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How to choose your wedding photographer in India: a guide for our NRI brides

Updated: Sep 26, 2023

Wedding planning is no easy feat for an NRI bride. Add time zones & distances to this task and you've just turned a sprint into a cross country marathon.

Brides being adorned with kaleeras by her sisters

Dheera takes the help of her sisters to tie her kaleeras before walking down the aisle

Research not only online, but reflect internally on what is your personal style and preference. Before scrolling through Instagram, spend sometime figuring out what the two of you value most and what your personal style is, keeping aside trends. We would also suggest giving thought to factors important to you while working with someone. Does professionalism trump budget? Would you prefer to work with someone where you're on the same wavelength communication wise? Having this as a benchmark before you delve into researching wedding photographers will help you navigate the abundance of information out there.

Fun lighthearted couple portait taken outdoors

You want to be as carefree in the presence of your photographer as Rashmi & Nandan were here

While researching, it's helpful to do it broadly in the order: style, budget and communication.

  • Style: Shortlist photographers who match your style and aesthetic. For example, if you're into candid/documentary style look for photographers who do this genre well. Tip: Look at websites for more in-depth look into their portfolio than just the Instagram feed which can be very limiting.

  • Budget: Among the ones who's style you liked, get in touch, share your details and start to get an idea of the costs involved. You are likely researching this without much of an idea what the market standard for wedding photography is in your specific location. Who's at the premium end and who's at the mid range. The more wedding photographers you speak to, you should start to see a pattern that the quality of work does commensurate with the costs involved. (Though of course this isn't necessarily always the case). This step would allow you to get an idea of the investment in a good wedding photographer and re-calibrate if need be.

  • Communication: Saving the most critical for the last. You want to choose someone to capture your big day with whom you have an ease of communication. On your wedding day you are likely to spend an enormous amount of time in the presence of your photographers. If you're going to be sharing physical space with someone for this length of time - you want to have someone you're comfortable and get along with. You want to speak to an actual human being who is going to be shooting your wedding day before you make a decision. This is your chance to get to know them, get a feel for who they are and understand their approach. Ultimately all things equal on budget and style - you want to go with someone you trust. And this conversation goes a long way in establishing that. Tip: ask as many questions as you need during this chat - will you be at the wedding yourself or just send a team (this is a major red flag if the person you're speaking to wont be the one shooting), do you take on multiple weddings on the same day, if yes- how is that managed, ask them about their process. Getting to know your photographers will help immensely towards being more relaxed in front of the camera on the big day thus leading to more authentic and natural shots.

Getting up close personal shots like this is only possible when you and your family are completely at ease in the presence of your photographers

Review. Once you've had your conversations with photographers whose work you like and are within your budget, it's time to review your research.

  • Look at what other couples have to say about them. Feel free to get in touch with their previous clients to have a chat as well

  • This is often overlooked - but ask to see an entire wedding set of their work. This will include all the photos, ones that didn't make the social media cut and allows you to check for consistency. This step can often guide in you choosing someone who's consistently good with their work vs someone skilled at curating their social media

  • Study their contract details. All the deliverables, timelines, team size, what options do they have in case last minute changes. How are travel costs going to be handled. You want to have all of this in a written form to avoid any surprises or misunderstandings in the end

Choosing your wedding photographer in India ultimately involves a thorough research & review process to start with, and going with your gut in the end. Surround yourself with kind hearted professionals who value getting to know you and your story. Their support will make all the difference!

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