Relatives with Nice Cameras

An email to a professional photographer.

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  1. The old saying “you get what you pay for” springs to mind…

    • I would have to agree with you.

    • Maybe you didn’t read all of it; they have “Really Good Cameras” and that’s all you need right?
      Aunt Paulene said her 5D Mark 2 has a “green box” setting that makes all the pictures look professional.

    • This is just awful

      I just hope their relative has backup nice cameras or else they better prey that nothing goes wrong with their equipment. Good luck with that.

      • I recently agreed to shoot a wedding for a friend who was wedding coordinating for a neighbor. She said they didn’t have much money, so I agreed to shoot it for $500. If you knew my market, and skilz, that’s a ridiculous deal. I met with Bride-zilla (as she turned out to be). While I was showing her my work, she commented that she wasn’t as concerned with my portfolio (which she carelessly looked at), but that I had a nice camera (which I do). I thought this line of thinking was odd. After not hearing back for two weeks, I contacted my friend, and was actually releived that she decided to have a friend with “a good camera” take the pictures. I guess $500 for my 15 years photography experience was a tad high…

      • At least you don’t have to deal with bridezilla.


    • I was just thinking that myself.

  2. Is it just me or Is this “good luck with your career” just a slap in the face?

  3. Clarissa

    When will these idiots wake up and realize that it isn’t the CAMERA that takes the photos???

    • Sure it does. But it’s the photog that *makes* them.

    • Ugh … I get that often. “Wow, that’s a nice photo. You must have a really nice camera.” I just smile at them.

      • Katherine

        I saw something somewhere where a photog goes to a dinner party where the hostess says your photos are beautiful you must have a really good camera and the photog says nothing and sits and enjoys the party and then comes dinner and at the end of dinner say wow that was a great dinner you must have a really good oven.

      • Gourmetguy

        I have a really good oven

      • Aw, you’re baby is cute. You must have a really good womb.

      • Awesome! lol

      • We have a good oven, it beats Gordon Ramsay’s food.

        Stupid people who come up with these ideas, most of the time you know what you are dealing with if they would like to have a cheapy, stay away from those people because they are going to be trouble too in the end./

    • Haha, a guy I know was talking to some friends and said that my camera takes awesome pics. I thought I could hide the fact that I just set it on a tripod in the random locations and it just shoots pics at will. Dangit, the secret is out. Just spend enough money on a rig, and it does all the work!

  4. Meanwhile

    I hope they also chose a family member who bought a really good piano for accompaniment, a family member with a really good stove to do the catering, a family member with a really good sewing machine to make the dress, a family band with really good instruments for the reception, a family member with a really good printer and desktop publishing program to do the invitations, a family member with….

  5. i think i got that same email lol!

  6. Leroy Smith

    I just witnessed this myself, had a family member get married. I turned down the shots but told them to hire nobody short of a professional.

    The ‘photographer’ was someone on the other side of the family. I cringed the whole ceremony. Moms lighting the candles, live music performance, vows, rings – the ‘photographer’ shot none of this. He did however shoot the Bride and Groom coming down the aisle, from as low on the floor as he could crouch.

    Making the bride look 30lbs heavier by shooting from the floor, that’ll get you return business.

  7. I’ve heard people say that with a smug tone of naaana-boo-boo… I mean seriously, “…good luck with your career”???… I can just feel the smarmy-ness ooze from their thinly veiled attempt at being cynical.

    They text now, thinking how they we’re “too smart” to be tricked into an expensive photographer… Then, when they see what the got for photos… not so smug. I say good luck to you on their honeymoon… the one where they told the resort that they were just going to visit some friends with a nice spare bedroom

  8. … and I miss not being able to “like” other posts… and not being able to fix typos…

  9. That is just so wrong on so many levels…. it’s not the camera that makes the great photograph… grr.
    I would be one upset photographer.

  10. [IMG][/IMG]

  11. Fear Uncertainty Doubt

    It’s pure snobbery that you are reading “Good luck with your career” as some sort of backhanded remark. In context, “Thank you for the information. Good luck with your career” sounds perfectly appropriate…unless you begrudge everyone who doesn’t value your service as highly as you do.

    Honestly, not everyone thinks the cost of a true professional photographer is worth it. Not everyone can afford it. There’s a difference between the caterer, band, dressmaker, etc. and the photographer. He or she doesn’t add anything to the ceremony or reception. The photographer does not enhance the actual experience at the time. People value the experience greatly, and you may not agree with how they assign value to things, but you’re not making their choices. Good photography will help preserve the memories, but the memories themselves, the emotions involved, come with what happens on that day. Great photos of a horrible time are not necessarily highly prized.

    This is not to say that I believe extravagant expenses on food, a fancy reception hall, wedding/bridesmaid dresses, etc. are what makes the day special. Personally I think people go way overboard on things that don’t matter. But many of you here display an ugly level of arrogance towards people who have to make real decisions where to spend their money and perhaps having “Uncle Bob” do it for free actually matches how much they value the quality of the photos. If ol’ Bob manages to snap one decent photo maybe that’s enough for them. Most people I know aren’t that into their wedding photos, they might take them out once in a long while, but that’s about it.

    If it really matters to them, I think it’s appropriate to advise them on what their expectations should be if they choose to go with Uncle Bob, a weekend photog/amateur, or a professional. But to look down your nose at them for their economic choices in a very emotional, complicated, and expensive event like I see in the comments here amounts to a lot of whining that “you just don’t appreciate my art!” Well fuck you, stop bitching, put on a smile and go find clients who do and are willing to pay for it.

    There’s a big difference in my book between having a laugh at people who pretend to be a pro when they don’t know what they’re doing, and sneering at the “fools” who won’t pay up what you want to charge. As a professional (not in photography) I know what it means to hone a craft and expect to be compensated well for it, but I don’t hold it against people when they can’t or won’t pay. I guarantee you there are people who look down their noses at you because you won’t pay for the clothes, food, entertainment, furniture, jewelry, art, services, etc., that they produce and they would say what a philistine you are because you don’t get how valuable they are. Get over yourselves and have a heart to wish someone the best even if they didn’t choose your services.

    • If they can’t afford a real photographer, why the hell even bother asking for a quote in the first place?

    • Well said!

    • Tarcotti

      I have a million of these emails.

      And Fear Uncertainty Doubt, honey, let me enlighten you. I am a wedding photographer. And every single wedding I see that goes with this “relative with a nice camera” route will always spend their money on other things that are unnecessary. Trust me. Photos are the only tangible thing from the wedding that lasts, and also the day goes by so fast you don’t remember a lot. Therefore, photographs are where you should invest in the most. Nobody, and I do mean NOBODY realizes this unless you are a professional photographer. Yes I’m being a photo-snob right now, but I don’t care. And for the record, there are plenty of decent photogs out there that aren’t as expensive as others. And if they can’t even afford that, the least they could do is hire a student. Not a “relative” with a good camera, anything is better than that. I’ll tell you something about relatives. My brother in laws wedding: The uncle with the video camera has the camera set up on the tripod and has a beautiful shot of the bride set up, then when she comes into the view, the camera falls off the tripod and the this uncle fumbles with the camera while it is filming for like 10 minutes before it is pointing the correct direction again, she is already at the alter by this time.

      In conclusion, look at whoever you hire’s portfolio. Ask if they have experience in what you want them to shoot. Do they even have insurance or backup equipment or a contract? It’s possible to find someone trustworthy and that has some decent portfolio work if you aren’t willing to pay much.

      • I think it’s funny that you deem it necessary to determine what OTHER PEOPLE NEED at THEIR weddings.

        Honestly, the OP of this comment thread has an extremely valid point. If you don’t value the wedding photos too highly, get a family member to do it. With the current technology level of cameras, the photos that they get will be at the very least visible reminders of the day.

        They might not be beautiful photos, but on the other hand you’re not paying some smug asshole like you out the arse for the privelege. Get a grip.

    • First, let me just point out that photography is one of my passions, and the pictures that we’d have for the rest of our lives were the second most important thing to me coming up to the wedding besides my wife actually saying “I do.”
      So my wife and I hired a photographer, a sister of one of my coworkers who has a wonderful website and seems to have a ton of talent. But we couldn’t quite afford the price she quoted us, so she gave us a pretty nice discount while cutting some of the services she normally provides, no big deal, we agreed. So our engagement picture time comes up and we don’t really have a clue what we’re doing during the pictures, we’ve never modeled, it’s extremely awkward. She doesn’t coach us what to do or how to relax or anything, she just snaps away and the pictures turn out horrible because she didn’t take the time to help us help her. In the meanwhile she’s not returning any of our e-mails for long periods of time, but when she does get back to us, her responses are short and filled with excuses and more delays.
      A few months after we get the pictures, which we were never happy with, we try a new photographer for engagment pics, jjust to see what comes up, she’s great for us, we’re comfortable with her, she tells us what to do and how to relax and gives us some direction so that we aren’t just standing around looking at our toes.
      After these pictures turned out great we turned back to our old photographer and because she’s my coworker’s sister, we decided not to just bluntly fire her, but to give her some bs excuse so as not to hurt her feelings. We told her we just couldn’t afford a photographer anymore and we were just going to ask a family member with a really nice camera to do it. She responded very rudely, but whatever, we hired the new photographer immediately.
      My point is that maybe that response from the customer isn’t ALWAYS a true response. We easily could have (and honestly, we simply should have) been honest with our initial photographer and told her that we found her very unprofessional in that she never responded to our e-mails or treated us very well, she offered us a discounted price, not discounted effort or service, and based on the engagement pictures she showed us, we felt that she actually just wasn’t very talented. Maybe we should have told her that, she responded like we had, but maybe her ego was just telling us to f off and good luck with a family member. Either way, we had been nervous about our wedding pics with photog 1, but not with photog 2.
      But as for the videographer, maybe I really just don’t respect their craft enough or I don’t care enough about the wedding video, but I honestly just was not interested in hiring a real videographer, and I was perfectly content with having a family member just hold a hand held camera, whatever. We did hire a videographer and the guy kept getting in the way of our photographer throughout the whole ceremony, and I saw some of that when i was standing at the altar and just wanted to rip the guy apart. Seriously, i don’t care about your damn video, leave my photographer be. My point here, before it turned into a rant about the videographer, was that for me, the video wasn’t important and I would just as soon ask a family member to do it because I honestly don’t care about that aspect. I can’t imagine having that feeling for your pictures, but maybe some do. I guess that’s their decision. I wasn’t even comfortable spending the $150 we did spend on the stupid vidoegrapher, but I would have spent most of the wedding budget on a good photographer if that’s what was required.

    • bride to be

      Every time I see a staged photo taken by a “professional” wedding photographer I can’t help but think of the couple, sitting there taking direction from the person they hired, to tell them how to look in love. Maybe some people need staged photos to convince the world of how in love they are, but I don’t. A simple candid shot of me beaming and smiling surrounded by the people I love speaks volumes more than a staged photo of me and my fiance, sitting in a grassy field and staring into eachother’s eyes. Nobody does that in real life.
      Also I can’t tell you how many photos I’ve seen of wedding party jumping, or that still life of the wedding dress, or lifting the dress just enough to see the shoes, or the rings on each hand. zzzZZZZZ
      You wanna talk about feauxtography? Nothing is more fake than same staged photos everybody on the planet has of their wedding day.

  12. Good luck with the photos then, they’ll need it.

  13. skynigurl

    That’s okay, she’ll just save her money to buy a real photographer for her next wedding.

  14. Why do we care? There are always going to be people who dont have the budget or don’t care or just don’t know the difference. I know they will probably regret it and I am a full time photographer so I want everyone to want to hire me but hey, some people are just not in our market.

    Am I the only one who hopes they get some good shots? And the crack about her next wedding: So she didn’t hire a photographer, does that mean we should hope she has a shitty life?

    Maybe we should get over ourselves – photography is a big part of my life but it isn’t important to everyone. That doesn’t make them a moron.

  15. I think often times people don’t realize how much time and work (and money) goes into shooting a wedding (and doing it well). The problem is not people not having the money to afford a good photographer. It’s people thinking a photographer is overcharging them for “snapping a few pictures”. You know, you just turn your fancy camera on, click, click, click, print and done, right? Hence the “we’ve been quoted less” remark.
    Good wedding pictures don’t have to be your priority (although honestly, they really are the one tangible thing you will cherish forever if they’re well done) but don’t call a good photographer a thief just because you think photography is easy. It’s not.

    • Anonymous

      Well Spoken! I agree 110%

      • Well spoken! I do not go around telling everyone else in their profession what I think they should get paid! 🙂

    • I don’t have a single photo from my wedding, and that’s ok. Sometimes I wish I did, but I have the most important bit…21 years of marriage, 3 kids, happily ever after and all that.

  16. Katherine

    I think that this can be applied to any business. I can’t afford to hire roofers so I’ll buy some beer and have my buddies come help me. I can’t afford a dog groomer so I’ll get a bottle shampoo and some clippers and do it myself. Sure I would prefer someone to hire me but if they can’t or don’t want to that’s is certainly their choice and yes they will get what they pay for, poorly composed, out of focus, over or underexposed photos, but if they can live with that fine, just like I’ll have to live with my leaky roof and poor Spot will have to live with his bad haircut.
    More than likely the person that sent this either doesn’t know or doesn’t care about quality.
    I will say the good luck with your career does seem like a little slap in the face – kind of like saying thanks for the information (but it does me no good) and good luck with your career (because I don’t know why anyone would pay to hire you when they can get pictures for free from their friends with good cameras)

  17. I’ve received the same e-mail – most often from brides on Craigslist, but also from some that used a search / placement service too.

    One of two things is happening – they are looking for cheap – not realizing that photographers have to make a living too (in addition to paying expenses – such as cameras, insurance, gas, etc…)

    or they really are clueless.

    I understand money is tight and that they have to make decisions – but I see them making the wrong decisions over and over. Then when they get married the 2nd time – they call the professional in to get the shots that they didn’t get the first time.

  18. If I were that photographer, I’d ask for some “good camera” shots after the wedding. Blur the faces to avoid legal problems, then have a section on my web site called “We’ll go with relatives who have good cameras”. Post similar, but professional shots side by side.

  19. Mystified

    My husband is a very talented photographer. His work has been shown and bought. He, however, sees it as a hobby and runs screaming whenever anyone asks him for Wedding Photography. He understands that he doesn’t know about the proper lighting and angles it takes to make women look their best.
    I was recently in a wedding where the bride used a ” family” photographer and the pics make most of us look really, really heavy.
    Seriously, the pics taken on my MAC photobooth make me look thinner than this professional photography.

    • sorry, I might be missing something but is he a professional photographer or a family member with a “good camera”?

      and since when was it the photographer’s job to make people look thinner than they are?

      • I think I get what Mystified is talking about though. I plus size model and the number of “professional photographers” who think that lying on the floor and shooting up at me will look good is shocking. I’m a former professional lighting designer and honestly its wrong for so many reasons the least of which is that it tricks the eye into not being able to see the jaw line (this I get from doing lighting but I won’t pretend to say I know how to make lighting look good for photos all the time). The photographers always argue with me becuase it looked good on a size “0” model but doesn’t work with my body. I’ve seen a couple photographers go through these floor shots and found themselves shocked that they didn’t work out right. I have seen a few shots from people’s weddings where it looks like they photographer laid on the ground for the photos and it doesn’t flatter anyone in the wedding. These are normal people not models. I’d like to think that a professional photographer could make anyone look good (and caputre who that person is in the photo). Personally, I’m probably going to blow my budget on photos and have a pot luck dinner!

      • I tell my bride, in complete honestly, I don’t have ugly brides and a professional photographer never should. It’s your job to take the proper angles, sides, know how to set up the shot, watch the angles, etc… that will best compliment her on her wedding day. A man is sensitive about his bald spot…you avoid photos that will show it, a bride wants a bridesmaid’s arm tattoo out of photos you position her or yourself always away from the bridesmaid’s tat, a woman is heavy take shots from the angles and positioning that show less of her…bulges, a woman has a big nose…it’s about the angles. I recently had a very tiny bride with a very prominent nose and because of this she has always hated and despised any photos of herself. When she saw her wedding photos she told me she cried because she loved so many of them because she had never felt so beautiful than when looking at them. And no, I did not fix her nose, I just knew how to take the shots.. A professional photographer should know how to do any of this. These are the differences between a paid professional and Uncle Bob. Uncle Bob may be good and have great equipment, but Uncle Bob is not me. If someone would rather have Uncle Bob, that’s their choice and good luck to them. I have yet to ever have that issue. I came close once. The woman was going to let her aspiring photographer friend do her wedding and at the last minute chose to hire me with the request that her friend shoot it too. I agreed easily, after all…why not? And her friend posted the photos on her website about the same time I did and wow….the differences were extreme and a great boost to my ego. I knew I could hold my own and I didn’t begrudge her friend for trying.

  20. yep, Dave has hit the nail on the head – they are clueless.

    it’s that simple

    they aren’t nasty, they dont want the photographer to have a crap career, they are just people who don’t get it

    we know they will wish they had great photos and they will regret it, we know that investing a photographer is an investment in the true sense of the word and we know that they are . . .

    . . . well . . .

    . . . clueless

    Katherine has it right – they either don’t know the difference or they don’t care.

    So lets get a possee togther, find them and kill them.

    Or we could just move on

  21. As professional photographers, are we being snobby for disagreeing with someone’s decision to use uncle Bob? Some will say yes, but I say that we are expressing an informed opinion based on years of experience, not behind the camera, but by seeing people’s bad wedding pics and seeing how devastated these people are.

    The biggest decision you make in your wedding is who you marry. The next should be who will be recording this moment, supposedly the best time of your life, for eternity!

    We are not talking about a good DJ who will entertain you for 4 or 5 hours, or even an award winning chef who will fill your belly for the afternoon. We arent even talking about the vicar/priest/registrar or venue/church etc who is hosting your special day. We are talking about someone who you trust to make your day immortalised for generations. When you sit down with your great grandkids and show them your wedding photos, was it the great venue or the car or the cake which reminds you of that day? No, it is your photographs and if they are crap, I guarantee you that all the money you spent on teh dress or the meal, will be wasted because you will look back on your pics and hate your wedding day.

    People think nothing of paying £1000 for a dress they will wear only once, but ask for half of that for photos(which is damn cheap) and some couples will still say its too expensive.

    The reason we hope they have shitty photos on their day is a very harsh warning shot to anyone else thinking of doing it. I dont care if you book with me, if you like me and like my work, you will book, if you prefer someone elses then you will book them…….simple as that, but if you cannot afford even a cheap pro photographer,then it shoudl be because you also cant pay for lots of people, expensive dresses, great honeymoons etc and the wedding is just about teh 2 of you, but if you forego quality photos so you can go to Cancun on honeymoon or your fiance can go to Prague for his stag night, then your priorities are all wrong and it is only by screwing it up and having your big day ruined that people realise we arent being thieves or snobs or cocky or full of bullshit, we are advising you because through experience we know how you will feel when it all goes wrong.

    I dont ask a lawyer his fees and then represent myself in court, so why treat a fellow professional with discourtesy. As for the comments about other professionals thinking we should buy furniture or goods etc, you show me a furniture maker who will offer a 100year guarantee on his work! Certain printing companies and album manufacturers offer this for your photos but noone, and I mean NOONE else on the planet does teh same.

    I pay £500 for a new bed for example and it lasts 10 years, people say it owes you nothing its had a good run. If I charged £500 for wedding pics and in 10 years they faded and were ruined, I cant say they had a good life. How about teh chefs? Can I order a meal for £50 that will last me 24 hours a day for 100years and not ruin? Can i bollocks, £50 and you are hungry again in a matter of hours.

    So when these pro togs, especially the wedding togs, who have tremendous pressure to get it right everytime(you cant rerun a ceremony)charge upto £2000 for a wedding, break it down into cost per hour.

    100 years is 876,000 hours(which some of us guarantee our work for) with an average of £1200 for a UK wedding tog = £0.0013
    Just over a tenth of a penny per hour that you possess the photos and that doesnt even cover the time to shoot it and edit, that is JUST ownership and guarantee.

    I dare anyone to tell me someone else who offers these guarantees and that sort of value for money in any industry, anywhere in the world.

    Am I a photosnob? Maybe, but I prefer the term, realistic!

    • Anonymous

      Well spoken, when I get married I’m letting the bride have all the decisions except for who the photographer will be. That will be my decision.

    • Fear Uncertainty Doubt

      Your 100 year analysis is one of the most specious and self-serving I have ever read from someone hell-bent on justifying his business model. First you generalize that everyone is going to be *so miserable* if the pictures come out poorly, and they will spend the rest of their lives regretting it. Well, if your sample is people who have spent the money on your services, you’ve got a population that 1) places a high value on the photography, and 2) has every reason to justify spending the money to themselves. That’s hardly an unbiased sample. But it certainly gives you the rationalization to place yourself as the lord of all wedding vendors.

      You hope people have shitty photos because you want it to serve as a warning? As in, the probability that the photos will be bad isn’t enough, you really hope that everyone who makes what you consider a bad decision suffers for it even beyond what is likely! Gee, there’s a 5% chance that it will turn out good enough for them? Dammit, I wish it was 0.1%. That will teach those fools! And the only reason is that it will justify your profession even more and give you even more reason to puff up your chest and say that your choice of photographer is the most important thing you will ever do in life.

      Spreading out the cost of photography over 100 years, in a per hour basis, is ridiculous to the point of self-satirizing. A tenth of a penny per hour indeed. That’s a lot of paying for hours that the photos sit idle, unlooked-at and unthought-of. Not to mention the 50 years or so after the bride and groom are dead. “Your heirs will thank you for paying the tenthpenny toll to the photographer!”

      I don’t dispute that wedding photography is worth it to many. For those that it is, I say be glad you can get the kind of quality you value. And there are those who will regret not paying up and having UB take their photos. And yet, there are those that won’t. You would want them to suffer still, how dare they not hold you in the mighty esteem you hold yourself. You act like people should worship you as some sort of sorcerer who preserves time in perfect clarity.

      You are the arrogant photographer that turns people off. Who thinks his timeless work is so much more important than everyone else’s that it should be held in higher reverence than those mortals who just make temporary pleasures.

      I have a friend who is a brilliant photographer. He spent many years in high-end, high-pressure commercial photography, and takes some of the best pictures I have ever seen. His opinion of wedding photgraphy, and of wedding photographers, is as a master chef views the short-order cook. Just a thought for an arrogant SOB like yourself; no matter how good you think you are, how important you regard yourself, there’s always someone else who does what you do, better, more successfully, and with more artistry. So get over yourself and stop being a dick, and people might like you more.

    • Memories are more important than photos. My wedding day, which did not have a single photo taken, has left an impression in my head, on my life, on my heart. For both of us. I can see where photos are important but what matters is the experience. They’ve done studies on money and happiness, and experience outweighs possessions by a long shot. If you have money to spend somewhere, spend it on doing things, not acquiring things.

  22. Anonymous

    I had something similar happen to me until I mentioned I’m good with photoshop, then they reconsidered lol

  23. Ive had this happen to me many times. when I was a guest at a wedding I took my camera with me even though I wasnt shooting their wedding and watched their family member who was the “photographer” use her iphone with a time stamp on all the pictures say do this its the greatest pose ever, when really it was horrible and wanted to laugh. I took the photos I took and never gave them the pictures because in reality they didnt want to pay me for them in the first place. Ive also had one lady ask me or tell me she doesnt want to spend more than $100 for me to drive an hour there and back and spend the day with them and telling me what her daughter wanted as her pictures when she actually wanted good pictures. the mother was paying for. they ended up getting no one.

    Im just starting out professionally with years of experience just didnt think i could do it as a career so i dont charge a lot, so I can get people to give me a chance and show that I am a good photographer, but some people think everything should be free and it pisses me off

  24. Same shit happened to me. It sucks. But they’ll regret it in the end. You get what you pay (or don’t pay) for!

  25. I actually had a bride ask if I’d be okay with her uncle and a friend “helping” and having a little “creative input” ….. you’ve GOT to be kidding me…

  26. Not everyone understands the value of the wedding photographer… I sure didn’t when I got married, at my wedding we had a distant relative of my husbands (with a fancy camera, lol) photograph. She gave us about 200 unedited 3×5 proofs, we never ordered any, and every few years we get the proofs out for memories.. We were teenagers when we married (I was only 17), the photos were the last thing on our mind, our cake was from the local grocery store, I made my own vale and bouquet, wedding was in my dads front yard, lol. Now, 14 years later, I have no regrets, because that is our memories, and they are special in their own way. But… Having the appreciation for good photos that I have now (and didnt have then) I would love to get good photos of me and my Husband made, even though I wouldn’t trade our real memories of the day, and our real memories include a lot of out of focus, underexposed shots with the tops of heads cut off, etc. Though there are a few decent shots as well… Really I wish we had these shots in addition to some good, professional shots though.

  27. I recently had a friend ask me to take her engagement photos. My prompt response was “No, hire a professional.” She said that professionals were overrated and overpriced. Somehow, I think she’s going to be sorry if she doesn’t hire a professional. I’m not doing them. I don’t care how cheap you are, you do not scrimp on the photos. This is supposed to be a once-in-a-lifetime event. You need a professional.

  28. The photographer is the story teller of your day. You have to decide whether you want a novelist or Uncle Bob taking notes.

  29. LOL LOOL LOOOL!!!! And whats worse is they are on Rogers!!! HAHAHA

  30. Not looking to pick any fights, but I wanted to point out a few things:

    1) Low angles get a bad rap. The lens you’re using and the angle of the camera has far, far more to do with making a person look heavier or thinner. In addition, the slope of the ground and the pose itself factors in heavily. I’ve gotten brides that have specified “no low angles at all” without really understanding what that means. Shooting with an ultra wide at one angle can make a person look 50lb heavier, but tilting the camera just slightly at the same low angle can make them look 6 inches taller and 50lb thinner without looking too obvious.

    Shooting at 200mm while lying on the ground isn’t going to make anyone look huge – if anything, it can look dramatic, or add in that cool ‘slim dof’ look on the foreground. As long as you’re not shooting up their noses, low angles aren’t inherently bad.

    Standing up and shooting at eye level 100% of the time however, is really boring.

    2) Some photographers don’t pose their clients. I play the role of ‘director’ when I shoot, giving generalized advice at the start and jumping in to share a different concept or give basic advice like ‘stretch the neck’ or ‘make sure the camera sees you’. If a couple is in love, they should be able to show it without too much direction. It’s the same reason I don’t fix the hem of the dress very often – who cares about the dress hem? Move around a little and keep it flowing.

    3) Yes, your choice of photographer can be a huge, huge life changing event. How your wedding is captured is how it will be remembered and it’s the only constant remembrance you have of one of the most important days of your lives. It might be why people run into burning buildings to save the photos. Likewise, it might sound like a line (and it is), but good wedding photos can literally save a marriage. When I was married, we cheaped on the photog and relied on our friends and families and the photos were so horrible that I refuse to even post them as a precautionary tale.

    When I asked my family why they were yellow and out of focus, they’re reply was “let’s see you do better!” Within a month I had purchased a second hand slr, spent a month learning about lighting, metering and shortly thereafter, I shot my first wedding at the same venue I was married at.

    Being cheap is my major regret in life and, as I’m now into my 30s, I’ve spent over 14 years thinking about it every single day.

    So sometimes the riteous indignation that a photographer expresses is based off of actual real life experience and not a ‘holier than thou’ attitude. In the above photo example, I’m sorry but the potential client was a dick. If you can’t afford it, you can’t afford it, but “we’ve gotten cheaper quotes” (from who, and was their work of similar quality and style?) and “good luck with your career” is almost always a rude blowoff and a real pissy way of saying “my apologies, that’s a little out of our budget of $xxxxx, but I appreciate your reply!”

  31. Gourmetguy

    To be honest, in this day and age the cost of a professional is sometimes too much for the average low income family.
    So it’s their choice to have holiday snaps for wedding photos.
    However the fact they were actively seeking professional help makes me think they need a reality check.

  32. More grrrrrrr…………simply put, if you want cheap photos, that won’t last a lifetime then invest in disposable photos for your guests to take photos of your wedding. Why? you will probably end up with better coverage and similar quality of your wedding as you would getting with someone with a “good camera” to do it.

    Most brides never have an opportunity to dress up beautifully, elegantly and for all the time they put into creating that special day to them, having a professional photographer grabbing those photos, enhancing them and giving back something beautiful is what most brides want and deserve. It’s not only about capturing the events of the day. To see a grown man cry at the beauty of his wife or child when reviewing photos to me is validation to them that they made the right choice in selecting a professional to photograph their wedding day or family portraits.

    Also, I have noticed, too many people want more for less when selecting a photographer. I wonder if they would consider doing more for less where they work. Just saying!

  33. Thanks, but I have an even nicer camera and i know what the F*** I’m doing. So good luck with that.

  34. I enjoy playing the piano, and I have a very good Kawai piano – but I’m not very good at it. I have two very good gaming PCs and enjoy playing games, but I’m not actually very good at it.

    On the other hand, I enjoy photography and, I’m told, am halfway decent at it – but I’ve only got the camera on my mobile. Swings and roundabouts, I guess.

  35. I agree with an above statement that talks about what people value, however… I’ve been shooting for over 15 years. I shoot just about everything (events, modeling, weddings, for the newspaper, nature for myself, etc) and what I’ve found is that many people do value photography… they just don’t want to pay for it. period. As a gift to my sister, I shot her entire wedding weekend (yeah, they dropped some coin) as a gift. I covered everything from the pumpkin carving contest, our whitewater rafting day, several dinners, bonfires (and the list goes on). She more than values photography, but she probably would have never paid someone or found anyone to go to the level I did. I was in her wedding, and told her to hire another pro to shoot it. She dropped several g’s, to which her husband was a little dismayed, but in the end, the pics turned out great and she was very happy. Oh, I also took candids at the wedding and shot portraits for guests while she was having the formals shot. On the flip side, I have been approached by many nonprofit organizations who want photography for all types of events (golf tourneys, etc). They want my experience and talent, but want it all for free… and I usually do it, cuz most are worthy causes. The point is, with weddings and whatever, most people do want good photos and memories, they just can’t or don’t want to pay for it.

    On a side note, after having worked in a pro photo lab for nine years, I’ve come to realize two things; 1. Most people don’t know bad photography when they have nothing good to compare it to. Give people a great product and expose the frauds (people who charge full price for subpar work)… if you can’t, maybe you’re in the wrong business. 2. Better isn’t what most people even care about, acceptable is… trust me on this. If (insert any field) isn’t your thing, you will know acceptable and bad, but you’ll never know better unless someone shows you… and even then, you may not care (I’m that way with Blu-Ray and any type of audio… I don’t care it could be better, I’m happy with a dvd and mpg 🙂

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