Post # 1
I have every vendor for the wedding booked except for the photographer and the baker. We have interviewed a photographer and just didn’t get around to booking them. Then the other week someone that we are friends with said she would do our wedding photos for around $300. The only problem is, that between the two photographers i’m not sure what our friend would be providing us with. (i.e. does this come with engagement photos, prints, etc) I’ve been trying to set up a time but so far I’ve been so busy it has not happened.
When I was talking to a friend the other day about her wedding she said the only thing she regretted about her big day was having a family friend do the photography. I also know someone else who never got her wedding pictures back. I’m trying to debate between the two photographers because right now my FI doesn’t have a job. if photog #2 will give us the rights for her photos then I can just print them off later. But I don’t want to regret either choice. So, if I can get a definite answer of the plan with photog #2 should I go with them?
Has anyone had a friend or family member take their wedding photos and later regret it?
Post # 3
Does this person do photography full time or have a business?
Post # 4
I think it really depends on how your prioritize photography. For me its my number one priority in wedding planning and was the first thing I booked, 18 months ahead of my wedding because I wanted my photograher.
However, considering you haven’t gotten around to it it seems its not so important for you. So having a family member has pros/cons. Obviously pro is that it will be less expensive. Con is that family member doesn’t get to enjoy the wedding as much and pictures likely won’t be as high of quality.
IMO if I could fit a photographer into the budget I would do it. You will have the photos the rest of your life and don’t want to regret it later.
Post # 5
For me, I had a groomsmen’s brother do ours but he does weddings on the side, so he’s had wedding experience before. (I guess he’s not professional because he has another job. I consider him semi-pro.) I did have a brief period after the wedding when I did regret it but only because one of my friends had a photographer who was amazing and I was jealous that my photos didn’t look as good. About a few months later, I was putting together my photo album and I was looking through the photos and I thought they were great! Not amazing but great! I was on a budget when I hired him. I spend $400 on him. Looking back, I chose him because of my budget and if I had to choice to do it again, I would chose him again. I know it would have been nice to spend another 700 to 1000 more on photographer but I don’t know what that would have done to my budget. Would I have wanted to splurge a little more on little details? Luckily, most of my expenses were paid off with the gifts I got, so that was something I was lucky on. I actually pride myself that my wedding was very close to the amount I wanted to spend on my wedding. For 130 guests at a sit down dinner including everything except the honeymoon, it cost me 11k. I had my wedding in the suburbs of Philadelphia so things were not cheap. My friends still can’t believe I pulled it off.
Post # 6
We had a family friend do it. He does photography on the side and he did all the ceremony pics. My dad also does photography on the side and he did some as well. We didn’t hire a full professional. There are some things I regret and some things I don’t. When you hire someone to do pictures who is a professional then their work at your wedding reflects them and their job. Not that anyone else won’t try their hardest to do the best pictures possible but their career isn’t on the line at your wedding. I would get full rights to your pictures if you are not hiring someone professional. Definetly something to ask anyone who you may be considaring doing your pics.
I also found that my “professionals” were not my favorite. We did get some super cool ones but I had so many family and friends who took some pretty awesome pictures that I was happy I didn’t spend a good chunk of money relying on one person to capture every good shot. Plain and simple that one wont happen. We had about 500 pictures sent to us just from guests using their personal camaras. I actually just got pictures from a friend who got a shot of my first expression when the church doors opened to go down the aisle. Our photographer only got my husbands expression. Its pretty cool that we now have both of our first expressions because of 2 different people.
My advice is, if unique artsy pictures are really important to you then by all means hire someone in the industry. If you just want someone to capture fun and intimate moments then I would save a little money a hire a family/friend to do it. You won’t regret it!
Post # 7
One of my friends had a friend do it and it is her ONLY wedding regret. She got better pictures from guests.
Post # 8
My MOH had a family friend do her pics because she kinda felt obligated to use her. Unfortunately, her pictures suck big time!! It is the biggest regret she has. She didn’t get most of them and the ones she did get aren’t even worth framing.
I don’t know what kind-of experience your family friend has but please be careful. I’m a believer in you get what you pay for and $300 sounds too good to be true. GL!
Post # 9
@MissFlipFlops: I love unique pictures but I’m not into photography that much, so it is not my top priority. i do want beautiful pictures to remember the day but with that my top priority is simply to capture the intimate, fun moments of the wedding. I have seen this friends’ photos and she does a wonderful job. I haven’t seen wedding photos from her but have seen couple’s sessions she’s done and they look amazing and intimate.
Post # 10
I’m in the same boat. I’m nervous because my FI’s friend has offered to do our photography. He doesn’t normally do weddings. He’s a freelance photographer and has been published in magazines. I saw that he did a layout for a featured business owner in the area. The pictures were great and his nature pictures are great. All the photographers send out 2 photographers, we will only have the one. The only thing is that we did contract a videographer. We have a lot of family in Puerto Rico that probably won’t be able to make it to our wedding, so we will have another reception/dinner in PR and show the video. Our videographer is new to the business, but has his own company, but not as expensive as others. I’m hoping that between the two we get good pictures. Photography is so hard to skimp on, because this is what will hold our memories of that day. But the pros are just so expensive.
Post # 11
We also had a friend shoot our engagement pictures and our wedding and let me tell you, we DO NOT regret a second of it!! Our photog was amazing, he was professional and had an assistant as well. He charged us a fraction of the cost and gave us 3,000 photos to pick from. However, this friendor is a professional wedding photographer and does it on a full time basis. We had very specific taste when it came to the style of photography we wanted. I am not photogenic in the least, and he made me look like a model.
Post # 12
Then I would just go with hiring someone who is a friend. Your day is going to be beautiful, your going to look beautiful and your guests are going to be happy. Any camara can/will capture that. It sounds like who you have in mind already does some amazing work. I would totally take her on if I were you! People think that talent always equals alot of money but thats not always the case. And on the other hand how many times have you seen someone dish out thousands for a “good” photographer only to end up with pics they hate?
The things you will be “sacraficing” is clarity, uniqueness, and color. What a photographer does is capture the best shot/pose possible and then work that picture endlessly until it looks “perfect”. I’ve watched my dad do weddings and he works and works all the photos. If you look at the first pictures that he took the clarity is better due to the professional camara but the actual picture/expression/pose is not something that you couldn’t get from anyone else. Its not until he smooths the skin, adds light to the faces, and dims the background that the pictures then turns “professional”.
Ask the lady your hiring if she usually edits her photos. If she does and your willing/wanting her to edit your photos to get rid of all “flaws” then she might request to have some rights to them. That would be something I would totally give up to have someone edit all my pictures for cheap. If she doesn’t want to or doesn’t edit pictures then I wouldn’t be too upset. Theres plenty of good photo editing programs you can buy. It just will take a little more time and work on your end. Okay, I’ll be done now! lol I just felt there was some more insight I could offer! =)
Post # 13
@MissFlipFlops: What you are paying for, when you hire a professional is piece of mind that you will end up with nice photos in any lighting condition. Also, a common mistake for people that don’t do weddings often is missed shots, and these can’t be recovered. So yes, you will probably end up with nice images, but you may have some missing footage throughout the day, possibly some important moments.
I would also have the friend show you sample work so you can get an idea of how edited the image will be. Are they going to burn them right out of the camera or do some corrections first?
Last, if you do go the friend route, write up a contract just as if you hired a professional.
Post # 14
My brother had a friend do photos at his wedding and it was a terrible mistake. They were awful. For that reason one of our top priorities in our planning has been hiring a professional photographer.
Post # 15
I was just talking about this last night. A really close friend of mine is an amazing photographer and also does weddings. However, his rule is that he will not shoot a friend or family member’s wedding. I would never ask him for the main reason that I want him to be there to enjoy my wedding and not have to work it. His reasons are that along with the different expectations that can sometimes come about when you work with a friend or family member. They might automatically expect a huge discount or feel that they can treat you differently b/c they know you. I’m not saying this would happen in every instance but I’d rather pay a little more money than risk a strain on a friendship.
Post # 16
UNless my friend or family member was a professional photographer whose portrait I had seen and loved I Would never do this. I just think its taking a big risk and out of anything there is to regret you do not want photos to be one of them!