We recommend looking through your bridal magazines to find different styles of photography that appeal to you. Rip out these pictures and put them in a folder so that you are armed with your vision when you go shopping around for a photographer. Definitely try to get recommendations from friends and brides in your area. Your wedding is just one day, but your pictures and video will last a lifetime.
Once you’ve picked your wedding date hire your photographer and videographer. Popular ones are sometimes booked up to a year in advance and to be honest, these are the good ones. Having a good photographer is worth the investment (your time shopping around, and the money you will spend). Photographers can cost anywhere from $1,500 - $5,000 and will usually have several different packages (price points) that you can choose from.
To hire a Videographer or not
If it fits in your budget we would definitely recommend hiring a videographer. The wedding video really captures everything from your wedding day (like the vows, the loving speeches (and roasts) and is something you will have forever, and something you can share with your family and children some day!
There are a couple of different styles of wedding videography including a documentary-style video of your wedding story - from engagement to honeymoon and a "How We Met" montage - pulling together old photographs and interviews with the engaged couple and family and friends., and of course everything in between.
Once you have some referrals meet with each one in person until you find one you are comfortable with whose style fits yours. Ask to see his or her portfolio - If their portfolio reflects your desired style then find out more information (the packages they offer, the number of pictures they will take, the type of cameras they are using, the format you will receive the pictures in, the cost, the number of hours they will cover, the number of pictures included in the price – if any, etc.). Make sure the photographer has experience shooting the style you're after.
We would strongly recommend going with a wedding package that provides you with hard copy pictures for your wedding album, and the parents’ album as well. Some brides try to save money here by taking care of the printing themselves and it takes them longer to do it (and some never get around to it) and is often more costly (since photographers get better rates at the printers).