Oh, the hunt for a photographer started first. We had ideas and thoughts about what we wanted for the wedding. But I had enthusiasm and deep interest in picking THE best photographer. (Insert translation: This will be a very, very long process.)
Step 1. The search
It seemed like this could be a the most simple step on the long list of wedding to-dos. I have a very organized co-worked who shared his list from his own wedding photographer selection. His list was over 50 photographers long – with over a dozen attributes researched on it. Seems like it could be a simple excel filter – and a quick short list.
But no. Not so fast. His short list had to be augmented. I needed to research. Flip through local magazines. Be inspired by websites. Dig through blogs. Hours later…no days (really more than two weeks), I had my short list to share with Bill. He was fine with all three.
Step 2. The short list
So I reached out to the short list. Three photographers. One meeting immediately. One was traveling in Costa Rica (and to my surprise, she did respond with a real message instead of a canned note). And the third – totally blew the response with a form email.
The meeting wasn’t good or bad. It just didn’t feel 100%. Bill felt his style was pure photojournalist and he wanted the romance photos of me (not sure where he would put them up as I don’t want those super mushy photos on display in my – ah, our – house!)
The Costa Rica traveler wasn’t back for a few weeks, form email didn’t even deserve my time (can’t be creative in an email, I don’t believe you can be creative when taking photos) so we moved on to other wedding plans. Like we really needed a location. That side-tracked us for a bit.
And during that time, I realized via Facebook that a former fun co-worker had branched out on his own to start a photography – including weddings – business. Decided after digging through his blog that he could be our missing photographer. Email exchanges ensued. And lead to meeting day/time suggestions but never confirmations.
Step 3. The selection
Time passed. Circled back with both our Costa Rica traveler and the former co-worker. Meeting confirmed. Well, one. Costa Rica traveler, aka Stephanie, had a great house, a noisy cat, and the right attitude for us. The experience of meeting her in person sealed the deal. It wasn’t the photos she shared or the words she said, it was the conversation that showed she was a fit for our kind of event. And the contract was signed. On to the next action item…