Finding your photographer will be a major part of the wedding planning experience. After all, this is the person who will capture all the happy moments of your big day. Booking your photographer is so much more than just saying “we want you to shoot our wedding!” and then signing a contract. It’s a process of discovering what you like, what’s important to you, and which person can provide you with everything you’re looking for. After booking dozens of clients I’ve created the best process that helps all of us get to know each other and feel confident in knowing if we’re a great fit. If you’re someone who has been looking at me and my work for a while and thinking you may be interested in contacting me for your wedding, here’s an overview of what you can expect from my booking process.
Step 1: Fill Out the Booking Form on My Website
Since a lot of people find me on instagram, many assume that the best way to contact me is via DMS. While that’s not a terrible way to get in contact with me for quick questions, this is definitely not ideal. Imagine if I get 5 DMs a day and then you contact me about scheduling your wedding. 2 weeks go by and you don’t hear back from me, that’s because now our DM conversation is buried underneath all the story replies, random meme’s my friends send me, and other people asking me about their wedding day.
Instead, the best way to contact me about your wedding is through the contact form on my website. Then we can communicate the rest of the time over email where things are a lot more organized and much smoother 😅. My booking form on my website has a lot of great information that I need in order to get started with you. Information like wedding date, venue, specific details/requests, are super helpful for me to begin to
visualize your day and know if we have potential to be a great fit. Once you fill out the form, I will always email you back within 24 hours (it’s usually always much faster than that but ya know, I gotta give myself some wiggle room 😂)
If filling out a booking form feels like a lot of pressure and commitment I promise you, it’s not. Whether you are totally sold and ready to book me or have a lot more questions and are searching around this is the right move to make. Just be honest with me and tell me that you’re still looking at other people. I promise I won’t be offended and I will always make sure you are well taken care of.
Step 2: Schedule a Call or In-Person Meeting
After you give me the basic information about your wedding I want to dive deep and discover if we’re the perfect fit. Meeting and having a face to face conversation (whether that’s a phone call, FaceTime, or in person) gives us the chance to get to know each other better, see if our personalities vibe, and see if we have a similar vision when it comes to your wedding photography. I love to help you sort through all the ideas that are circling around in your head and talk about things that will be good to know for future wedding planning.
This is not a “carved in stone” conversation. What I mean is, sometimes people feel pressure that if they meet with me then they may be committing; or that they have to have their whole wedding planned because of the questions I ask them. NOT AT ALL! This is the BEGINNING of you planning your wedding. You will probably change your ideas multiple times before the actual date. Instead, I always like to say that the things we talk about are just to “plant seeds for you to think about now, that will help you make decisions down the road”. Remember, this is a DISCOVERY call, meaning the purpose is for both parties to discover if they want to move forward. There should be no pressure whatsoever.
Step 3: Create Your Photography Package
All my packages are custom created by YOU, not me. This means that I’m not over here telling you what you can and can’t have. You are in control. The way this works: after we meet or have our phone call, I send you a pdf that allows you to choose from a list of hours and special add ons. Some of the most popular items people add on to their packages are a bridal session, second photographer, roll of 35mm black and white film, and a custom wedding album, but really if there’s anything else you can think of I love to figure out a way to make it available to you.
Once you fill out the form and submit it, that notifies me that you are ready to book! Super duper easy. Once I’m notified I start getting everything prepped for the last step.
Step 4: Sign the Contract and Pay the Retainer
It’s always a little intimidating when legal things are involved, but there’s no need to be worried here.
A signed contract and retainer payment are both required to officially book and secure your wedding date. The contract I send you has been approved by legal guidance and is a contract that I send to all of my couples. This is meant to protect you just as much as it protects me.
Here’s some of the most important points you can find in the contract:
- Reserves the wedding date, so I cannot schedule anything else on that same day.
- Retainer must be paid at the time of the signed contract
- Final payment is due 30 days before wedding date
- Discusses cancellation and reschedule policy
- Photographer will have final say on images selected in the published gallery and creative control over the edits
- Final gallery will be delivered 6 weeks after the wedding date
Of course there’s a lot more information in there but these are just some things that you can expect to see that people are pretty curious about. It is super important to read through your entire contract and invoice fully before signing. You DO NOT want to come into a conflict later that you didn’t realize was in the contract. Once these 2 things are completed you are officially booked and we begin the phase of planning your engagement session and your wedding! LET THE PARTY BEGIN!!
Every photographer as their own process they like to use when booking their clients and this is definitely the way that I have found most successful. My biggest focus during the whole thing is to make sure I understand you, what you want, and to make sure we will be a great fit for each other. On top of that, I want this to be as stress free for you as possible! So if you have any questions or are ready to get this party started, you now know where to find me! 😜
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