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9 Best Event Photographers in Chicago

Why would I need an event photographer in Chicago?

If you’re planning an event in the Windy City, you need to find someone excellent with cameras. Event photographers in Chicago complete the ultimate list of essential events personnel and give you one thing less to worry about. They have the right equipment for the job and come with the proven hands-on experience you need.

But there are countless other reasons. First, only a professional photographer can capture the true feeling of the moment, snap it, and present it in a timeless photo. And that means that someone who knows what shots to look for, how to artistically capture them, and the right way to present each shot deserves a thumbs-up.

The need for proper storage of the photos also demands that you only work with a professional photographer. After the event is over, maybe you will need a couple of photos on your Insta and several others to store and reminiscence over the jolly good moments. Or you may need some to distribute with the mainstream media and announce the launch of your product. Whichever you intend, it means the shots need to be of the highest quality – perfectly crisp, flawless, and precise, and properly stored so you can access them.

But it doesn’t end there.

They possess technical photography skills. Nowadays, virtually anyone with a top-dollar smartphone or camera can be a self-proclaimed photographer. It’s true everywhere, including Chicago where professional event photographers aren’t hard to find.

But as they say, photography isn’t about the quality of equipment one owns, but the quality of shots taken. And unless you will feel OK with dull, lackluster images, you deserve a professional event photographer in Chicago.

Professionals have only one task–to take great photos. They aren’t there to have fun, socialize or take part in the event. And with their knowledge, expertise, and equipment, they are sure to do just the job you need!

See, though anyone can buy a good camera and take photos, photography is an art best left to the real gurus. And it gets even better to pick an expert from the Chi-town when it’s an event going down within the city.

With a local events photographer, it’s automatic that you will not have to hunt for anybody else to get the job done again. It doesn’t matter whether it’s a corporate events photographer, wedding photography professional, or someone whose expertise entails taking beautiful shots outdoors.

You will also have someone with all the equipment necessary to perfectly capture your event. An individual who will start when the occasion gets underway and continue to the last moment of the day. And thereafter process all those photos, picking the best ones out of hundreds or thousands, just for you.

Photography is more of a skill than the cameras used. Looking at the best event photographers in Chicago, this can’t be any clearer. In all their different shots, the clearest aspect is their ability to discover what to look for, the patience to wait for it, and the skill to vividly capture interesting and engaging moments.

Photo touch-ups and editing. They also stand out because of their photo editing prowess, which ideally includes softening or brightening the image or adding depth to it. Each of their camera’s white balance and color and lighting correction is a work of art. They are the only ones who can convert ordinary events into award-winning functions, by merely taking picturesque images.

But it isn’t only about editing and putting a final touch to the shots that you deserve an expert to take photos during your event. Professionalism in photography extends to the way a client expects the photos to be packaged and delivered.

That simply means you will not have your photos sent haphazardly. The images are edited well and packaged in a way that is consistent with your requirements. They basically package the entire list in a format that you can easily store in the Cloud or via a USB flash drive.

In Chicago and pretty much everywhere today, it is unheard of to plan an event without putting into consideration the input of an expert photographer. In many posh celebrations, event photographers aren’t exclusively confined to their booths alone.

They also have a huge role to play in making the actual party a success. And that entails their counsel in documenting invaluable moments with the right angle and tone and advising on the best postures before any shot.

They are the ones to dictate human emotions, expressions, mood, and atmosphere to be recorded. Basically, they hold the key to the human element of the photo – at that moment and later when the event is a memory.

Remember, literally, anyone can snap hundreds of Insta-worthy shots and do a stellar job. But the artistic part of it is best left to pros in event photography; those who can create beautiful pieces of art with a camera.

Event photographers are the best-placed for event publicity. Perhaps the greatest reason to have a renowned event photographer in Chicago today, especially if it’s a business event, is to complete the jigsaw puzzle. A pro most definitely knows all the channels to be followed to publicize a product launch or a major conference.

It gets even more important to pick someone with a strong relationship with the media if you need the images to accompany a mega announcement and create shockwaves that press releases alone can’t. A good events photographer will help you garner as much publicity as possible, and subsequently help push your brand image.

Of course, this could also include a social media influencer who is held in high regard by the social media faithful. By merely endorsing your event, perhaps even posting how it happened, to his/her countless social media followers, the positive public perception can tremendously bolster your brand.

It leaves you free to attend to other important duties. It is important to acknowledge the fact that you might not do a killer job taking photos. Unlike you, they will come with the right set of cameras, quality lenses, lighting equipment, event-themed props, and a custom-booth.

That will automatically give you the freedom to focus on the finer details of the function and coordinate it to ensure it happens without a glitch. Being free, as the MC, manager, or organizer, also allows you to have fun and indulge like everybody else.

Later, once the party is over and guests have left, the greatest feeling will be seeing yourself amidst the fun and excitement of it. You will have had lots of fun, made merry, and ensured the occasion was a success, and still appeared in the priceless photos.

How much do event photographers cost?

Before booking a photographer, cost will undoubtedly be one of your deciding factors. You will probably ask around, perhaps request quotes from different event photographers, or maybe just throw all caution to the wind and pick your favorite off Instagram.

Well, like you, photographers also struggle with pricing their services. They face hurdles balancing between not being too expensive and still getting a bang for their efforts.

Specialty event photographers in Chicago and probably elsewhere tend to be a bit more expensive. It’s the same case with brands with stellar reputations and admiration. However, this doesn’t mean they cost an arm and a leg!

According to thumbtack.com, hiring a photographer costs $235 on average. The most expensive can charge as much as $300 or even increase to $1,500 or more. The cheapest ones can accept as little as $85 and $200.

But pricing is never cast in stone. That’s why Fash.com averages photographers’ costs at between $94 to $262 per hour and $175 per hour across America. This difference in rates largely boils down to the diverse skill levels and the different types of events booked for. Extras such as travel time, editing fees, and urgency for the services also affect the booking costs.

To avoid getting ripped off, however, it is critical to classify event photographers according to their skills and experiences. At the lowest end of the spectrum are amateurs, beginners, and students because they typically don’t charge a lot. Hobbyists may also charge a reasonable figure.

Semi-pro event photographers and professionals, including those who are exclusive full-time photographers, can charge a ton. Freelance photographers can also be expensive, although not as high as the former.

Don’t fear negotiating a fair event photography rate. When you finally discuss prices with an event photographer in Chicago, remember to ask for a discount. Photography costs typically come as a package, although this should be well highlighted in the contract form.

One key factor to capture when negotiating includes the exact number of images you expect. Turnaround time is equally important, and the photographer must give a realistic date of delivery. You can ask them to slash the cost a bit, especially if you are only interested in getting raw (unedited) images.

How can I find good event photographers in Chicago?

It is a daunting expedition having to pick the best event photographer in Chicago from the thousands ruling the city. You could be tempted to head over to Google, perhaps seek recommendations from Facebook or use Instagram.

But in this era, every professional event photographer in Chicago must have created an online portfolio containing their best works. It’s almost a norm today and the portfolio is pretty much anything – their Insta, Facebook page, or even a website.

Going down this route, however, you must be extra-cautious. The first thing would be to review their samples from their past events and photoshoots. This basically helps tell about their personality and if they can be a good fit for your event.

Online reviews and local consumer review surveys also go a long way in helping pick the right candidate. Most photographers in Chicago can be found on Yelp, Google Reviews, and Thumbtack. You should, therefore, use them, especially when someone has an almost-unknown reputation on Facebook or has a bad name.

But there’s a catch!

Amongst professional event photographers in Chicago though, their greatest source of customers is “word of mouth.” This simply means, to get a good individual to hire, recommendations from friends, colleagues, and relatives can help a great deal.

But once you’ve narrowed down your list to a few names, don’t simply pick one. Book an appointment with each of them so that you can really tell whether their style and level of professionalism matches your expectations.

Some of the critical questions to ask in your interview would be their costs and whether their assortment of equipment is insured. Other questions to ask would be whether they do travel with backup equipment, how tight their schedule is, and the number of photographers covering your event.

Will the event photographer do photo touch-ups and editing?

This also is one of the targeted questions during the interview. You will have to ask whether photo touch-ups and editing are part of the final price quoted or it comes as an independent package.

It is worth noting that different photographers price this differently. Some heap it into the overall hourly price, while others charge for it differently.

It is at this stage that you will get to know each of them better. It will also help you choose your final event photographer in Chicago.

How do I know there won’t be technical issues?

This is the billion-dollar question about your worst worries and what the photographer would do in case worse comes to worst. The event photographer must come with backup lenses, cameras, batteries, etc. And you must ensure they bring them along, even if none of their previous tasks have ever gone awry.

While expressing your expectations, don’t forget to discuss with the photographer how you’d like the shots taken. That essentially includes sharing your thoughts and hearing their suggestions as well. After all, they’re the professional!

How will my event photographer in Chicago get details for my event?

This should be the last tip before you close the deal. And much as you will be dealing with professionals, it will be better if you give them details about the location of your event. Let the photographer know when the function is expected to start and whether they will be on set to capture all arrangements before kick-off.

The best way to let them know where it will be happening is to give clear directions. Location pin details off Google Maps are the clearest. However, be sure to follow up a day before the actual day by perhaps calling them.

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