What To Look For When Hiring A Wedding Photographer

If you’re reading this I can probably guess two things. One, you are most likely engaged and two, you’re in the search for your perfect wedding vendors. The kind of wedding vendors that make you feel secure, listened to and heard. Coming from someone planning her own wedding, along with being a Chicago wedding photographer, I know all too well the struggles AND excitement you’re going through. As a Chicago Wedding Photographer, I have spoken to countless couples. Each has criteria when looking to hire a wedding photographer. Some may be a match and others… not so much! Not every wedding photographer will be a perfect match for you and frankly, you don’t want that either. In this blog, I’ve developed a small (but very important) list of what to look for when hiring a wedding photographer. You deserve every moment captured in the way you want it to be!

Overall Style/Approach

What To Look For When Hiring A Wedding Photographer

First and foremost, one of the most important things that you can do for yourself when looking for a wedding photographer is to take a look at their overall style & approach. Thinking about what type of style and approach your potential wedding photographer will take will be a major determining factor when finding a wedding photographer that fits your specific wants and needs. 

Are you looking for more fine art or editorial wedding photography? A more candid or documentary style? I won’t get into specifics on the different styles as that’s another blog post entirely. The options are limitless, which to some, may overwhelm you but this is very important. Your wedding photographer’s style and approach influence how your wedding day will be captured and experienced by you two.

It also majorly impacts how your wedding day experience – some photographers focus on the perfect posed portraits and rightly need a lot of time to make that happen while others focus on being more of a fly-on-the-wall. Make sure you know what kind of wedding day you want to have, whether it’s a big production or a more hands-off experience with your photographer. Knowing this is the first step to ensuring that you hire the right wedding photographer to capture your day.


Don’t be afraid to ask any prospective wedding photographer this question about their style and approach. It’s best to hear from them about how they would describe their overall style/approach on a wedding day. Most wedding photographers will also have a detailed description of their approach/style on their website!

Check out my blog page here to get a better insight into my documentary-style wedding photography!

Editing Style

What To Look For When Hiring A Wedding Photographer

A lot of couples confuse editing style with the style/approach. However, let me tell you these are two very different things. A wedding photographer’s editing style is a signature and unique way that they choose to edit their images. Each wedding photographer curates their own editing style that is unique to them. It’s one of the many ways they can differentiate themselves within the wedding photography industry. When it comes to finding the perfect wedding photographer for your wedding day, editing style will be a HUGE component. 

When looking at a wedding photographer’s editing style, look for if the colors are heavily edited throughout the entire image or does the editing let the natural colors shine through. Are you looking for something more dark and moody? More warm or light and airy? All of these options are different editing styles that many wedding photographers may use to describe their work.

When trying to determine a wedding photographer’s editing style, I highly recommend taking a look at a fully completed wedding gallery. You should be able to ask any prospective wedding photographer for a link to a completed wedding gallery! Here you can take a look at how their style comes across in all different scenarios/scenes throughout the day. Blog posts from a wedding photographer are also a great way to gauge their overall editing style.

Specific things to pay attention to include seeing how they edit greens (are they saturated or very muted), how they handle indoor lighting (both in editing and if they bring a light source with them like a flash/external lights), if there’s lots of grain heavily present in the images, and how the skin tones look in different lighting. These things all paint a picture of what you can expect your final gallery to look like.


Most wedding photographers will not change their editing style just because you request it. Wedding photographers spend countless hours perfecting their editing style. They want their images to be cohesive with the remainder of their work. If you love a wedding photographer’s work, but not their editing style then they may not be the right fit for you. You want to make sure that you are hiring a wedding photographer whose style and approach you like, AS WELL as their editing style. 

Packages & Pricing

What To Look For When Hiring A Wedding Photographer

Arguably, this is where many couples get stuck when it comes to hiring their dream wedding photographer. Let’s face it, pricing and packages MATTER but so does your wedding day. So finding that right balance is key! Pricing and packages for a wedding photographer will vary from person to person and are determined based on a few factors. Some of those are labor, gear, experience, software, etc. While some wedding photographers are priced lower than others, that doesn’t mean that any are more or less experienced than others. As hard as it may be, price shopping, while understandable, should not be the only reason that you decide on a wedding photographer.

With packages and pricing, you also want to determine how their wedding packages stack up to other packages. Also if a more expensive package is worth the investment. Looking at a glance, you may be wondering why anyone would spend X amount of money on a certain wedding package. However, 99.9% of the time, there is a rhyme or reason as to why they are priced that way, and 100% of the time it’s completely worth it. At the end of the day though, you want to ensure that you are budgeting enough of your wedding budget to fit a wedding photographer. One that doesn’t break the bank but fits all of your other criteria.


Please respect a wedding photographer’s packages and pricing! Many wedding photographers price their packages strategically based on experience, labor, gear, how many weddings they take on each year, etc. If a wedding photographer’s packages are out of your budget, ask for any recommendations of wedding photographers who may best fit your budget.

Attitude & Communication

Wedding Tips

Certainly, you want a wedding photographer who you enjoy being around. So keeping an eye out for attitude and communication is also very important when looking for a wedding photographer. This is the person that you’ll spend your ENTIRE wedding day with, so be sure you that your energies are aligned is key.

You want to ensure that whatever wedding photographer you hire, you can be around and feel heard and listened to. Do you get a good vibe from speaking to them? Do their emails and phone conversation come across as arrogant, rude, or standoffish? Or are they asking questions and eager to meet you? While “vibes” might not be the right term, that’s exactly what this is. Feel out the “vibes” of your prospective wedding photographer and see how you feel. In your gut, you know!

Communication is also going to be very important. How responsive are they to your questions and/or emails, are they willing to share galleries/social proof of their work? As much as their attitude is important, equally is their communication.


Wedding photographers are people too! Please understand that your dream wedding photographer might not be able to answer your questions within 2 minutes of you asking them. Especially if it’s an email/during busy season/the weekend. Wedding photographers are often spending their time shooting most nights and weekends and endlessly editing so there isn’t a lot of leftover time to sit and answer emails. We try our hardest to respond as soon as we can, however, please try to have realistic expectations just as much as we do with our couples!


Wedding Tips

Last but certainly not least, we have to talk about trust. Trust in any sort of relationship is incredibly important, so why not with the wedding photographer who is going to capture your wedding day? Investing in high-quality images also means investing in a wedding photographer whose work you enjoy and who you enjoy being around. In turn, this will make the entire wedding planning process and the day of your wedding that much less stressful. You will feel 10x more comfortable in front of the camera, expressing your wants, needs, and concerns, and not have to worry about micromanaging. You trust your wedding photographer’s creative eye, judgment, and opinion which can go a very long way when it comes to organically capturing your wedding day.


Your wedding photographer wants to trust in their couples just as much as you want to trust us! We love it when couples can sit back, relax, and enjoy their wedding day to the fullest without having to worry about all the nitty-gritty details. That’s why finding a wedding photographer you trust not only will give you the amazing results you crave, but peace of mind as well.

What To Look For When Hiring A Wedding Photographer

Finding a wedding photographer is equally as exciting as it is stressful. Trust me, as a Chicago Wedding Photographer and upcoming bride, I know. However, hopefully, with a few of these helpful tips and tricks, you can know what to look for when hiring a wedding photographer. Hiring a wedding photographer can be super fun and rewarding, especially months later when you look back and realize that your wedding photos are all that you dreamed they would be.

Get In Touch! | Chicago Wedding Photographer

Hey, I’m Emma! A Chicago Wedding and Elopement Photographer ready to document your day in a candid and documentary style. If you enjoyed reading these tips on what to look for when hiring a wedding photographer, inquire here, and let’s chat through the vision of your wedding day!

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