There…see how easy it is to say or write!? After all, it really does seem that every wedding photographer on social media these days is an “award winning” one. Oh my and double gosh, what a talented buch we all are! Except…
…well except some of it just a load of old tosh. Put up by wedding photographers in the hope it’ll impress you no end and and you’ll rush to book them for your wedding. I mean, it sounds good doesn’t it? But who’s validating these claims? No one really. It’s just something that falls to you as a wedding couple to check out…if you can. It’s easy to be come confused and fooled by all the award claims out there.
So I thought it’d be useful to give you a 5 handy pointers on “award winning photographers” so you are a bit better informed when it comes to booking a wedding photographer…award winning or not.
1. What is a genuine wedding photography award?
Well, let’s start by setting out what to expect of a wedding photography award. First off, make sure it’s for the photography itself (we’ll come on to this more later.) It should consider the quality of the image and the technical ability behind capturing it. Ideally it should also be awarded by photography experts with credentials…photographers who know what they’re talking about. It’s really as simple as that. However…
2. Have they “paid” for the award.
Yes, it’s dead easy to buy so called wedding photography awards these days. Sign up to a wedding award website, pay your fee and soon enough you’ll get some kind of “award” from them. There’s a lot of these so called awards available via Instagram. It’s a money making venture and very little to do with the actual quality and skill of the photographer. So check out the website or Instagram feed of the award issuer. Does it look like a bona fide and respected award? Or are they being hand out like, well, confetti?
3. Is it for just being featured on a wedding blog?
This is a common one – have some photos featured on a wedding blog and you get a nice little logo to put on your website. But despite the fact it’s not actually an “award” as such, some wedding photographers will claim it as such. Yes, it can be quite worthy and a good sign that the photographer’s work has been featured but blogs are content hungry so need to be posting work constantly. They are largely edited by people with little photography knowledge and whilst a photo is worthy of publication it’s not an “award”.
4. Is it a photography award?
Believe me, I’ve seen stories about a wedding photographer who claimed to be award winning…the award was for swimming! After all, he never said it was award winning photography! Yes, this is likely extreme and rare, but it shows you why you do need to ask. Another example that fits into this are wedding photographers who win awards for business service, branding or other corporate matters. Yes, it’s all commendable but its not about the actual quality of their photography. It’s still misleading and questionable.
5. Is it a respected award?
Anyone can set up awards. There’s hundreds out there. From obscure blogs right up to big industry ones who run them. So dig deep, research and look up the award. Whoses behind the award? Is it a professional body or just a blog read by 10 people? Who were the judges? What were their credentials? Does it impress you?
Of course, being an award winning wedding photographer isn’t the be all and end all. There’s lots of very talented and exceptional wedding photographers out there who have never won an award, or even ever entered one. But having won genuine and respected awards is another criteria you can apply n trying to find the right wedding photographer out there. The key is to always ask, challenge and research…don’t just automatically believe or trust what someone has written on their website, blog or social media.
Oh, and me? Well, yes, I have won wedding photography awards from the respected and prestigious Wedding Photojournalist Association and the Artistic Guild of the the Wedding Photojournalist Association. Professional bodies comprised of some of the most talented wedding photographers in the world. I’m very proud of that fact, but it’s just an indication of my wedding photography. So if you would like to discuss your wedding plans with me, just send me details via my contact page or give me a call on 07920 422144. I’ll be delighted and thrilled yo hear from you.