On Finding a Wedding Photographer

Originally we were going to encourage friends and family to use their cameras and iPhones to capture important moments at our wedding, but I quickly vetoed that idea. (Did I mention Sebastien refers to me as The Government?) It’s just that when friends snap photos of me they always manage to catch me mid-yawn or blinking, which just makes me look drunk. And whenever I try to look natural in a photo to avoid accidentally blinking, I end up opening my eyes way too big or smiling like a clown.

Exhibit A

Exhibit B

I showed these photos to Sebastien as evidence and he agreed that a licensed photographer was the way to go. A professional would certainly know how to capture the beauty of every person and limit the amount of imperfections frozen forever in an image:

“I just have to look up so they don’t see my double chin,” Sebastien said.

“I just have to look down so my nose doesn’t look too big,” I said.

So the search for a wedding photographer began. But just as soon as I started looking on a handful of websites, our plan came to a screeching halt.

Every photography website we looked at was charging an astonishing amount of money. Wedding packages for $2400, $3000, $5000 — What are they some kind of delicate genius with precious time that can’t be wasted on a budget-minded couple? Are their fingers made of gold? I don’t see any of their work in the Guggenheim so why are they charging so much money?

And if the price seemed reasonable for a four-hour wedding, the company tacked on a ton of hidden fees: extra roll of film fee, color photo fee, photo album fee, personal organic air for the photographer to breath fee…I mean come on.

We’re just looking for a basic wedding photography package. You can leave all of the bells and whistles out. But some photographers think it is important to capture all of the minutiae of a wedding day.

Ringland Photography – guaranteed to capture a moment of you pooping on your special day

It’s so frustrating.

About JadedBride

Amy Kraft is a print and radio journalist based in New York. Her work has appeared in publications including Scientific American, Discover, Popular Science, The Week, Psychology Today, and Distillations, a podcast out of the Chemical Heritage Foundation. She is currently working on a book of humor essays. View all posts by JadedBride

2 responses to “On Finding a Wedding Photographer

  • Andrew Zadarnowski (@AZadarski)

    If you haven’t yet, you will very shortly notice that as soon as you add the term “wedding” in front of anything the price skyrockets. Serious. Try it. How much does a ‘cake’ cost? Now how much does a ‘wedding cake’ cost? See what I mean?

    A photographer will always run you a ton of cash, but there are ways of getting around it.

    a- Negotiate! Offer to pay in cash, which at the very least would eliminate paying tax. You might also get a substantial discount from his base price as photographers are not above getting paid under the table to cheat the tax system.

    b- Find a friend who has a photography hobby. His pay would be a lot more reasonable.

    c- Know what style of photos you want taken. A photographer who just snaps journal style photos will be a lot cheaper than someone who promises ‘couture’ and ‘fashion’ inspired photos. But the difference in quality will also show.

    Wedding pictures are something that you will look at all the time, so in the end you don’t want to totally cheap out on that part of it. It’s a delicate balance.

    Now how about a videographer? …

    • Mrs. Frankenscience

      Great tips, Andy. A friend offered, but I wanted her to have fun at my wedding instead of working, so she is putting me in touch with some of her friends. Paying in cash is good too…I wonder if I can hire an illegal immigrant who knows how to point and shoot.
      No videographer for us. We’re more about photos and memories in our head. Of course, we tend to remember things differently so I guess a video could be used to win a bet about something that did or did not happen at the wedding.

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