Before I met with the photographer, my husband and I discussed what we wanted in our wedding photographs. I was specific in what I wanted exactly. ...and thus did my research on the market price. I met with each photographer and interviewed them extensively on their experience.
I was specific in that I wanted my photographer to be a photojournalistic, and not even necessarily be a wedding photographer ...but the most important thing I needed to know was our chemistry- that is why I needed to meet with the photographer. In fact, my chosen photographer and I met at least 5 times before the wedding and exchanged emails a thousand times. We met at the venue, we met at a photo store, ... we met at my office, we met at the hotel, etc. He even came to the bridal shower. (granted not all the photographers will be as proactive but he did so since we had a mutual friend).
He was great and attentive. He went to the site several times to test out the lighting before the wedding.
Questions I asked him was about his experience in wedding photography. The first concern with our photographer was that he had never photographed a wedding. That did not matter so much for me because he was a photojournalist and he photographed film and I liked his style very much. I had already seen his work prior. Although wedding photography is VERY different from other types, I knew he would be able to handle it because of his constant dedication and attention.
Anyway, check out his portfolio. Make sure he includes hi-resolution digital images for you and see what types of packages he offers. Also make sure he has a second photographer/assistant.
We took photos at the hotel prior to the wedding. You might want photos of you and theentourage getting ready.
I had a picture of everything I had in mind for the wedding up front. I told the photographer the mood, the theme, and supplied him with every detail about my wedding (from colors to dress details, to invitations, etc)...then I had him give me some feedback of what he thought might or might not work. He'll suggest/add to your ideas and make sure everything goes as planned.
Time might be a factor also. Ask about time limits. Most are flexible but make sure you set some sort of time frame.
I guess I'm just rambling a bit huh. ...but here's a list:
-make sure you know what style he's good at and make sure it corresponds with what you guys want. Is it photojournalistic? creative? relaxed? posed? candid? traditional? -how many images does he typically shoot. will you be provided with the hi res digital images? does he shoot in color or black and white? what kind of equipment does he use? will you need to provide extra lighting for him? -get references, contact references; how experienced is he
Finally, see if you get along with him. Do you like him as a person? Do you get along with him? Do you like his work?
also, do you want to shoot an engagement shot too?
I'm probably missing something...but then again, you can always contact me.