12 Tips to finding the Perfect Elopement Photographer Cornwall

November 6, 2020

Congratulations! We are excited you’ve decided to elope and are now searching for your perfect Elopement Photographer Cornwall! So, how do you choose a Elopement Photographer Cornwall to suit your Elopement? You have found your elopement venue (see our Elopement Guide here) and now how do you choose your Elopement Photographer out of thousands of great photographers? The one thing left when your wedding is over is your images. Finding the right Elopement Photographer will be one of the most important decisions you will have to make when planning your wedding. Elopement Photographer Cornwall

A bride and groom walk hand in hand through the sand dunes at Sennen Cove during their small wedding in Cornwall

Your beautiful images will be one of the only things to share with family and friends who can’t attend your wedding. They will also be a visual reminder of your day, something you can look at for many years to come. Depending on your budget you may need to make sacrifices with certain items or services. Investing in high quality photography & videography will be the most important decision you will make. This is why your Photographer is usually the first supplier booked after choosing your venue.

1. Found your Photography Style?

There is a style of photography out there for everyone. Traditional, alternative, editorial, fine-art, contemporary, reportage etc. Look through different photographers portfolios. See who has a style you like. Look for timeless images, avoid trends that will look outdated in a few years. Your Elopement photos are treasures meant to last a lifetime and handed down through the generations. You will enjoy looking through your pictures and albums for many years to come.

A bride and groom hug each other tightly on the beach during their intimate wedding in Cornwall


2. What Is Your Budget?

Set yourself a budget and find a photographer that can work within it. Be prepared to spend more if you find a Photographer that you’re really connecting with. Choose quality over quantity. If you need to, it may be better to sacrifice the length of your coverage. Instead of having 8 hours of coverage with a photographer you may not particularly like, opt for your favourite photographer but only have 3-4 hours coverage. A 4-hour package is usually more than enough coverage for an Elopement.

3. Experience?

Find an experienced Elopement Photographer. Lots of photographers advertise that they are Elopement Photographers but may never have shot an actual elopement. Ask to see their full Elopement galleries. It is important to check if it was a real wedding and not just a styled shoot. A styled shoot pretending to be an elopement is very different. Ideally your Elopement Photographer should have shot at least 15 elopements. Elopement photography is a unique skill. It is honed over many hours of practical experience. As the day is so intimate you will be glad you chose a Photographer that is discreet, experienced and fun too!

4. The Person behind the Camera – Personality?

Make sure you like your photographer’s personality. A photographer may have a good portfolio, but if you don’t feel good about sharing the most important day of your life with this person, they are not a good fit for you. In order to feel comfortable in front of the camera, you’ll need to trust your photographer. You’ll be going through a lot of emotions that day — nervousness, joy, laughter and even some tears, and they’ll be shadowing you. A good photographer will calm you down, help you relax, make it fun and ultimately give you a wonderful experience when capturing your special day.

A couple walk hand in hand across a big dramatic beach in Cornwall as the brides dress drags behind in the wet sand

5. Read Reviews

Reading though their online reviews on Google and social media is a great way to see what other couples experience has been like.

6. Familiar with the location?

Is your photographer familiar with the location? Good photographers can find great locations spontaneously but having someone who is familiar with the local area really helps. They will know where to get the best images for your day as they will have insider knowledge into quieter beaches, where the best backdrops are hidden and locations that can be accessed by certain tides or cliff paths. We are explorers, always on the hunt for the best places for you!

7. Equipment?

Shooting an elopement is a very intimate experience and having cameras clicking away can be very distracting. Lots of modern cameras are completely silent. Check if your photographer is using silent equipment so you know that the camera won’t be making any noise during the key moments such as the vows and the ring exchange.

8. Are They Discreet?

Your photographer should be a non-invasive, friendly guide, who knows how to back off without losing those precious moments, and how to discreetly capture raw emotion. They should be strong enough to gently nudge you into a different angle for better light or composition. I also believe photographers should be professional on your day, treat your guests or witnesses with respect and gently lead and guide you when appropriate.

9. Book your elopement photographer early.

Good photographers and videographers book 1-2 years in advance so it is best to book early to avoid disappointment. Some couples choose to contact their favourite photographer first to check their availability and then once they know all their favourite suppliers are available they go ahead and book their ceremony venue or pick their wild location from their Photographers recommendations, local knowledge and experience.

A bride and groom get the best pictures on their elopement in Cornwall

10. Price

The price of your photographer depends on how long they have been shooting wedding Elopements, their experience, what equipment they will be using, how many hours you want and lastly and most importantly, their reputation in the Industry. Fortunately we have many years of experience shooting Elopements all over the world, in all types of weather and many varied and wonderful locations so you will be in very good hands with us!


11. Contract

Make sure you sign a contract and pay a booking fee to secure your date. Most photographers ask for 30-50% of the fee to secure the date along with a signed contract protecting both parties. Make sure it is clear to what package you have agreed to and what is included. How long you can expect to wait to receive your images is also important. Most weddings can take 2-4 weeks to be edited. Be careful of photographers that offer a very quick 1-2 day edit turnaround as that means your images may be rushed and not edited to great care. Alternatively they may not have any other work in, so this is worth checking out why.

12 . Facetime

Have a quick call or FaceTime the week before the wedding.This is a great way to connect with your photographer again before the big day, ask any final questions and get to know each other a little better.Minimalist Tidal Pool Elopement with couple kissing on their cornwall Elopement


Things to avoid when choosing a elopement photographer cornwall:

Friend or Foe?

Never ask a family friend to take your elopement pictures. Even if he or she is a professional photographer, you’ll be much better off with an outsider, who won’t be emotionally involved and may not even see it as work.

Freebie v Free-dont!

Avoid the photographer who offers to shoot for free in exchange for travel expenses. These are not seasoned professionals, but novices trying to build a portfolio. They’ll shoot the images they need for their portfolio, rather than the priceless memories you need. Professional Photographers may offer you a freebie eg, an upgrade of your album choice or extra images but this is different to shooting for free and is at the discretion of your photographer. 

A bride and groom laughing together next to a big tree at Pentille Castle -elopement photographer

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