The Secret Lives of Wedding Photographers

As mentioned in a previous post, it is quite difficult to find a reasonably priced wedding photographer. So you can imagine my suspicion when I came across one man who advertised wedding photography for $550. His portfolio looked legit, but then I started thinking. What if he just pulled those photos from another site and called them his own? What if he’s some Starbucks barista trying to make some extra cash? Perhaps he’s a serial killer that gets a thrill out of killing fiscally responsible brides to be. Is he even a real human? I’ll admit that my years of X Files watching did get in the way of reason just a bit, but still, something wasn’t right.

I emailed him to inquire why he was so much cheaper than other photographers and to ask for references. Here is the response:

Hi Amy,

I am glad you like my photos. Thanks for getting back to me. When I advertise on Craigslist I lower my price a bit because I know people are on a budget and I LOVE shooting weddings.I have to say that $550 is actually to low. The transportation itself runs me $125. I am afraid I cannot honor my price of $550 that I quoted you. If you are interested in me photographing you reception please counter me with a price.
Thanks Amy,
XXX XXXX (name omitted)

So basically he was lying when he said he could photograph my wedding for $550. And what did he think, that I would gladly offer him a higher price for his sleazy services? I’m not even sure this guy knows how to use a camera anymore. And, he used the wrong form of the word “to.” Disgraceful.

I’d like to know how other people have dealt with this issue. The truth is out there and so is a reasonably priced wedding photographer.

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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

3 responses to “The Secret Lives of Wedding Photographers

  • kristen

    I’m a wedding photographer. Not trying to sell my services, but it costs a lot of money to have a photography business. It’s not just buying a camera and boom your done and the rest is profit. There’s equipment, insurance, professional fees, keeping up with education, ever changing software, replacing equipment, having duplicate backup equipment in case your primary equipment fails, website fees, second shooters, a lawyer, accountant, book keeper, product samples, shooting, post production, album deaign, and did I mention paying ourselves? If they’re a legit photographer, their prices have been carefully calculated based on their cost of doing business. You’ll get what you pay for. Granted there are plenty people out there that have no idea what they’re doing, and plenty who over change and under charge. Just do your research.

  • Mrs. Frankenscience

    Thanks for the advice, Kristen. The more I research wedding photographers the more I learn about all that is involved in the work they do. And you’re right, there is a lot of work involved. I was already suspicious of the photographer I mentioned in the post and decided to blog about the experience after I inquired about his low fee and he revoked his own price quote.

  • kristen schueler

    Yea, that guy is ridiculous, there’s a lot of “photographers” that clearly don’t do business correctly. Hopefully you found a good one! If not I have a large referral group in the NY area with all kinds of budgets so let know. Good luck!

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