Yes, I’m a wedding photographer and I uttered the dirty words. After all you must know someone who knows their way around a camera or at least an iPhone. There’s all sorts of professional photographers out there that use iPhone’s, so why not? Do you have a friend or an Uncle that is an aspiring photographer?
Here’s what is so great about hiring your friend
1. Professional wedding photographers cost a lot, thousands actually. Best gig in town if you ask me. The photographer shows up, works for 6-8 hours, goes home to download the images and ta-daa. Invoice appears and a month later, a rung up Visa card. Not your friend though.
2. A friend will give you ALL of the digital files, no questions asked. Then you can print them anywhere.
3. And no wait time. You can see your photos right away!
That all sounds great, right? Alright, I’ll pull my tongue out of my cheek. Stick with me here to see the flip side of the coin.
Here’s a few other things to take into consideration
1. Bad lighting
2. Crooked horizons
3. That moment just after the perfect moment
4. Random body parts or half bodies in the frame
5. Increased blurriness as the night parties on
Every couple makes a decision of what areas of their wedding they want to focus their dollars on. In all my years, I’ve yet to see an unlimited budget, although I’m still waiting and hopeful! The most popular areas are typically photography, food, drink or entertainment. While it’s true photography isn’t the number one budget spend for every couple, it ranks high for most.
10 important points you get when working with professional wedding photographers
1. A skilled wedding photographer doesn’t hold a second job. This is all they do. Even when they aren’t shooting, they pack their gear around like it’s their first child.
2. They take your day really seriously knowing there’s no second chance at the staggering responsibility of creating the lifelong photographic memory of your day.
3. Other than being a snap happy party girl (or guy), there’s a real methodology and approach to capturing the journalistic candids in amongst the key grouping photos.
4. They are a haven of knowledge of the venue, environment and other vendors. A photographer sees everything with different eyes. They look at framing, lighting and backdrops.
5. Wedding photographers easily mesh with other vendors so the day and evening flows seamlessly because let’s face it, things go wrong and everyone needs to adjust. A tight and knowledgeable team handles these situations effortlessly and often without you even knowing.
6. A wedding photographer knows all the hidden gems in locations and has alternate plans for increment weather. We do, after all, live on the West Coast.
7. Their job is to make you shine. A good wedding photographer will take the time to get to know you from a neutral perspective. This is part of what allows them to capture the essence of you and all your beauty.
8. A wedding photographer has expertise in seeing things differently. To really capture ‘the moment’ they have been trained to anticipate the gorgeous key shot.
9. You do have to wait. Some photographers take weeks and weeks to show you their work but an average wait time is 6-8 weeks. And some as little as 1-2 weeks. That’s how we roll at Gadbois, we don’t believe in making you wait 🙂 However, post processing is a very important skill that can take a photo from great to wow. And it does take some time.
10. If you’ve hired the right wedding photographer, meaning one that resonates with you and you’ve done your due diligence in checking out references as well as digging deep into their work to search for style and consistency, then there is somewhat of a guarantee of what you’ll get.
Bottom line is to resist the urge to save until you’ve considered the decision from every angle. Professional wedding photographers aren’t cheap and there’s good reason for it. Listen to recommendations from venues and friends but without a doubt do your own research. If photography is an area you’ve chosen to focus your budget on, dig deep and get to know who you’re hiring. After all, they’ll be at your side through the most intimate moments of your day.
I like odd numbers and want an 11th point. Have I missed anything? Tell me in the comments below.