had bad experiences with photographers and wish they would've known to think about these things. Luckily, we're at a place with our business that we can focus on what really matters, and for us that is making our clients happy.