So that’s it. The big day is over, married life lays ahead. Those months (and possibly years) of planning your wedding have come to fruition and culminated in a fantastic day that you’ll most certainly want to remember forever.
The wedding photos, and more specifically, your wedding albums will be the medium through which you, your kids and grandkids re-live the day for many years to come. So making sure you get the album right – and getting the right album – is absolutely essential.
Essentially, there are two ways to deal with your album: you can leave it to your photographer, or alternatively you can get the (high quality) photos and organise it yourself. There are potential pros and cons of both avenues, but depending on your point of view you might find that one approach outweighs the other. To help you decide here’s a summary of each avenue, with the main benefits:
Your Photographer Takes Care Of The Album(s)
Photographers generally retain the rights to the photos that they take, and many won’t automatically give you high resolution copies. They will often prefer to organise the albums on your behalf, and when that’s the case they’ll normally offer a package to include the photography plus one or more albums. If you do want the high quality photos you may have to pay extra for them, or strike some sort of deal, as you’ll need high the resolution images to make a good quality album.
- Once you’ve chosen your favourite photos then the photographer deals with everything – very little extra time, hassle or work for you
- You should be able to see sample albums, and possibly a wider choice / higher quality than you can find on your own, as many good album companies will only deal with professional photographers
- The photographer probably has an established relationship with album suppliers, so they may get trade prices, and they can deal with any issues that arise
- The photographer can use their experience and expertise to ensure everything is correct before printing, and that the photos are looking their best (including ‘post production’ work)
- Extra support if something goes wrong
Getting The Album(s) Done Yourself
As mentioned above, you’ll need the high quality images from the photographer. It’s unlikely that a photographer would flatly refuse to give them to you, but it’s always best to approach the subject before you’ve signed on the dotted line – then you know where you stand, and if you’re able to get a copy of the high res images then you’re free to do what you want with them.
- The ability to shop around further to get exactly the album that you want
- No ‘loaded’ pricing by the photographer, so the equivalent albums might be cheaper
- You’ll probably have more control over the process as you will be dealing directly with the album company
- A good album company should calibrate the photos for colour and brightness to ensure optimal print quality, which may offset the need for post-production work (and you may be able to persuade your photographer to do any post production if need be)
- You’re working to your own timescales, and as there’s no ‘middle man’ things can often get done more quickly
- There may be special offers that you can take advantage of, referral schemes etc
Some album companies like Photo Productions supply photographers, but have also opened up their service to the wider public. They provide an in-house design service, along with professional quality photobooks. So if you prefer to get the albums done yourself then at least you’re no longer stuck with those low-rent, design-it-yourself photobooks that seem to be two-a-penny these days.
Best of luck!