5 Questions You Should Ask Before Hiring a Wedding Photographer

Bride and groom facing each other and smiling during their wedding ceremony. Taken by Nova Scotian wedding photographer.


Hiring a photographer for your wedding is a big deal. You’re going to be spending a lot of time with them, and they’ll be with you for some really meaningful, emotional moments — so you want to be confident in your choice. But how can you make sure you’re choosing wisely? Perusing a photographer’s portfolio is important, but you also want to make sure to ask questions and get to know the photographer before you make a solid commitment. 




To help you do that, I’m diving into some of the questions you should ask before hiring a wedding photographer. These questions are important because they help you get to know the photographer better, understand their approach, and see if you connect well or not. Keep reading for my top 5 questions!



1. “How long have you been photographing weddings?”

Every photographer has to start somewhere, including myself (over 10 years ago!), and you should be aware of how much wedding experience your photographer has. You want someone who knows the ins and outs of weddings, who can photograph your day with confidence.

It’s also important to know about a photographer’s experience photographing weddings specifically, as opposed to other types of photography. Just because someone can take stunning photos of landscapes or newborns does not necessarily mean they will do an amazing job capturing your wedding!



2. “What do you love about shooting weddings?”

If a photographer can’t answer this, what are they even doing?

The answer to this question will show you how invested they are, and how much they care — and you want someone who really cares about the work they are doing as they document your day. Any good wedding photographer will be excited to tell you about why they love to photograph weddings!

There are honestly so many reasons why I love documenting weddings, but one thing I really love and appreciate even more as the years go on, is the wide spectrum of humanity and emotion I get to witness and capture all in one day. I get a front row seat to some of the tenderest, rarest, most special moments, and I don’t take that lightly!

It’s an honor to be there to take a photo of your grandma on the dance floor, or your dad beaming with pride and tears in his eyes as he walks you down the aisle. It’s even an honor to be there for the moments of grief or stress or frustration when things don’t go to plan — I’m here for it all, from the tears to the laughter to the annoyed eye rolls to the clinking champagne glasses to the cutting of cake. Weddings are filled to the brim with these beautiful, human moments, and I absolutely love it!


Smiling grandmother dancing at wedding reception, taken by Nova Scotian wedding photographer.


3. “What’s your favorite part of a wedding day to photograph?” 

This will reveal where a photographer’s passion and attention will be oriented as they’re shooting your wedding photos.

For me, one of my favorite moments to photograph is when the couple is walking back up the aisle right after the ceremony. They are so full of joy, relief, excitement, often laughing or crying. It’s such a sweet, intimate moment to witness! Even the guests don’t get to see it from the same vantage point as I do, because the couple is walking quickly past them. I love being able to capture that moment for the couple and their guests to enjoy forever!



4. “Do you offer guidance when it comes to posing?” 

This may already be evident from the photographer’s work, but find out if they offer any posing guidance, if they are more journalistic and “hands-off,” or if it’s a combination of the two. 

Almost every couple tells me they want candid photos of real moments, but also share that they would appreciate a little direction with posing, so they look their best. This is one reason I encourage engagement photo sessions, so you can get some practice feeling comfortable in front of the camera before your wedding day. 

Often, the most natural-looking photos happen because the photographer knows exactly what to do in the moment to get the image, or they are able to create an opportunity for that photographed moment to happen. It’s important to know what you’re looking for from your photographer, and what level of direction you want. 


Diamond engagement ring stacked on gold wedding bands, overlaying lace and pearls. Taken by wedding photographer in Nova Scotia.


5. “What do you offer for prints and albums?” 

You know you’ll receive hundreds of amazing images from your wedding day in digital form. But then what? Will you have options to order professional prints and albums through your photographer, or have to figure that stuff out for yourself? 

While it’s great to have the high-res digital files (which all of my clients receive), it’s also important to be honest about how and when you’ll do something with those photos. How will your photos be preserved and displayed (and enjoyed) for the years to come? 

In my opinion, printing photos at the drugstore kiosk or a consumer-level printing lab is not the best option. Photographers can offer you some of the best quality photographic prints and albums that you wouldn’t have access to otherwise.

You’re spending so much time and money on your wedding day, and the photos are what you will have to remember the day by. I personally love helping my clients preserve these special memories through high-quality prints and beautiful, custom-designed heirloom albums.



The bottom line is: don’t be afraid to ask questions as you’re researching options for your wedding day!

Any great wedding photographer will be more than happy to speak about their process, their photography and their artistry — and should be willing to work with you in addressing your specific needs.

Curious about my own perspective as a wedding photographer? Check out my blog post outlining what you can expect as an Alyssa Joy Photography client. And, as always, don’t hesitate to reach out and ask your own questions through the link below!






5 Questions You Should Ask Before Hiring a Wedding Photographer

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