Award winning photographer Jonny Draper talks us through your wedding photography

Photography by Jonny Draper

Photography by Jonny Draper - Credit: Archant

Your wedding album is something that you will cherish your whole life, so it’s important you chose the right photographer for you. Named North West Photographer of the Year, in The Wedding Industry Awards, Jonny Draper offers his tips on what to look for and to expect from the person capturing your big day.

Choosing a wedding photographer can be a daunting process. What packages are available? How much do people charge? What style and approach do you want as a bride and groom? All very valid questions, but where do you actually start?

The best advice I can give you is to keep things as simple as possible. Decide on a ballpark budget, then spend time looking at different photographers work to identify the style of photographs that you envisage representing your big day. It can be a bit of a minefield out there - there are a lot of wedding photographers who offer a lot of very different things, but google is your friend and will help you get your heads round the sort of thing you want initially. I think the key thing to understand also, is that there is no ‘norm’ when it comes to packages and pricing. Everybody does things differently, so make sure you fully understand what you get for your money.

Great wedding photographers have a great online presence and their blogs can be a brilliant starting point in understanding what they offer. Actually googling your venue with the words ‘wedding photographs’ or ‘wedding photography’ within the sentence will help highlight photographers who have shot weddings there before, so you can see the different ways different photographers approach weddings at your venue. It goes without saying that this isn’t an exact science, just a little tip. Also, definitely don’t write off photographers who haven’t worked at your venue before. Us wedding photographers love shooting in new places and our experience working in all kinds of light and locations means that we won’t have a problem getting our heads round your venue.

Word of mouth and referrals are my biggest source of enquiries. Past brides and their friends and family recommend me. Venues, florists, entertainment, bridal boutiques, videographers - I get enquiries from all over the place! So speak to your venue, ask the ladies where you bought your dress, ask your friends who got married or went to a wedding recently - people will only recommend good people as otherwise it reflects badly on them!

Getting out there and meeting the photographer(s) whose work you love is very important. Remember that the photographer is often the only person apart from your guests that is there with you for the whole day, so it’s vital that you actually like them as a person as well as loving their work! Sure, ask the ‘sensible’ questions (do you have insurance, what happens if you’re ill, etc) but for me, it should be more about the ‘feel’ that you get. Will this photographer fit in with the other suppliers we’re going to be using? Will the style of their work suit our venue? Will they shout at our guests or will they be very discreet?

There are no rights and wrongs these days when it comes to your wedding. Brides and grooms know that they can do things their way, the way that will work best for them overall and for their family and friends and this certainly applies to the photography. If you don’t want to stand around for hours doing group photo after group photo then don’t! If having every family member in a photograph at your wedding is the most important thing, then do it!

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Every photographer out there approaches weddings in a different way, so choose something and someone that is right for you and your big day.


Jonny Draper, 07767 614686,