Choosing a Photographer: California Engagement/Reception Photography

Hi everyone!

In this post, I’ll talk about my favorite subject: PHOTOGRAPHY ๐Ÿ˜€ Prior to jumping in the wedding market, I had no idea how much I should expect for wedding photography. I’ve heard few thousands here and there from friends, but everyone has different style, priorities, and budget, and I definitely didn’t want an amateur. My first step was to look through numerous wedding blogs and magazines, withย being my favorite (Here are the top 100 wedding blogs:ย, and after hours and hours of hard work I picked two photographers that fit the style and the level of quality I was looking for. I’m very picky with photography so I couldn’t find many that I liked (I would like the main chosen pictures, and upon visiting their website, the rest would be mediocre) but finally settled with few that I’ve thought was consistent.

But I guess I had picked out the most reputable ones in the beginning, because I was quoted from $5900~9000ย on average for a full day event + engagement photos. (engagement photos alone: $600~2000 depending on the package). Naturally, I thought this was the norm and thought of photography as an investment.

But what ultimately had me to wander elsewhere was their inflexible policies. The engagement session would be an hour to two hours max. In the case of the first photographer, the location was usually limited to one.ย The second team can be multiple, but it was still not recommended and I almost felt bad asking for how many times we can change clothes, different locations, etc. They were both very friendly, but ultimately, I needed a flexible photographer that would make me feel comfortable in playing out my ideas, instead of my worrying about their time and extra costs that would incur as a result. After all, it was my wedding.

So thank God I’m such a research freak, because I’ve found a select few that’s reasonable in price & even better in terms of their captures and quality. These guys just started about two years ago and they are awesome. They are exact style I was looking for and VERY professional in quality. They do not charge for extra hours in weddings, and the engagement shoots are generally done from 3~4PM until the sun setsย in as many locations and clothes change as you want. They work with your ideas and are overall very friendly people. Here are some of their photos:

So the lesson learned, DO YOUR RESEARCH, never settle, and hire ones that are flexible in terms of time. Although the ‘well known’ ones are great, hire ones that are just as great but less-well known. They are more affordable, flexible, and will really work hard for your special day.ย ย Our American engagement shoot is set for June 24, 2012ย which is my birthday. ๐Ÿ™‚ I can’t wait to see how my engagement and reception photos will turn out!

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