As a wedding photographer, I ask all potential clients to sit down with me over coffee to discuss their needs as a bride. Not everyone can meet in person but the consultation is still recommended. Why you ask? Because a consultation is the best way to truly decide on a vendor. It's a set time to discuss all of your thoughts, ideas, concerns, and ask questions. It's a fun little get together that is a superb way to get to know me, as a person and photographer, and have an idea of what you want. Also, it gives me a chance to nail down the best services and prices for you. Did I mention? There's free coffee involved! Who doesn't love that? (well, obviously not everyone delights in coffee as I do but there are always options!) I'd like to give you a little heads up on what to expect when you're meeting me (or any vendor for that matter) for the first time.
A consultation is not hard or scary but laid back and exciting. I don't bite (unless you're talking about a caramel cake pop from Starbucks, then, yes, I will bite! HAHA). There's no reason to be scared or nervous because the consultation is not binding. There are no strings attached. Obviously, I want you to hire me but we may not be a good fit. I don't want to pressure you into investing in my services. A cup of coffee is not a legal binding contract stating you have to make a purchase or else... It doesn't work that way. Just a laid back approach to talking about your needs and you'll be able to see if you get that 'gut feeling' of comfort with me. After all, you'll be spending a lot of time with me or whichever photographer you end up hiring, so make sure it's someone you feel comfortable with. Heck, I've made long term friends with clients because we got along so well!
2) REVIEW PORTFOLIO
Majority of the time, I'll have some sample albums or galleries available for you to flip through. You'll be able to do a visual walk through of a wedding with me, get some ideas on which traditions you may want, and more. My website contains a lot of great images from past work... but not everything. You'll have the opportunity to flip through these before we get started talking about your wedding day in depth. Keep note of important details like quality, lighting, style, posing, etc. These are what differentiates photographers.
3) COME PREPARED
When I say "come prepared", I mean prepare yourself with an idea of your budget, style, length of time, etc. It's hard for me to build a custom package if you don't know what you want (or need). And as much as I wish I could read minds, I can't figure it out for you. What I can do is give you some ideas but it helps me if you show up with your own. For instance, you may want a elegant courtyard wedding on a Saturday with 8 hours of coverage and a huge bridal party. Or you may have four people in your party and only want 4 hours to cover your wedding and some fun reception shots. Or you may have a budget of $xxxx amount and want services and an heirloom box and album. You can come to the consultation with some magazines, notebooks, Pinterest pins and more. I'm open to options and love seeing your inspiration.
To pick up on #3, I will be discussing the timeline of events with you. To get the best price, amount of services and length are a major factor. Know what sessions you want (Engagements, Bridals, Next Day, Anniversary, Trash the Dress, etc) and what your wedding coverage will look like. I typically will walk you through a standard wedding timeline and the customize it to your liking. You may love non-traditional events and want to do a first-look and portraits before the ceremony or you may not want to do any getting ready candids. There's no right or wrong way to plan out the day of the wedding. But I'm here to make it a bit easier.
5) ASK QUESTIONS
Do not hesitate to ask questions. I'll be asking you a ton of questions but this consultation is where you'll decide if you love me and my services. I'd rather you ask all the questions and know for sure than to get halfway to your wedding and you realize that you wish you chose another photographer. This is my way of helping you know in advance. Feel free to ask questions, such as, Do you have insurance?, What if we go over the paid shoot time?, What's your turnaround time?, Do you have a payment plan?, What's your favorite color?, Who's your favorite actress?... Whoops, well, we can talk about those too if you'd like.
At the end of the consultation, we basically interviewed each other. You, the potential client, and myself, the photographer, will know if we are right for each other. If you decide you like another photographer better, I wish you well. If I feel that I am not the right photographer for you, I will give you a list of available photographers. Just remember to be honest and open with me. I hope that we love each other and move forward with an official proposal. This proposal lines out everything that we discussed, along with cost, timeline, additional sessions, products and more. It includes the contract and a payment plan. If you choose to hire me as your wedding photographer, all you do is follow the prompts and you'll have your wedding booked.
STARTING TO PLAN YOUR WEDDING AND LOOKING FOR A WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHER? CONTACT ME HERE TO BOOK YOUR WEDDING PHOTOGRAPHY CONSULTATION! PLANNING A DESTINATION WEDDING? I LOVE TO TRAVEL!