Toronto Glamour Photographer: Guest Post by Christa Hann {5 Tips to Hiring the Right Photographer For You}

Hey Friends! You might me remember me from the shoot that Amanda did of me a while ago. If not,..Hi! I’m Christa.

I’m a fellow photographer and friend of Amanda. I’m honoured that she has asked me to guest post while she’s enjoying Mexico…lucky girl!
Today I’d like to talk about picking the right photographer for you. In today’s society, there is no shortage of photographers. Heck you might even own your own digital SLR and consider yourself an amateur too. Not to mention, you know at least 3 other people who has a really good camera too! So among all these photographers, how in the world do you even decide who to hire?
Here are my top 5 tips to help you out…
1) Know what kind of photos you want. 
If you don’t know what you want, then there’s no way to narrow down the right photographer for you. It seems simple enough, but really think about it. Do you want headshots? Do you want family portraits? Or do you want engagement photos? Are you wanting a little bit of everything? Decide what you want.
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2) Find a photographer who specializes. 
Now that you know what kind of photos you want, you can start looking for a photographer who does just that.
You can absolutely hire a photographer who shoots weddings, events, babies, pets, landscapes and random abstract objects. However, hiring a photographer who specializes gives you the peace of mind that they’re already fully equipped to do exactly what you’re hiring them to do. They would also have more experience than someone who’s spreads themselves thin.
Ever hear the saying “Jack of all trades. Master of none” It could apply here.
For example, you have a 7 day old newborn. You love those baby photos with cute props and all curled up like a perfect pea in a pod. Who do you trust? The photographer who only photographs newborns, has experience and knows all the safety precautions. Not to mention the normal behaviours of newborns. Or someone who dabbles in it a couple of times a year? As a Mom, I’m going to the expert. Not a risk I’m willing to take.
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3) Know their work.
Please please please look at the photographers website/blog, Facebook page and other forms of social media (Instagram anyone?) Are their photos really clean with minimal editing? Are their photos heavily photo-shopped? Are their photos all taken inside or outside? What’s your preference?
If you don’t see photos on their website that you saw on Pinterest, please do not email the photographer to say you want to hire them BUT then send an email with 20 photos from other photographers or even better a full Pinterest board that aren’t even close to their style.
I know for me personally, when I’m “in the moment” with a client, I very rarely go outside my style. It’s what comes natural to me, it’s what I’m passionate about. Hire the photographer for his or her artistic vision. If you don’t feel head over heels love for their photos or don’t “get” their photos, they are not the photographer for you.
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4) Don’t decide on price alone.
I know we all have budgets. I also know we will agree and disagree on what we think is cheap or expensive. I know women who will spend $400 on a pair of shoes and think it’s a great deal. I also know women who won’t spend over $50 on a pair of shoes and even then that’s a splurge.
As much as beauty is in the eye of the beholder. So is the value of price. It’s common to think photographers must have it so easy, they take a few photos, edit in photoshop and burn to a CD. I mean c’mon how expensive could that be?
BUT! And that’s a huge but….if they’re doing this as a full time job and as a legal business, not cash under the table, then it’s not cheap. There’s camera gear, taxes, business expenses like websites, advertising, accountants, insurance. Plus a salary to hopefully pay their bills and feed their kids.
If you do not value the price associated with that, then a photographer who charges what you think is expensive, is not the photographer for you. If you don’t think they’re work is “worth that” then don’t hire them. You’ll be so focused on the money that you won’t appreciate the beautiful photos that you receive. However as a photographer I will argue the value of portraits and the investment of documenting this time right now in your life. The only regret I’ve heard was for the photo not taken after it was too late.
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5) Get to know them.
I would recommend following the photographers you love on social media. It’ll give you a good idea of what they’re like as a person. However, this one could be tricky. Since most of us filter what we put on social media it may be a false personality that’s being portrayed. Like anything, take it with a grain of salt.
Some photographers blog regularly about their personal lives which is a great way to get to know them. If they have kids and you don’t, that might drive you crazy. If you’re a Mom who loves Friends re-runs (only me on the Friends re-runs?) you already know you have something in common.
Here’s where I would highly recommend asking a friend which photographer they used for their baby, wedding, portraits… and what they thought of them? Check them out and go from there. Some photographers even give product credit to past clients who refer them new clients, win – win for everyone.
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And there you have it, my top 5 tips. Are there any that I missed? What else would you add to this list? Thanks for making it to the end of this post and I’d love to see your own suggestions and thoughts in the comments. Hope you’re having a great day!
To see more of Christa’s beautiful work, visit her on the web at http://www.christahannphotography.com
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I’m Guest Posting » Christa Hann - […] Today I’m guest posting over on Amanda’s blog, you might remember her from the shoot I did of her earlier this year.  While she’s in fabulous Mexico, I’m sharing my top tips on picking the best photographer for you. So head on over and show her blog some love!  You can find the link to my post HERE. […]

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