[Edit - a week later - was this any help at all Joe?
You won't get an unbiased view from me as I am a freelance developer! However, perhaps the most important thing to find out is how to maintain the content after the initial design and handover. You don't want to be stuck with a site that you have to pay someone to update.
Individuals can give you a more personal service as long as you pick a good one - there are still some terrible designers out there who did a week's course and think they know it all - I've been doing it for many years and know just how much more I need to learn to be better . Bigger companies offer more continuity over the long term, but will often charge you a lot more for the same.
You can build a pretty decent web site yourself using a blogging system like Wordpress - I am just doing that for a local arts organisation so they can manage the content themselves. Wordpress.com provides a hosting service so you don't need to worry about keeping the software up to date, which can be a bit daunting if you aren't a geek - the basic service is free but you can pay for extras like domain pointing, designing your own templates, no ads etc. Or there are lots of subscription-based services, many aimed specifically at photographers. I have no personal experience of any of them but others here probably have.
I've got some info on my site, which may be a bit too simplistic if you are already on the road to having a site http://lois.co.uk/web-design/getting-started.asp
Good luck anyway.