There are a million and a half lists out there telling couples what they "should" ask any potential wedding photographer. Just google "questions for wedding photographers" and there are pages and pages of people telling you what to ask to make sure you get all the info you need to make an informed decision. Don't get me wrong a lot of them are very valid questions, such as "How long after the wedding before I see my photos?" and "Do you have insurance?" Those are fair and important questions that every couple should ask. But when I'm chatting on the phone, or having a cup of coffee with a couple the questions that I want them to ask go beyond the technical questions.
All those lists of questions you found on google- they give you a lot of insight into how the company does business but they don't give you any insight into the actual person that you are hiring. Hopefully couples have read the "about me" page on the photographers website, they know that they prefer Pepsi over Coke, that they have a cute little cockapoo puppy and likely that they first fell in love with photography at age 14. But what about all the things that make you excited to have that person be with you for 8 +/- hours on your wedding day? Here is a list of questions that I wish I was asked by more of my couples:
1. Why do you shoot weddings? 2. What is your favorite and least favorite parts of a wedding day to photograph? 3. Will you travel for our wedding? (the answers is YES- I have a passport and am ready to go!) 4. Will you be out on the floor dancing with us at the end of the night? 5. What is the best part of being a wedding photographer? 6. How many weddings do you shoot in a year? in a month? in a weekend? 7. What is the best piece of advice you can give us while we are planning our wedding day? 8. What about us as a couple and our wedding excites you about working with us?
The key is there is more to hiring a photographer then the nuts and bolts of the contract and package. Of course you have to find someone who fits your budget, has a package that works for you and be sure they run a reputable business. Just don't forget that you are going to be spending a lot of time with this person on your wedding day. Brides- you may spend more time with your photographer then your groom. Take a few moments to ask just a few other questions to make sure the person you hire is someone who you are excited to see on your wedding day, someone you are comfortable with and above all someone you want to hug or at the very least high five at the end of the day!