Looking for a photographer was not an easy process by any means.
I don’t think I’m being extremely original when I say that photography was a HUGE priority for us. Actually, scratch that, it was our NUMBER one priority. Seriously, you could have the perfect venue, the most amazing dress, the loveliest cake, the cutest details…all of it means squat if you don’t have a talented professional to capture it all on film. Not just capture it, capture well. I mean, you’re spending all this time and money trying to make it all perfect, but who’s gonna take gorgeous pictures to make the memories last a lifetime?
So, once we had the WHERE and WHEN figured out, we set out to find the perfect photographer. I started stalking countless magazines, blogs, and websites for photographers that caught my eye. I really wanted to do my due diligence and was convinced that I had to see all my choices in order to make an informed decision. Well, I’m sorry to say my overly enthusiastic approach was a really terrible idea! It wasn’t long until I became overwhelmed; there were so many different styles and looks to chose from! So many photographers, each talented in their own unique way!
I decided to become more methodical in my search, and eliminated any photographer that didn’t elicit an emotional response from me (really not a very difficult criteria to fulfill—I cry at the drop of a dime). I also became very critical and eliminated those who routinely produced unflattering photographs of the bride. The most common offenders were the triple-chin shot, mono-boob blob, and back-fat fiasco, none of which should be featured in wedding pictures. I’m sorry, but if those are the pictures that make it onto your site or blog, I’m not very impressed in your abilities. Wedding photography 101: make the bride look beautiful, even amidst the ugly-cry.
I forwarded my favorite ones along to Mr. W, the parentals, and my bridesmaids for feedback. Slowly, we started zeroing in on the aesthetic we most responded to: photojournalism, with a hint of editorial.
We zeroed in on one particular company and emailed them about a quote. Once again, I had been clueless about the market and was not pleasantly surprised to find out that I was off, way off—several thousand dollars off…
At this point, it’s safe to say that I just about had a stroke. Just because something was my number one priority did not mean I was willing to go over budget by three times the amount that I had initially allotted to it. At first, I thought it was the photographer in question that was expensive, but after other quotes started trickling in, I realized their prices were pretty fair.
After having a disappointing “free e-shoot” experience with a rookie photographer that we found on Craigslist, we decided that hiring a professional would be a much better use of our money. This time around, we were better prepared and knew the going rate for what we wanted.
Well, for all the time I spent building the list, we finally hired a photographer who wasn’t even on it!
It seems like we found Bachmann Photography by pure luck, like with our church and date. We were touring our venue when we noticed the framed photos lining the walls of the bridal suite. This photo in particular completely took our breath away.
We immediately asked our coordinator for the name of the amazing mystery photographer and emailed Jesse as soon as we got his contact info. Shorty after, I received a phone call from his lovely wife and associate, Catherine. As it turns out, they shoot weddings as a duo! We knew early on that we wanted two shooters to allow different vantage points and make sure all those little moments were being captured, so we were BEYOND thrilled. As a bonus, Mr. W and I loved the idea of having a married couple as our dream photography team. Talk about working closely together!
What drew us to Bachmann Photography was how timelessly elegant their photos look. Remember my love of black and white photos? Well, they consistently deliver shots like these:
Like I said, the style we were most attracted to was photojournalism with a hint of editorial. We wanted lovely candid shots to show the emotions of the day as they unfold:
But we also wanted some elegant posed portraits, like these:
I was really impressed with how elegant and beautiful they made all their couples look! They also take some very bad-ass photos of grooms and their guys, which won over Mr. W.
There is something really beautiful in the way they capture light that I can’t quite put my finger on, but I LOVE IT.
Oh, and their party shots are AMAZING! I feel like I’m in the room, dancing up a storm!
On a personal level, we knew we had hit it off when Mr. Waterfall made an inappropriate joke and they actually laughed! It was so important to me that we clicked with our photographers. I mean, we would be spending more time with them than anyone else that day! And while you don’t have to be besties, it doesn’t hurt if they can crack a few jokes and make you feel comfortable.
Since they were the first photographers we interviewed, I wanted to meet with a few more just to be sure, but we booked Bachmann the following week!
Since then, we’ve emailed back and forth quite a few times, and I have to say that we couldn’t be happier with our choice! Jesse has been an absolute pleasure to work with; he always answers my emails and questions in such detail and with such patience! He even emails me when he’s swamped to let me know that he’ll call me later.
They also worked a bit of magic to make their prices fit our budget a bit better. It’s little things like that that make us feel like we’re getting the best service around. We really hit the jackpot on this one! Bachmann really is a hidden gem, and we’re so excited to see the images these two will produce of our big day!
So, now that I’ve gushed long enough, I’ll post a few more pictures, just for good measure.
What do you think? Did we make the right choice? Was it love at first sight with your photographer?