"Order something really big and bring the rest home for me!" The bride informed me of her fiance's dinner request. And similarliy, my husband requested just the same. We laughed about our portion sizes before we got into the details of wedding photography. I don't know about you, but I certaintly can't eat two chicken breasts and a helping of potatoes the size of my face PLUS another side all by my little self.
Her big wedding day is just a few months out, and we wanted to get together to discuss the details of the event, specifically the wedding photography. Sure, she has been in a few weddings herself, but this time she's the bride. It's my job as her wedding photographer to listen to her photography needs and educate her on what will work best to achieve them. So, dinner commenced and the conversation began to flow...
What should a planning meeting with a wedding photographer look like? This is assuming you have already hired your particular wedding photographer, and are meeting about the details since some time and (much more) planning have taken place since your initial wedding photography meeting.
Talk about the Wedding - Personality & Important Details
Brides want to talk about their weddings! Don't you? A good wedding photographer will be listening intently as you describe the day as you imagine it will play out. This is how the photographer learns what you are expecting, the special moments you want to document and the overall flow of events. A skilled wedding photographer will discover needs & desires simply by asking questions, listening and taking notes. Brides should feel comfortable like they are talking to a friend!
Talk about Photography - Style & Desires
Even the most laid back bride is going to have an input on what types of pictures she hopes to recieve from the day. Chances are you have browsed the web, specifically pinterest and have an idea of what types of photos you love. And hopefully your preferences are similar to the photographer's wedding photography style. Since you've already seen their work and decided to hire them this is probably the case. As a bride, make sure you touch base on this. A great wedding photographer will stay true to their personal style & brand, but also find ways to satisfy their bride's wants & needs as well.
Talk Business - The Serious Stuff
Up until now, the bride has lead most of the conversation sharing the details that she has planned. At some point though, the wedding photographer will have to talk business. This is where the photographer will discuss shot lists (any specific must-have photographs), the amount of time needed to photograph each important event (bride and groom portraits, first looks, etc), and a photography timeline or schedule for the day.