Photo by Andrés Salas on Unsplash
Do Wedding Photography Costs Have You Frustrated?
Have you hit that proverbial wall yet? The one where you realize you may just have to take out a loan to cover your wedding costs? Wedding photographer costs can eat up your budget fast. All brides want those perfect Pinterst images but how far you are willing to go in debt to get them? Weddings certainly can drain the bank account faster than almost anything else. Because of that, you may find yourself looking for ways to save money.
Photo by Stacey Rozells on Unsplash
Enter your friend with a DSLR camera
They have a good camera and they have taken some adorable pictures of their kids, so they surely can photograph your wedding, right? It certainly seems like a good idea to save some money, and your friend is likely more than willing to give it a shot for no cost to you. We’ll how lucky are you…to tell you the truth not very if you choose this route. We understand wedding photographer costs can be high but don’t make the mistake of not hiring a professional.
Ask yourself these questions before you decide:
- Will my friendship be at risk if I am disappointed in my photos?
- Do I really want to put my once in a lifetime wedding photos at risk to someone who has never shot a wedding and does not know what to expect?
- Will my friend know how to properly post process my images so that they look finished and professional enough to print or make a wedding album with?
- If my images come out all dark and blurry or overexposed, what will my reaction be? Will I be OK with this?
- If there is one area of my budget I could cut back on in order to pay a professional, what would that be?
- Three years from now, what will have more value to me: the item in my budget I can cut back on, or quality wedding images that I would be proud to share with my family and friends for years to come.
You are not alone. Most couples totally underestimate wedding photographer costs and are often surprised at the rates. In their eyes, all this photographer has to do is show up with his equipment and casually work a few hours taking pictures, right? The fact is that wedding photography is a very stressful and a huge responsibility. Many professional photographers avoid wedding photography altogether, because they don’t want the responsibility or the post processing work that comes with it. It is not for the faint of heart, that if for sure.
Do yourself a favor and think hard about this: do you really want someone “giving it a try” on your one wedding day, the day that will never be repeated? You certainly can’t ask your whole wedding party and all the guests to dress up again and recreate the day just because your pictures didn’t turn out good the first time.
Don’t Let Bad Wedding Photography Happen to You.
With all of that said, you may be thinking that you can choose the lowest cost pro around, but you can get some fairly bad photography this way too. That doesn’t mean all low cost professionals offer poor work – in fact, you could pay thousands of dollars for bad photos from anyone.
The absolute most important thing you must do when you hire anyone is:
- Ask to see their work. Look for samples very similar in lighting to your own venue and make sure the pro knows how to work in any light.
- Talk about style and angles. A real professional will be able to do almost anything you would like for your wedding photography.
- Can they provide recommendations?
- How many photos will they edit, if any. If they shoot and burn, you may need to hire someone to edit the images.
Can You Get Good Photography for Free?
Now, let’s get back to your friend. You could ask them to take pictures and they may turn out decently, but then again, they may not. Once the day is over, you will never be able to get it back and if you end up with thousands of blurry, dark, or poor images, you just won’t have anything to remember your day. Before you let an amateur take your pictures, here are a few things to do:
- Ask them if they have ever photographed under stress before. A wedding day is not easy on the photographer, who is trying to capture every special moment. An amateur may handle it well, or they could end up huddled in the bathroom, hyperventilating.
- Make sure they have a low light lens if you are getting married by candlelight. Nighttime shots are hard for anyone and will be especially difficult for amateurs. You don’t have to know all about lenses. Just ask if they have one that will go below f/2.8.
- Take them to the venue and give them a chance to practice. They need more time to get the right camera settings, and if they can practice without the stress of the wedding day, it will be easier on them.
Bad wedding photography does happen, and you certainly don’t want it to happen on your special day. You have to make smart decisions, even when you are working on a budget and don’t sacrifice the wrong thing or you will end up regretting it. Do your homework and ask lots of questions and look over their previous work and you will be happy you did.