Yes, everything to do with weddings is expensive – including the wedding photographer. That’s generally because someone puts a huge amount of work and their time into each service provided. The hand-made wedding dress, the beautifully crafted wedding cake… these are all understandably expensive. So it grates quite a lot when someone comes along, asks me, as a professional wedding photographer, to do their wedding photography, and then quibbles over the price, which is frequently less than the cost of the cake (to my absolute horror), and usually a lot less than the price of the dress. There are some myths that should be kicked out before you begin…
Myth: “Of course it’s all easy nowadays, you don’t need a professional wedding photographer, you just get anyone to turn up with a digital camera, snap away, and you’ll be sure of getting a few good shots”. This is a myth that doesn’t stand up to close scrutiny, and is constantly proved wrong by the calls I get from people who have taken this route, and then want me to work some sort of professional wedding photographer’s magic on someone else’s amateur photos to make them worth having. Basically I can’t. The only thing that makes a photograph a good photograph is what happens at the moment it’s taken; once that moment has passed, it’s too late – the moment has gone forever.
Myth: “My brother/friend is coming – he can do the wedding photography”. If you’ve ever been put in this position as a keen amateur photographer, you’ll know the pressure it places on you. It’s enormous & relentless, and you won’t enjoy the wedding; you won’t be able to drink; and worst of all, the photographic skills that cause so many “oohs” and “aahs” when you show off your holiday snaps, will vapourise under all that pressure.
Trust a professional wedding photographer who can show a clear track record which consists of hundreds of good photos from wedding after wedding. Choose your photographer because you like him or her as a person; after all they’ll be interacting with your guests, and you don’t want anyone who’ll be abrasive, abrupt or rude. Above all choose your photographer because you love his/her photos; because long after the cake is all eaten by your guests, and your wedding dress is all eaten by moths, your wedding photographs will be the best way to remember the day, the people both living and passed on, and above all relive the emotions of your wedding day. A small price to pay? Yup.
Jon Silver is a wedding photographer in Brighton & Sussex, Kent & Surrey.