I’m Booking a Cheap Photographer! My friend is photographing mine!

» Posted by on May 2, 2013 in News and Events, Wedding in Devon, Weddings in Cornwall, Weddings in Exeter | 0 comments

There are plenty of cautionary tales on the internet and indeed in the press about wedding photography, wedding photographers and friends. Based on our own personal experience we know it is only going to be your loss if you are not prepared to spend some money and take some time and investigation getting the right photographer for your big day.


Your Wedding – Your investment


  • So you’ve booked the venue and wedding breakfast let’s be conservative and say £7000 +, probably the most expensive part of your day.
  • Your stunning dress will have set you back in the region of £1000 or so.
  • Not forgetting your handsome groom, best man, ushers and bridesmaids altogether about another £1000 upwards.
  • The flowers to compliment your dress and set the tone of the reception, around £500 or more.
  • Then there is the wedding cake – possibly another £400.
  • The transport, cars/carriages or buses yet more at £700 +.
  • Not forgetting the stationery to invite everyone in the first place and let them know where they are sitting, £300.
  • Those gorgeous chair covers that you absolutely must have, £500.
  • Finally the entertainment, band or dj or both? Anything from £250.
  • All you need for your big day?
  • How will your big day be remembered?


Uncle John


So the big day arrives and Uncle John is there on hand to take some photographs for you. Does he know to capture the details while you are being prepared? Did he ask the celebrant the best place to be during the ceremony or did he just sit in his place with the rest of your guests? Can he cope when you walk out of the dark church into the bright sunshine to capture that first special moment as Mr and Mrs? Did he hold up the wedding breakfast by taking too long with the family and friends group photographs after the ceremony? How about the two of you, did he manage to pose you so that you were relaxed and comfortable and looked amazing? Did the battery run out for his camera? Was he unable to photograph the cake cutting and first dance because he had no spare battery or backup camera?


You asked Uncle John to photograph your wedding because he has a new fancy camera. When you get back from your honeymoon and get a look at what Uncle John has captured you may be very surprised and pleased or you could be terribly disappointed but who do you complain to, because he did do his very best for you? Has he managed to produce well balanced, pleasing images from your day? Does he even have any wedding photography software on his computer to do this for you?


On a personal level, we did just as many brides have done and will continue to do, we asked friends and relatives to capture the day for us. We were lucky in that they were both very handy with the camera and captured some fantastic shots but they were our wedding guests. As such they watched the ceremony with everyone else and did not take any pictures at all. So what I consider to be some of the most special moments of the day – I have absolutely no record of. (Only what my fuzzy memory can remember, and after two kids it is very fuzzy!)


The Budget Photographer


In the current economic climate many weddings are now on the DIY/Budget level, using ‘the budding photographer’ to capture their day to save a few pennies. Not that we are not slamming the ‘new-be’ photographer, everyone has to start their career somewhere. But remember, top Professional Photographers are fully booked with more than enough work, so it is not about “stealing work”, our concern is for the client only.


Many, but not all, so-called ‘budget photographers’ are able to convince couples they are qualified to photograph their wedding by having a fancy website and facebook page with a few followers. (That only costs a few pounds to set up.) Some ‘budget photographers’ copy images, album design layouts and styling from top Professionals, passing the ideas off as their own. A professional will have honed their skills for 5 – 25 years, creating their own style and design, investing in thousands of pounds on their equipment. With low resolution images online it is easy to fool some brides to be just by copying those image styles and designs. Finally, professionals will present their work in albums of superior quality, usually costing them more than it would cost you to hire the ‘new budget photographer’ for the whole day! The only way to understand the confidence and experience you are investing in is to meet the photographer first.


Our Best Advice


We hope that you will heed some of the advice given here, but just a few more tips to assist you in finding the right Professional to create your memories:


  • Always meet the photographer who should be well insured for Professional Indemnity and Public Liability and see his (or her) work at first hand.
  • There has to be some connection between you for him to capture you at your most relaxed and happy. If you don’t like him or vice versa it will show in the images taken.
  • A professional will be able to show you sample albums and give you access to full weddings to view online, some of which should cover several years.
  • Don’t base your decision on the 10/12 images on their facebook page.
  • For the thousands you spend on your special day the least you should do is invest in someone to capture it properly, it really will be all that remains after the day.


One final note, here is a quote here from Red Adair, no not a photographer but a true professional in his field:



Leave a Reply