The expert guide to finding your ideal wedding photographer

I get it. Planning a wedding can be stressful, and finding the perfect CT wedding photographer for you is crucial. There are so many photographers, and knowing where to start can be hard. But don’t worry. I’m here to help make that process easier for you.

Here I will discuss the key factors you should consider when choosing your ideal wedding photographer, including their style, experience, pricing, and more. My goal is to help you find your ideal wedding photographer and ensure you never have any doubts about your choice.

Knowing what you want

Child trying and being fussy over not getting what they want at a wedding.
Photo by: Ladman Studios

The struggle is real when it comes to finding our ideal wedding photographer. But before you open that fresh tab on Google, you need to ask yourself why you need wedding photography. Don’t get caught up in packages, pricing, or portfolios just yet. Instead, you need to step back and really think about what you truly want from your wedding photography. And the key to that is discovering what you value about it.

Think about it, 10, 30, and 50+ years from now, when you look at your wedding album, how do you want those photographs to make you feel? What is happening on the pages? Is it candid? Posed? Or something right from a Tarantino film?

For some, it might be how a photograph captures the raw emotions of a moment and tells a story. Others, it’s how a photograph can transport you back to a specific time and place, reliving nostalgia. It might even be the creativity and attention to detail that makes a photograph truly stand out to you.

Understanding this will be instrumental in finding the ideal wedding photographer for you. Because when you know what you’re looking for, you’ll be able to more effectively communicate your vision to potential wedding photographers and be able to find a photographer whose work and personality truly resonates with.

Shooting styles

Bride and bridesmaids laughing hysterically at a wedding reception.
Photo by: Ladman Studios

Every wedding photographer has their own shooting style. There is not one that is better than the other, like all art, style its subjective. Here are 5 of the shooting styles you will encounter most. To note, most often, photographers will combine what they love from certain shooting styles and that is what develops their unique style.

Traditional

Traditional photography is all about capturing those classic, timeless moments. This type of photography often includes posed family and group shots and romantic portraits of the couple. The focus is on creating a polished final product, focusing on traditional poses and composition.

Photojournalistic

Photojournalistic photography focuses on capturing candid, unposed moments. This style is about capturing your wedding day’s true emotions and candid moments. Photographers who specialize in photojournalism will often blend into the background and capture candid moments as they happen. This style of photography is perfect for couples who want a more natural and honest look to their wedding photos.

Storyteller

A storytelling approach to wedding photography is a style in which the photographer captures candid and natural moments throughout the wedding day to tell the story of the couple. This can include capturing the couple’s emotions, interactions with their family and friends, and the overall atmosphere of the wedding. The photographer aims to create a narrative with photographs that showcases the unique personalities and love story of the couple.

Fine Art

Fine art photography is all about creating art through your photographs. This style often includes a lot of creative editing and post-processing, emphasizing creating a unique and artistic final product. Photographers specializing in fine art photography will usually have a strong artistic background. Therefore, they will use their composition, lighting, and editing knowledge to create beautiful, unique images.

Contemporary

Contemporary photography is all about capturing current trends and styles. This style often includes a lot of creative poses and compositions. In addition, it usually incorporates a lot of natural light and candid moments. Photographers specializing in contemporary photography will often have a good understanding of current trends and styles. They will use that knowledge to create a final product that is both modern and timeless.

Editing styles

MOH and niece look over at bride getting ready for her wedding
Photo by: Ladman Studios

When choosing your ideal wedding photographer, consider the editing style of photography that appeals to you. Look at the types of images you are drawn to. If you prefer a soft, light, and airy look, find a photographer specializing in that style. If you are drawn to dark, moody, fine art-like images, find a photographer who offers that style. Remember, most photographers have a specific style and may be unable to change it. It’s always best to find a photographer who specializes in that specific style.

Some common styles you will find are:

True to color

True to color refers to a color palette that accurately represents the colors in the real world. These colors are timeless, clean and true to the human eye, meaning that they are not overly saturated or manipulated. They are natural and easy on the eyes, making them suitable for a wide range of applications.

Rich & Vibrant

Rich & Vibrant colors are also true to color, but with an added emphasis on saturation and contrast. These colors are dialed up to an 11, making them more intense and striking. They can be used to create bold and impactful designs, but may not be as versatile as true to color palettes.

Light & Airy

Light & Airy colors are soft, bright, and romantic. They are commonly used in blogs and magazines to create a light and ethereal atmosphere. These colors are often pastel and muted, and are used to create a peaceful and calming environment.

Dark & Moody

Dark & Moody colors are warm, dark, and contrasty. They are reminiscent of movie lighting, and create a moody and atmospheric atmosphere. These colors are often used in film and photography to create a sense of drama and tension. They can also be used in design to create a bold and dramatic aesthetic.

Black & White

Black and white photographs create a timeless, elegant, and classic look by eliminating the distraction of color and highlighting the drama and nostalgia. It is often used to showcase the raw emotion and beauty of a moment in a powerful way.

Bonus Tip: Start by looking at photographers’ portfolios on websites like Fearless Photographers, Worlds Best Wedding Photos, & Wedding Maps. You can also go on IG, FB, Pinterest, and Google images. Pay attention to how the photographs were taken and edited. Do they match the style you’re looking for?

Finding a photographer with a great personality

This is a picture of TJ, the owner and lead photographer at Ladman Studios. A CT Wedding photographer.

A photographer with a great personality is important as it allows you to feel comfortable and relaxed during your wedding. After all, you will spend all day with them. You want to feel comfortable when you are most vulnerable or excited, resulting in more natural and authentic photographs. Your ideal wedding photographer should connect with you personally, understand your needs and preferences, and create photographs that reflect you and your personality. They also help to make the process more efficient and enjoyable by communicating effectively and putting you at ease.

Do their values align with yours?

Finding your ideal wedding photographer whose photography values align with yours is important because it ensures your photographs reflect your vision. A photographer with similar values will understand and capture the essence of who you are as a couple. A relationship that jives with your photographer will also result in a more relaxed and enjoyable photography experience. With a shared understanding of what is important to you, you can trust that your memories will be captured beautifully and carefully.

How do they stand out

What makes a wedding photographer stand out from a sea of other photographers in the area? This could be their style, editing, approach, communication, brand values, or personality. It’s important to consider what makes them stand out to you and if it aligns with what you’re looking for. 

What do they offer and how much?

Newlywed couple framed by red bushed for a couples portrait.
Photo by: Ladman Studios

All wedding photographers approach this differently. Some list a starting price on their website with what that includes, some list all their pricing all up front, and some don’t list anything at all. When you are looking at these prices, you should look at it as risk removal and if you value it as such. Does what is being offered remove the risks from what I value, need, and want in my wedding photography. You will typically see the following in most collections.

  • Hours of photography coverage
  • Number of photographers
  • High resolution digitals
  • Retouching & color grading
  • printing rights
  • Online gallery

Additional addons you might find are:

  • Album design
  • Heirloom albums & keepsakes
  • Wall art and prints
  • Premier celebrations
  • secure backups
  • Engagement or Bridal sessions

Are all of these necessary for your wedding photography? No, it really is all up to what you value, need, or want from your wedding photography that will decide this for you. Do some couples just want digitals, of course. Do others want the full shebang, indeed they do. Factoring in budget is hard, i know. That said, the only one who has control over that is you.

Bonus Tip: If a wedding photographer seems like they are selling to you and not listening to your needs, wants, and values, they are probably not your ideal wedding photographer. Always go with your gut.

What to look for on photographer Websites

Example of the ladmanstdios website

Make sure you review a photographers website and take note of what they are talking about. You can learn a lot about a photographer just from their website and how they represent their brand. Do they talk about albums and prints? To they talk about the experience you will receive and the problems they solve? Do they discuss their process? Is there an FAQ you can look at? Is their personality and brand really speaking to you when you read it? Are their photographs resonating with you? Are they easy to contact?

What to expect in a consultations

Photo by: Ladman Studios

There are two phases to a consultation. The first interaction with your photographer is usually a quick call sometimes 20 minutes or less, or more, if you are really jiving. Think of it like a meet & greet. It’s so you and the wedding photographer can meet, learn more about each other and see if you are a good fit.

The second part is a deep dive into really learning more about you and your spouse, the moments you are most excited for, as well as topics such as price point, timelines, contracts, and more. This might be a presentation over Zoom, at your home, or at a coffee shop.

Make sure you are comfortable with the services and pricing the photographer offers. And don’t just go with the first photographer you meet with. Time a bit of time to really digest everything. This is a life investment, not a one time service. Photographers do book up quickly, so scheduling your consultation as soon as possible is important to ensure the photographer you want is available on your wedding day.

Ultimately, finding your ideal wedding photographer is about understanding your values, style, and budget and finding a photographer who aligns with those. Then, considering all the factors above, you can choose the perfect photographer to capture your wedding. So don’t rush into a decision. Instead, take your time, do your research and find the ideal wedding photographer for you.

Connecticut-based wedding photographer TJ Ladzinski is your adventure catalyst. With infectious enthusiasm and an easygoing spirit, he transforms every moment into cherished memories.

A storyteller at heart, TJ's work has been awarded and featured in several wedding publications. His dedication to capturing authentic moments and creating a joyful atmosphere for his couples is evident in the photographs and experience he produces.

talk to me goose!

Forget the forms—let’s talk! Shoot me a message about your favorite games, hangouts, or adventures. Next, we'll jump on a call, Google, or meet in person ( my treat ) to get into the nitty-gritty of your wedding details and see if we vibe. As a heads up, I only book 20 weddings a year. So let’s connect soon!


Messages & Calls after 8pm will be responded to next day.

1-860-337-2756
info@ladmanstudios.com

Collections start at $3600

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