"I wish I had hired a better wedding photographer." I've heard these words all too often and every time I do it makes my heart ache a little.
When I was a kid, my mom had boxes and drawers filled with old photographs. I used to love digging through them and looking at my mom, dad, and other family members when they were younger. I would hear stories of the times in their life that I knew nothing about, and we had so much fun reliving these memories. I think this was when I started seeing the importance in photography, not just for your wedding day, but for life in general. However, your wedding is one of the biggest days of your life, so why would you not want stunning photographs to remember it by?
Photography was obviously a top priority when I got married. I never understood when I would read wedding blogs or magazines that had photography towards the bottom of a Bride's "typical" priority list. If you think about it, after all is said and done, your wedding photos will be the only tangible item left from your big day. The flowers will have wilted, the music stopped, the cake has been cut, and the dress will be packed away. What's left are the photographs for you to remember all the amazing details of this beautiful day you spent a year (or more) of your life planning for!
Your wedding photographs are also the only way you'll be able to relive this amazing day and share it with the people who weren't there. Your children, grandchildren, and even great-grandchildren will be able to look through your album with you and share the wonderful memories you have of this day. Your photographs should not just be a bunch of pictures, but should be an accurate depiction of the love, beauty, and fun of your wedding day.
I know some of you are reading this and thinking "but what if we can't afford it?". When I say prioritize wedding photography, I don't necessarily mean going out and hiring the most expensive wedding photographer in your area. While yes, you are going to pay more for an experienced, professional wedding photographer, what I mean when I say wedding photography should be a top priority is that you should be maximizing your photography budget and not making photography the first thing you cut in order to save money. Once you do have your budget set, you should be finding a professional photographer in your price range and doing your due diligence when it comes to hiring someone. You should be asking questions to ensure that your photographer is prepared to shoot weddings. You should be looking at samples of their work to make sure you absolutely love it. You should be meeting with them in person for a consultation to be sure your personalities click (since you will be spending anywhere from 8-12 hours on your wedding day with them!). You should be taking all the steps necessary to ensure you don't look back on your wedding photos and think "I wish I had hired a better photographer."
Your wedding day will be one of the best days of your life. You and your guests will have had so much fun and the only thing you'll be leaving with are your memories. Trust me, you'll want your wedding photographs to be as spectacular as the wedding itself!