The Tennessean and The Star News Feature: Finding the best Photographer for your wedding

This is copied word for word from the Tennessean article by Hollie Deese, for the Sumner county Wedding Issue Spring 2015 :)

January 29, 2015   Hollie Deese, For Sumner County Publications, The Tennessean

People put a lot of pressure on themselves to make sure they get the absolute best pictures on their wedding day, and for good reason. After all, it is probably going to be one of the more pricey affairs they’ll ever have on a day they look absolutely incredible. Good photographic documentation is necessary.

Choosing a photographer whose work you love is easy — just look at their portfolio. But finding one who you won’t mind being around for maybe 8-10 hours, shooting intimate moments of the big day from getting dressed to first kiss, is another matter. That’s why meeting in person before booking is key to getting it right.

“Communication with your photographer is the most important part of figuring out what you want and what you can expect,” says Anjeanette Ridner Hoer of Anjeanette Illustration Photography in Hendersonville. “See the photographers portfolio, meet up with ones you like, ask questions, just get to know them.”

In-your-face photographers

With the rise in popularity of candid shots, photographers can get pretty up close and personal with the couple and their guests. This can result in some incredible shots, but the sometimes-aggressive style also can cause some seriously cranky guests. It’s best to know up front what to expect.

“Each photographer will have their own shooting style, so it’s important to find out what will work with your wishes,” says Ridner Hoer. “Weddings are serious affairs as well as the largest parties of your life. Because of the emotional and serious nature of the commitment two people are making before their families, I do feel my job is to be a silent observer. I am there to record your memories and as such should not be in your face or conspicuous.”

She will, however, make herself known when it comes time to wrangle unruly groups together for the necessary posed shots and suggests groups get as many done before the service as possible in order to maximize celebration time.

“I will potentially use my ‘mom’ voice so that your time is handled smoothly and efficiently and you can be on your way to a cake and dancing,” she says.

To give even more time back to brides to celebrate, she is even asking all of her future brides to do wedding portraits before the wedding day once the dress is fitted. “Of course, those will be kept under lock and key and certainly not released until after the wedding,” she says.

Nashville wedding Photographer Anjeanette Illustration

Cell phone use

Over the past decade there has been a new and highly invasive guests at weddings, and that is guests’ cell phones. Love them or hate them, they are not going away, although more and more brides are asking guests to not use them during the ceremony, some even going so far as to have guests check their phones for many reasons. Some just want their guests to be present in the moment. Others don’t want social media flooded with images before the reception even starts.

But many more couples are realizing that a guest with a cell phone can ruin any number of key moments from the wedding, a wedding they are paying a decent amount of money to a professional to capture for them.

“Many memories have been ruined with excited relatives snapping away with camera flashes,” she says. “I may not be able to Photoshop out a large pink bedazzled iPad from the front of your first kiss.”

She has even shot a wedding where a well-meaning relative videotaped the entire ceremony with his phone — by standing directly behind the officiant.

“There was no way for me to discreetly ask him to shift a bit, and so he is in every single ceremony photo,” she says. “His phone is literally right between their heads.”

Instead, she suggests guests save the camera phones for the reception when all the action happens and the photographer can’t possibly catch it all.

“I cannot be everywhere for all the fun moments all around the room, and they will be so fun to look through and share with the happy couple later,” she says.

Preparing a Plan B

Nashville Wedding Photographer Anjeanette Illustration

Even the best laid plans can be derailed, and the weather can be the top wild card for brides who attempt an outdoor affair. That’s why it is important to choose a photographer who can quickly adjust to any situation.

“Check with your venue for rain or inclement weather spots and double check that there are also various spots for wedding photos and ceremony areas that you like,” Ridner Hoer says. “See it for yourself, and make plans for a large tent regardless of the forecast. Another outdoor concern is bright sun and harsh shadows if you get married at high noon. Make sure your photographer has experience with a variety of weather and indoor or outdoor lighting conditions.”

She says it’s more than OK to ask for photo samples from weddings in similar situations to yours and take into account the time of day for the ceremony.

“Research sunset times and ask your photographer about the ‘Golden Hour,’ the best time for outdoor photos,” she says.

If all else fails she comes equipped with pretty umbrellas and a positive attitude.

Screen shot 2015-01-29 at 9.32.52 AM

“Know that something weird will happen on your day,” she says. “Some little thing may not work, or someone may be late. The schedule is probably going to run over somewhere at some point. A candle may not light. Deep breaths — it’s all going to be beautiful. Remind yourself that nothing silly like that is going to destroy your wedding.”

“I am an available light photographer- meaning I use BOTH natural light and flash photography for rich saturated images and beautiful skin. I like artistic textures and overlays on your images. Know what a photographers portfolio looks like to see what you can expect at YOUR wedding! Know what people look like in your photographer’s portfolio, but please do not ask them to change their shooting style or you to a size that is not your own."

More tips from a photographer

To achieve lasting images, Anjeanette Ridner Hoer of Anjeanette Illustration Photography in Hendersonville offers up the following:

1. “Have confidence in yourself, happiness and a real smile is the best advice I can give. You are beautiful. Period. All anyone is looking for is that smile and sparkling eyes as you come down the aisle. “

2. “In regards to makeup, I really prefer professionally applied makeup that is well set. Avoid using makeup you would not normally or have never used before, extra makeup that is not waterproof, and avoid shimmery glittery powders if you have not seen a professional photo of yourself with them before. They often appear glossy or shiny.”

3. “Yes, Photoshop is an awesome tool, but a wedding is a real live event, and you should want to be able to recognize yourself in your photos. I do not do severe heavy body work. I will remove a bulge that is not really you, but a product of a pose or dress seam. I make skin glow, and I pose and shoot to complement your beauty. I may do more or less Photoshop work than you know if I am doing it right.”

Nashville Wedding Photographer Anjeanette Illustration in the Tennessean online

4. “I am an available light photographer- meaning I use BOTH natural light and flash photography for rich saturated images and beautiful skin. Some photographers use one or the other exclusively. I like artistic textures and overlays on your images, and some photographers prefer none and do no alterations. Know what people look like in your photographer’s portfolio, but please do not ask them to change you to a style that is not your own. Or be prepared to pay additional edit fees if you want extensive work.”

http://www.tennessean.com/story/news/local/sumner/2015/01/27/choose-wedding-photographer/22427743/

Visit Nashville Wedding Photographer Anjeanette Illustration on Google+

www.AnjeanetteIllustrationPhotography.com

From Anjeanette:

I was so blessed to be contacted by Hollie Deese from the Tennessean, and she did a wonderful job of compiling and making sense of my answers! I did not have an opportunity for this interview to reference or cite the many photographers, articles and blogs I have read that I am certain influenced my answers. There are so much information and blogs on the subject when you Google it. There are many ways to find the right wedding photographer, and of course I would love to be considered as yours!