A new year is the ideal time to begin your wedding planning, and what better place to start than choosing a wedding photographer?  But where to start and what to look for can be a daunting task. So we’ve teamed up with some of The Story Of’s Directory Photographers to share their expert insights on finding your perfect match. 

1. Invest In The Best

It can be all-too-tempting to cut corners when it comes to photography or ask a friend to step in to take a few snaps, but your photographs are destined for mantelpieces, social feeds and family albums for years to come. What may seem like a huge investment on the first quote will be worth every penny on the big day and for years to come.

Just like paying for any professional service, you’re costing in someone’s years of experience and artistic eye. But how much should you be budgeting for photography? Anywhere upwards of £2,500 is a good ballpark figure for an experienced wedding photographer. 

While on your hunt for the perfect match, The Story Of. recommends using the following ‘credibility criteria’ to shortlist a few suppliers :

  • Consider their years of experience in the industry
  • Review their customer testimonials on google
  • Have they been published in any leading editorials? 
  • Have they won any photography awards? 

"Photographs are the only thing that you get to keep from the day that lasts forever, so they have to be right," - Real Bride, Ellie Roberston.

Photographer Olivia of Olivia and Dan breaks down the workload that goes on behind the scenes: “We leave each wedding with between 4,000 – 7,000 photographs. These are then uploaded for an initial edit to around 800-1000 images. Following that, we’ll spend days cropping, colour grading and making any lighting adjustments to that batch,” explains Olivia, “I’d say all in all, the editing process takes around 5 days start to finish.”  

It is a true labour of love – especially given that a wedding photographer usually shoots on average 40+ weddings per year. 

If you’re on the lookout for emerging talent, be sure to look at Rangefinders Rising Stars for a full rundown on new and noteworthy photographers.

2. Make Sure You Connect

Other than your partner, the photographer is probably the person you spend the most time with during the day. With this in mind, you’re going to want to get on. From getting ready in the morning, checking in on how you’re feeling during the day and making sure you have a drink to hand for those late-night dance-offs, your photographer is there to capture every moment. 

“Once you’ve found a photographer whose style you like, I recommend organising a call with them or meeting them for a drink,” says TSO Directory Photographer Jessica Williams. “It’s so important you feel comfortable around them – it will help get the best photographs possible.”

Photographer Melody Joy agrees: “I’ve found that meeting up with the couple before their wedding day makes such a difference, so you’re not formally introducing yourself on the day of their wedding. It helps create a friendship vs a client relationship. As a photographer, it’s genuinely made my photos better on the days of the couples who take the time to meet up.”


Each photographer will tend to have their own stylistic qualities, and connecting with their aesthetic is just as important as connecting with them. Take for example Nigel John’s signature architectural style, whereas Jessica William’s imagery veers towards more minimal, editorial sensibilities. If the photographer shoots brooding, cinematic imagery, and you plan to have bright, bold flowers, then perhaps they won’t capture those in the way you’d intended.

3. Ask to see a REAL wedding

Social media feeds only paint half the picture. Considering the sheer amount of imagery produced from one wedding, it’s always worth asking to see more examples of the photographer’s work at a real wedding.  

“Styled shoots’ (i.e editorial shoots that use a model, set, stylist etc) are becoming an increasingly key aspect of a wedding photographers portfolio,” says Olivia, “They’re such a different set-up form a live event – so making sure you’re looking at a real wedding day as a basis of work is super important.”

"Consistency is the key aspect you should look for when viewing a photographer's portfolio. The end result should be an album of polished, consistent images that paint a picture of your day from start to finish. "

4. Trust The Process

Trust your photographer’s style and experience above all else. Unless it’s their own work, we advise against showing them a pinterest board of images that you like the look of. The reason is; each wedding is unique and intrinsically different from the next – it’s unlikely they’ll be able to recreate that exact image, and it will immediately enforce creative restrictions. 

"Leave it to the experts to uncover your venue's best light, secret spots and impactful angles."

“When we got married, our photographer Nigel John spent some time in the morning finding all these secret spots inside our venue that I didn’t even know existed,” says The Story Of’s Editorial Director, Anna Ross. “Suddenly – we were round the back of the venue surrounded by beer barrels and old bike parts – the light was beautiful and the images made for something that gifted our album with both a sense of humour and immense cinematography.”

Finally, don’t fret over the weather. Although rain on your wedding day may seem like every bride’s worst nightmare, an experienced, high-end photographer has dealt with worse and more.

"Slightly overcast skies actually make for really atmospheric shots," Need more evidence? This image by Nigel John was shot on one of the rainiest days in London last August and is simply - perfect. 

5. Consider a Trial Run

Nervous about being in front of the camera? Many photographers offer a trial shoot ahead of the day to ease your nerves and get to know you as a couple a little better. 

Not only this, but you’re bestowed with an extra set of images to treasure forever. Miller Cole’s Fashion & Love in Luss is the perfect example of the wonders a trial-round can achieve ahead of your big day.