Photographer – How to Hire

When considering which photographer to hire for your photo session, it’s important to do your research to ensure you choose the one that best gels with your style and budget. Check out these top five tips.

  1. Don’t be distracted by fancy marketing: Google doesn’t know the difference between a photographer with 25 years of experience and one with four months. It’s really easy to place a fancy ad in a wedding magazine and claim to be a seasoned professional. It’s even easier to order glossy sample cards and business cards. But what’s behind all that flashy marketing? So many photographers are great at making promises and marketing themselves but really bad at working with deadlines or producing quality products. A really good photographer won’t need to take out ads or plaster the sides of their car with their business logo. They are often booked up months or years ahead of time just based on referrals. Dig deeper and ask each one what their experience is. Ask your family and friends which photographers they use and trust.
  2. Avoid heavy-handed photo editors: With today’s available technology, it’s easy for anyone to become a “photographer.” While the use of Photoshop or Lightroom can be OK in moderation, you don’t want to hire a photographer who has a history of heavily manipulating their photos. True professionals don’t need to rely on such effects to create great photos. To be sure, ask to see unedited versions of the shoot and compare them to the finished versions. A reputable photographer will only use tools like Photoshop for stylistic effect, not to cover up mistakes. Bottom line is, those tools should be used to enhance photos, not fix them.
  3. Don’t look for fancy equipment: Photographers are true professionals whether they do this on the side, are supported by a side job, or view it as a full time job. Either way, they don’t look forward to dropping $3,000 on the latest camera that won’t really make them better at their craft. They need a few essentials, such as a solid camera and some lenses. After that, it’s all fluff. Don’t dismiss a photographer who doesn’t have a whole room full of fancy equipment. It’s more important about what goes on behind the camera and the magic they can make with what they have. That’s where the true talent comes in.
  4. Experience is the most important thing. New photographers are akin to newbie drivers. They don’t really know how to best operate the equipment and as a result make a lot of rookie mistakes. Experience is the only remedy – it doesn’t come from a class. Much more important than fancy equipment and flashy logos is how comfortable a photographer feels behind the lens. Look for someone with at least five years of experience.
  5. Investigate prices. Generally, prices are in line with experience. Don’t be fooled by rock bottom prices. That usually means they’re desperate for work. Don’t be scared of high prices. True professionals with the experience to match can command any price they want because they’re worth it. They are often booked up months and years ahead of time so they have to keep increasing their rates to keep pace.

Contact AJK Photography

We make it easy to choose a true professional. Check out what AJK Photography has to offer. Then schedule a consult with us or call 732-618-3813.