Frequently Asked Questions Page

Top 10 Things You Should Know Before Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

Choosing the right wedding photographer for your wedding can be a daunting and bewildering experience. That's why I've put together a helpful series of emails and articles to help you ensure that you choose the right photographer for you and your wedding day. 

I do hope that will be me, however, it's important that you make the right decision (even if that is not me) so enter your details and I'll send you the top 10 things you should know before choosing your wedding photographer, along with my brochure to help you make the right decision for you and your wedding

I had no idea choosing a photographer would be so difficult - there are so many to choose from and such a range of prices. I’ve only got one chance with this so it is important that I make the right choice but I don’t know where to start or what questions I should be asking as this is all so new to me.

By choosing me to photograph your special day, you are taking away one of the most difficult decisions of your planning. I will be able to help you with any aspect of your planning so that you can draw on my wedding day experience should you need help with any part of your wedding day planning. After your special day I want you to be able to relive it time and time again like it was only yesterday. Those memories should be so strong that you can still smell your perfume, the gorgeous flowers you chose so carefully and those feelings when you said those magic two words ‘I do’. And after all of this is done I want to leave you with a stunning wedding album to hold those memories in; your very first family heirloom.

I have no idea which shots I want captured during my wedding day or which are the important ones to have, I just know that I want to remember my amazing day. Everything seems so daunting and there are so many choices to make - from group photos, to particular images we want to how many images and what kind of albums or style we want. I don’t know where to start.

You don’t have to worry about which photos you want captured as I will use my experience and skill to capture all of the important moments of your wedding so that you can be confident that you will preserve and cherish the memories of your amazing day. I know from my own experience how daunting all the choices are for you, so I will help and guide you every step of the way – from deciding what to include in your group photo list, through which is the best album and style for you, to choosing how many and which are the best images to include in your album so that it tells the perfect story of one of the happiest days of your life.

My wedding photography is incredibly important to me and I would be devastated if the photographs weren’t good or the photographer missed important moments - after all you can’t go back and do it again. I’ve seen the horror stories in the papers with the dreadful photography that looks like it was taken by a 6 year old - I don’t want to risk making that mistake as the photographs will become such an important reminder of my amazing day.

My promise to you – I know how important your wedding day is and I will ensure that you have a collection of beautiful images to relive your magical day time and time again, both together and with your family and friends. My many years of experience enables me to see things before they have happened so that nothing is missed allowing you to relax and enjoy your special day safe in the knowledge that I am taking care of your memories. The resulting images will be amazing and truly show the fun and excitement of the day.

The photographer’s personality is really important to me. I feel uncomfortable in front of the camera as it is, let alone when there is so much attention on me and I don’t want someone who is going to make me feel awkward and tense as I will already be feeling really nervous and self-conscious. Especially as they are going to be around for so much of the day and during intimate and personal moments - I don’t want to be spending that time with someone who is just “doing a job” and doesn’t help me look my best in front of the camera.

Throughout your time in front of camera I will help ease your nerves and put you completely at ease, along with your guests too. I’m naturally calm and patient and like to have a little fun, which will also help ease any last minute butterflies even when you’re not in front of the camera. My passion for weddings, and photography, will ensure you look amazing on your wedding day. I will be with you for most of your special day, and will use my years of experience to instinctively know when to step back and when to step in so that you can be confident that you will have amazing photographs and you won’t even remember me being there half the time. I want you to have the most fun and best day ever.

Planning a wedding is a whole new experience for us, it is daunting and scary and we weren’t too sure where to start. We want everything to be just right, especially as all our guests will be watching. There is so much conflicting advice out there when it comes to wedding photography - from asking a friend to invest in the best photographer you can afford. Then there are the scare stories about photographers who have let clients down, were difficult to get hold of, made people feel nervous and stressed or just delivered the bare minimum.

With years of experience of weddings and actually planning styled weddings on a regular basis I am available to help anytime, and that’s with any aspect of your wedding day. I’m more than ‘just a wedding photographer’ I am passionate about weddings and want you to feel you can ask for help. This is how I take any worries or stress away from you to make the entire journey from beginning to the big day and after a fantastic experience.

I caught my partner googling “cheap wedding photographers”, but this is one of the few things we get to take away from the day so I want to be sure that when I look back I feel that it was money well spent and that there was nothing else I would rather have spent money on for our wedding.

I appreciate that wedding photography may seem expensive, especially when you see some of the cheap offers out there. But let me ask you, can you even put a price on the value of those priceless memories that you will be able to cherish for years to come, that will bring you so much joy? Your wedding photography is one of the few things that you will keep beyond your wedding day, long after the celebrations are over. In fact your wedding album will be one of the few tangible items that you invest in. So don’t you want to ensure that the photographer you trust with documenting such an important part of your family history is a trusted professional with experience you can depend upon?

What inspired you to start working in Photography?

From starting as a portrait photographer and enjoying a few weddings as a guest I was asked to photograph a friend of my wives. I spent quite a lot of time and investment on training prior to it. When the day came around I loved it and to this day I still do.

How far in advance do I need to book with you?

ASAP is really the answer.
I do have some space this year, next year is booking up and I’ve even had a couple of enquiries for 2022.

What information do you need from me before the wedding day?

Apart from the obvious, date, time of ceremony and venue, very little. I always take time to have a chat with you prior to booking and then 6 weeks before your special day. I get all the information I need then.

Here's the big question......... What is included in your packages and how much is it?

My most popular package consists of:
· Photography from the exciting anticipation of getting ready, right through to after your first dance.
· All your images (approx. 300) beautifully edited and available to download. 
· USB drive containing all of your images with licence to copy and print.
· A highlights slideshow of your wedding day to music.
· A pre wedding meeting to talk about your wedding and the finer details, share guidance and advice so that you feel confident that all of your questions are answered and ready for your big day. 
· A sneak peek of around 20 images approximately 2 days after your special day.
· An online gallery for you to share with your family and friends to relive the memories and moments that seemed to flash by in a blur on the day.
Pro Tip: remember that if the price seems high it’s because wedding photography does not simply include the time that you see the photographer. It is more than a few hours work and usually involves anything from three days to a week’s work in total when you take into account all the preparation, admin, image processing, album design, and delivery.

The pricing page is here: https://www.paulswiftphotography.com/wedding-pricing-information/

Can we request a list of specific shots we would like? How do you help couples compile their shot list?

Yes, though unless there’s anything specific I keep the list to the required groups. As an example 8-10 can take upto 30 minutes of your time. There’s no setlist you HAVE to have but I can suggest.

Pro tip: There’s no way to specify every single image you’d like throughout the day, but most photographers love getting a list of family photos you want to have (including specific pairings of people!), as well as the event’s key moments.

Can I customise a package to fit my needs?

Just ask, I’ll see what I can do. Anything, mid-week weddings, short winter weddings, try me.

What sets you apart from other wedding photographers?

I have a natural calmness which can help to settle any nerves on your wedding day. I also have a lot of energy to help you along during the day, to keep you calm and looking natural during your portrait session.
An ability to know when to step in and lend a hand or to stand back out of the way. It’s often said by brides and grooms, “you’ve be way more than just our photographer today!”

My packaging is also quite different in that most others including other areas of service require their final fees 28 days before your big day. I don’t. I offer a couple of ways from full at the time of booking to payment plans via direct debit. This means that you don’t have to worry about paying any bills to your photographer immediately before your wedding when so many of your vendors are asking for money

How would you describe your photography style (e.g. traditional, photojournalistic, fine-art, moody)?

I shoot in what could be classed as ‘portrait journalism’. It’s a modern approach but includes more traditional aspects too.

Mostly I work a free-flowing day with occasional time for photographs – a few traditional group images along with a set of beautiful bride and groom portraits

I like to keep you with your guests for as much of the day as possible.

What happens if it rains?

We live in England; it rains. We mainly work inside or with shelter. For the bride and groom portraits, I have a white umbrella in my car.

See here:

https://www.facebook.com/PaulSwiftPhotography/posts/3095471770467623

Do you shoot weddings in digital, film format, or both?

Both are available but primarily digital.

I love to shoot film. Here’s a few images. The first being from Daniela and Dave‘s wedding and then the following images are of my boys. I adore the look. Whilst technically imperfect in the clean digital world we now live in, these are full of grain and just have something about them that digital doesn’t do.

Film photography

Film photography

Film photography

Film photography

Have you ever shot a wedding at our ceremony and reception venues? If not, do you plan to check the venues out in advance?

If I haven’t, this is my response………

Great question – I haven’t shot here before.

With so many wedding venues in northern England it’s impossible to have been to them all, even photographing 35 – 40 weddings per year and after 10 years!

Truth is, I love photographing weddings at new venues.

So it’s not always about knowing where the best areas of a venue are – I can walk around beforehand and do just that.

More important is knowing and understanding light and how to best use it on any given day, especially with our changeable weather. A venue will look and photograph very differently from one day to the next, or even from one hour to the next, which is why this is such an important skill to look for when choosing your photographer.

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Top 10 Things You Should Know Before Choosing Your Wedding Photographer

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If you like

  • the idea of a mostly free-flowing wedding day so that you can focus on enjoying and celebrating one of the most important days of your life
  • with occasional time for photographs…
  • you are looking for a few group images so that you don’t forget who shared your day with you…
  • And you want stunningly beautiful bride and groom portraits that will take your breath away …

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