Colorado Venues Experience – Does it Matter?
Does Prior Photography Experience at a Venue Help?
We get the question from time to time if we have shot somewhere before. When we have done a wedding there or will do one prior to their wedding couples are generally comforted and see that as a selling point on us as wedding photographers. Before addressing the above question I think there are two preliminary questions that need answer regarding the possibility and practicality of what one may desire for Colorado weddings.
Is it Possible to Shoot Everywhere?
Colorado is a unique destination for a wedding. If you are driving down the road and see an open mountain field, mountain peak, or random lake spot – that could be a wedding venue. At 104 thousand square miles of potential venue locations we do not believe it is possible. Every state has its own hot spot venues but Colorado seems to have greater diversity from the hotel, golf course, and church settings. It is a little like wanting a photographer because they shot on an exact spot of ocean front beach.
Is it Practical to Make it A ‘Nice to Have’?
It is practical to know if you are curious but quickly becomes impractical if you are searching for a photographer that not only is available, in your price range, that you like, but also has shot there before. We believe the first three can be challenging for couples unless they are looking 2 years out from the wedding. Think of it also from the perspective that the one who has the greatest variety of venues in the portfolio likely either has been shooting long enough to be overpriced and outdated or is just not available due to demand.
Consideration: No Two Weddings or Days at a Venue are 100% Alike.
Benefits to Prior Experience:
Let me preface this with we assume your potential photographer selection is a professional who understands lighting and knows how to follow Google Maps.
- Your photographer does not need to look up at the ceiling when using a flash indoors. Hopefully they will be bouncing any light off the ceiling and they might save a few seconds with prior knowledge of how bright to make the flash based on the ceiling height.
- Your photographer doesn’t need to use Google Maps to find the venue. If you are lucky you chose a venue that has a Starbucks on the way and your photographer can fuel up with some caffeine on the way there rather than focusing on google maps.
- Your photographer can show you how a wedding that will be very different than yours looked at the wedding venue.
Why It Doesn’t Make a Huge Difference:
- The photographer doesn’t normally get a say on the ceremony and reception setup. You either work with a coordinator or the venue to try to figure out where to put everyone and how to set things up. Occasionally, we have heard people thinking about how it looks for flow or with outdoor lighting but in reality our experience is never consulted prior to the day of the wedding.
- Lighting changes. This is constantly throughout the day and for every season. A summer wedding and a late fall wedding can bring significantly different lighting scenarios.
- Weather changes. It could snow in August or it could be 80 in November. The afternoon summer mountain thunderstorm is the only thing predictable in Colorado.
- The photographer knowing the venue staff or other vendors makes the evening more enjoyable for your photographer from a social perspective but doesn’t make your photography any better.