Choosing a Photographer

Have you ever hired a professional photographer? How did you choose the photographer?

When you start thinking about hiring a photographer it probably seems like a daunting problem. There are a lot of ways to find photographers today between doing a Google search, Craigslist, or referral services like Bark. You might be surprised by just how many “photographers” there are in your area. You might also be surprised by the price range

So how do you choose?

As a photographer I have only ever hired two photographers but here is what I looked for:

  1. Their portfolio of work – Look through their portfolio. Do you like their images? This seems rather obvious but you need to see more than a handful of images to really know how good the photographer is. You also want to see images that align with the type of work you are hoping that the photographer is going to shoot for you.
  2. Personality – When you have chosen a few photographers who have work that you like communicate with them. Do you like how they communicate? Are they going to make you comfortable when they are photographing you? Feeling comfortable with your photographer is super important to get the most out of portrait sessions. If you aren’t comfortable it will show in your images unless you happen to also be an excellent actor.
  3. Price – Of course price is important. Once you have found a photographer who makes images you like and that you feel comfortable with the question is are they in your price range. I think the truth is that unless you have hired a photographer before you probably don’t really know how much it should cost. I’d like to write something short and insightful about know what the right price is but this is probably a subject for another post.

In the end it boils down to finding a photographer who’s work you like, that you feel comfortable with, and that you can afford. Simple right?

One last thing… please check to make sure your photographer of choice is licensed and insured. Requirements for licensing vary from jurisdiction to jurisdiction but if the photographer needs one and doesn’t have it that is a bad sign. Photographers charging customers for sessions should definitely have liability insurance. If you have any questions at all you should ask the photographer about their license and insurance coverage.

— Craig

Do you need a portrait or headshot? Please visit my web site or email me at

Published by

Craig Vitter

Freelance photographer

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