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Life has many memorable events birthdays, weddings, work success and other joyous occasions with family and friends which we love to cherish long after the event has happened. Although the memory stays with us, every now and then we like to recollect and the experience. A picture on the photo frame, an album on our shelf or images on our computers are all representative of that memory captured which allows us reminisce that memorable event.

Dubai is bustling city with a lot of diverse cultures, social events and active on public and private events. There are a lot of photographers who are capable of good photography in Dubai and help you capture those memorable moments. But how do you choose the right one?

Below are some simple tips which you should consider before hiring a photographer for your next event:

Reference & Reviews: Before you hire a photographer do your homework by checking their reviews and references. Ask them to provide references of recent clients who they did work for and find out about their work quality. If possible visit their website and check for any feedback written.

Experience: It is always smart to choose en experienced photographer depending on the importance of the event you are hosting. Check how long they have been operating and how many years they have as experience. Whilst many experienced photographers may have apprentices and trainees who will be assisting them, but as long as the main photographer is experienced, you should be fairly comfortable.

Works Portfolio: Different photographers are experts in different areas. Some are better at weddings, some at parties, others at fashion photography and so forth. Not every photographer can specialise in every area, so be sure to ask for a portfolio in hard copy and review it in detail. Also visit their website and review their online gallery and see if their works are appropriate and impressive for the event you have in mind.

Photographer’s Style: Once you review the photographer’s portfolio you should be able to get an idea of his or her style. Some of them are highly organised, formal and operate in a planned and structured manner to get the best results. Others are more lenient and free-flowing and usually go with the flow and still get the best results. You should hire someone whose personality you are most comfortable with.

Use of Technology: If your event is being held at a location which requires additional focus on equipment and photography technology, please let the photographer know of your requirement. For example is your event outdoors near a beach or sea-front? Or is it in the middle of the afternoon outdoors in a park? Or in your apartment with very little lighting. Whatever the location and circumstances provide all details so the photographer can use the appropriate technology and for comfort levels, feel free to understand what he is using and how it will assist the situation.

Scope of Work: You need to provide a complete list and scope of your event and requirements so that on event day there are no surprises. For example if you wish for some people to get extra coverage, or if you have a list of “must-have shots” or if you need certain shots taken at certain areas at certain times – let them know. Provide specific instructions and requests if you have any.

Ask Questions: You need to ask plenty of questions so there are no “grey areas”:
– Is this their main profession or is this a side job to get extra money?
– Will they be the primary photographer covering the event or will they have assistants?
– How many similar events have they covered in the last 12 months?
– If their primary camera’s fail do they have spare or backup equipment?
– Do they have special requests to make sure the event photography is a success?

Contract: Before finalizing a photographer for your event, make sure you have a contract written. Ensure you include the entire scope of works, timelines of event, locations, photos and print deliverables, any electronic format requirements, travel and food allowance and pricing. Once you have a contract drawn up – it will protect both parties from any surprises and lack of responsibility.

Pricing: It is always a wise idea to discuss pricing before the vent day. Many photographers work on a fixed budget but can have variables depending on time and location. Others have various packages available which might be what you are looking for. Whatever you decide make sure you agree on a pricing and get it written in the contract. Some photographers require a certain deposit to be paid to book them.

Ease of Contact: Before event day, it is always handy to ask the photographer to visit the location and prepare a checklist of anything he requires. Additionally he should be able to provide some reliable contact numbers should you wish to reach him or her as required. It also might be a good idea to visit their studio if possible so you know where they are located.

Finally for some great photography in Dubai don’t just speak to one photographer, make sure you speak to a few and you choose the one perfect for your event.

Good Luck for your event and happy snapping!



Mel is a successful Interior Design Director from Melbourne, Australia, working in Dubai. She has over 15 years of experience in the design industry working for successful design practices in the Asia Pacific market places. Her other major interests include photography, travelling and loves to try out new cuisines.

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