The Tofino Guide to Choosing a Wedding Photographer

Unless you’ve been married before, choosing a wedding photographer can seem like a daunting process. We reached out to Tofino born-and-raised wedding photographer Nora Morrison to get the inside scoop on how to make the job easier. After all, you’ve got more important things to think about, like what venue you want, or whether to have an open bar (hint, the answer is yes). When you’re done, visit The Tofino Guide to Weddings. We’ll help you dial in the best west coast wedding ever.

Who is Interviewing Whom?
Picking a photographer is like finding a new dating partner. Just because you want a photographer doesn’t mean they necessarily want you. Hammering photographers with intense interview-style questions might not give a great first impression. You want to show them that they want to work with you too. They’re going to be around you all day (if not longer). By the end, you should be great friends. A good photographer is someone who wants to be there for you, and that person will make the best photos possible. 

What is Style?
Look at their portfolios, know that what you’ll get back is probably similar to what they are showcasing publicly. It is far too common that photographers get asked to edit in a certain style, and that is not the way it works. Choose a photographer who you want as they are, Don’t try and change me! FYI – Black & White photos work sometimes, just go with it.

Money Matters
Everyone knows someone who managed to get a wedding photographer to work for a few hundred dollars. Trust me, you don’t want that photographers. You get what you pay for and, to ensure you love these images forever, don’t be frugal. on the flip side, don’t be a sucker for the high priced showy salesperson either. Just because a photographer charges a lot doesn’t mean they will the best photographer for your needs. The ideal photographer has little to do with budget. It is important to know your budget, and stick to it, but price should not be the only selling point. Don’t shop around for the best deal, and don’t compare rates between photographers. If you like their work creatively, pursue them. Take time to really look into portfolios and talk over what you want, then reach out to the ones that interest the most.
The ideal photographer has little to do with budget. It is important to know your budget, and stick to it, but price should not be the only selling point.


Shop Local
There are many epic photographers in B.C., but Tofino is a special place full of special people. The photographers here know where the light is good at every minute of every day, and they’re going to make sure to get you where you need throughout the day. Plus, save the travel fees and instead buy a float plane trip or helicopter ride and bring your photographer along with you. Hint, hint.
Communicate, Damnit!
Information is key, communication is powerful. Tell the photographer everything they need to know. They can’t read your mind. Don’t make them guess. If you have expectations for your wedding photos, make sure they are clear. There is nothing worse than getting wedding photos back and seeing 20 photos of your annoying extraverted cousin, and completely missing the images of your quieter aunt who you’re obsessed with. On that note, don’t forget to tell them you intend to feed them, and give breaks when needed. Seriously, “hanger” is real. People work their hardest when they are fed, rested and know what you want from them. Make sure you have a seat for them during the sometimes long and drawn out speeches (Sit down, uncle John!).


Look Before You Leap
Please don’t slide into my DMs. Photographers have websites and emails for a reason. Instagram is not the place for negotiating contracts or sending rate sheets. 
Reverse Roles
Send the photographer a photo of the two of you together (no nudes, please ;). It helps them prepare for how to capture your best sides.
Trust the Process
Weddings are emotional, so work with your photographer beforehand to outline what you want, and then give a little room for the professional to be a professional. If you hire a qualified photographer, they will know exactly how to get it done. Let them run with it and trust them. More than anything, try and have fun.
Nora Morrison is a Tofino-based wedding photographer. View her work here