August 9, 2012

How to do the photographer research

Modern brides are becoming more and more conscious about the photographers these days. I feel a good wedding photographer is as important as the bridal trousseau, jewellery, MUA, etc. Your love towards everything else diminishes as you grow up – God forbid but your lehenga might not fit you, your jewellery might become outdated, etc. But what keeps you close to your most special day of your life is the photographs. These photos stay with you forever. They will help you relive the happy moments. Good or Bad – They are yours!

Personally, I love going through wedding albums (Only of those weddings where I know everybody). We (all my cousins) had a yearly family wedding album session every summer, where the kids removed all the old wedding albums and spend hours laughing over how funny we looked a few years back. In all these years I have learnt one thing - a good photographer can make an OK-ish bride look stunning but at the same time the loveliness of a beautiful bride will not show up if not photographed well.

Candid photography is what modern brides are looking at these days. Wikipedia says, “A candid photograph is a photograph that is made either without the subject's knowledge or without their explicit permission, hence they are captured unposed” For those who are well versed with F.R.I.E.N.D.S – My guy and brother behave like Chandler in the engagement pics episode. They are extremely photogenic but just hate posing. So I am totally pro-candid photography! Just that it is mind bogglingly expensive based upon the photographers experience.

Some photographers charge you lakhs of rupees per day. The need to spend so much money on photographs is debatable but these photographers surely put in a lot of effort and dedication to charge handsomely. Although, I must alert you brides that there are MANY photographers in the market who charge you a bomb and are not worth it! Please do your research carefully. There are dozens of other better photographers in half the price. A good photographer need not be expensive!!

How I did my research:
·         Spent days on checking out wedding albums on facebook.
·         Created a list of photographers I liked along with their email id’s, phone numbers and rated them on a scale of 1-5. I also included some who were so-so (Just to set a bar and compare prices).
·         Contacted wedding photographers in Mumbai through Just-Dial. Asked them to mail me their work. Included the ones I like in the list.
·         Created the wedding itinerary (dates, timing, number of hours required, special requests, etc)
·         Sent an enquiry mail to all the shortlisted photographers.
·         Further shortlisted 3-5 photographers based on their quotations and my ratings.
·         I am now about to meet these photographers to know them more and negotiations.

Things to remember:
·         You easily tend to like photographs with good objects especially wedding photographs. For eg: When you are in the Himalayas surrounded by snow clad mountains, you click with your eyes closed and manage to get a great picture. So compare at least 2 wedding albums of the same photographer before you rate them!
·         Give a date closest to your approximate date if your wedding date is not fixed yet.
·         Look for indirect signals like professionalism, courtesy and involvement in the responses. No matter how great an artist a photographer is, I don’t want a snobbish dictator anywhere close to me during my wedding! Look for somebody who is creative but at the same time is willing to understand your needs and work accordingly.
·         If you book the same photographer for a 2-3 day function you might be benefited in cash or in kind (For eg: I might get a pre/post wedding photo shoot at a location of my choice for free!)
·         While surfing through the photographs also look for trousseau and d├ęcor inspirations. Optimization you see!

PS: If you know any good budget photographers please post a comment. Help your fellow brides; you will surely be helped in return.

17 comments:

  1. Hey! What are the rates for a good candid photographer these days? Although you will have Bombay rates, I want to get an approx idea. Want to make sure I am not planning on overspending for candid.

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    1. I will be writing a post on this soon. But for starters, I got quotes ranging from 5K (pay seperately for stage photography) to 2L rupees. I found a few nice photographers at about 30K.

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  2. Mehul Chimthankar was the photographer at my wedding and I was very happy with the result. He is based in Pune. His website is clickmehul.com
    One of my very close friends, Tina Nandi, has just started her own photography business. She is based in Bangalore. You can check her work on tinanandiphotography.blogspot.com

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  3. Aditi, Any updates on your photographer search/results?

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    Replies
    1. I have a listed down a few good photographers. I can mail you the details if required.

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  4. Can you mail me details of a few shortlisted photographer in Mumbai?

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    Replies
    1. Sure! :) I will need your email I'd though..

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  5. Hi Aditi,

    I hope you are well now. I am following your blog around a year now and I really appreciate your work. Thanks for all the help and guidelines you have been providing through here. I am in US and basically from Delhi, so don't have any basic knowledge about Mumbai and vendor services there. Actually my sister is getting married in Mumbai, so wanted to ask you regarding this if you have and can provide us any list of Photographers that you think do good work, that would be great help.

    Neha

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much Neha. Pls write in to me with an approximate budget and I will do the needful. Email: marathiweddings at gmail dot com

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    2. Thanks so much Aditi, I have emailed you.

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    3. Check your email. Response sent!

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  6. Hi Aditi,

    I love reading your blog. I was a total bridezilla and controlled almost everything. I was blessed enough to have found my parents friend, Satish Malavade, who also happens to be a photographer for a leading newspaper in Mumbai to click me. I understood the importance of a good photographer when I saw his clicks and what the regular photographer had clicked.

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  7. Great to see the post in which value of good photography is appreciated and how that can work as magic. Also at the same time right approach is mentioned so that one finds photographer worthy for the price mentioned. I have begun now to photograph weddings and still not on that high end charge list :) please have a look at my little page: www.facebook.com/twocupsstudio/

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    ReplyDelete

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