Post # 1
As an art student, I am friends with many aspiring photographers. Ever since I got engaged, I have been bombarded with facebook messages and posts telling me that I should have them photograph my wedding. Even though I would save a great amount of $ if I went with a friendor, I feel like I would lose out on the final product as they have little to no experience with weddings. How can I politely tell people that I am not interested in having an unexperienced photographer without majorly hurting some feelings?
I am also having the same problem with “friendors” wanting to do other things, such as baking the wedding cake, and also for a band. What to do?!
Post # 4
I wish we had any “friendors” as an option! I don’t know anyone that does anything wedding related, so we don’t even have the option to have a friend do the vendor job at a discount.
Is there any part of the wedding that you wouldn’t mind having a friend do for you? I think it would be worth it to save the money in some area of the wedding that isn’t as high of a priority to you guys.
But to answer your question, I think you can simply thank them for offering, and say that you will let them know if you are interested in their services when you are ready to book that kind of vendor.
Post # 5
I’m dying to hear the answers. My mom took the liberty of giving my email to her friend who works in finance but has a husband in photography… They’re nice people, I’ve met them once but now I feel obligated to at least explore them as an option.
Post # 6
Hire a professional but still let them come and shoot. At least they can have the exp without the pressure of getting it right. Everyone has to start somewhere right? You may end up liking some of their shots better than the pro.
Post # 7
@Mr. Tattoo: Most pros would not allow that. It usually states in their contract that they are the primary photographer, and that other photogs are not allowed (obviously casual shots by family, friends are allowed, but someone trying to pad their portfolio would simply get in the way). The last thing you want is a pro missing out on shots because your overzealous friend is trying to get the same shots for their portfolio!
Post # 8
I would just tell them that you had already perused photographers, and there were some that you saw that you really want to research further because you really liked their style. Or tell them that you are going to hire a professional because you don’t want to have to choose between all of your friends. Or, if they are invited to the wedding, tell them that you would rather have your friends there as guests, not employees 🙂
Post # 9
I don’t really have any advice other than saying you are looking into all of your options for wedding vendors. But I did have something like this happen to me and FI.
My mom was really pushing us to use her friend’s son as our photographer. I looked at his website, in good faith and told her absolutely not. She had no idea why and kept pushing me to use him. Then I told her that much of his website had weird bondage crap (like a shot of half naked girls in a prison cell…wtf?). Apparently, he now has a separate wedding-only website, but we are not using him.
Post # 10
Wondering what would happen if you told them you appreciate the offer but you’d rather let them just enjoy the wedding as guests? Or, if they’re not invited, that you worry about mixing friendship/business – you’d rather not risk your friendship… I’m thinking that would give a positive spin on things. The bottom line is that you have the right to choose who you hire for your wedding, and if you want someone with experience that’s ok.
Post # 11
Perhaps you could tell them “thanks for the offer but we’ve already hired a pro photographer.” Then suggest (if you are inviting them to the wedding) that you would still love it if they could take many candid shots as a guest. If their candid shots turn out nice I’m sure they could still use those in their portfolio and you get some extra nice shots from a guest’s point of view! Plus it’d put less stress on your friends and more time for them to enjoy the reception.
Also, do you have your pro photog the entire time? Ours only lasted 8 hours and couldn’t be there for the getting ready shots or late at night. So I had a friender photog who came to the salon and hotel room in the morning to take pics of all of us getting ready. And then she also took pics of the reception hall before anyone else had arrived. The bridal party and my husband and I were out around town taking pics with the pro photog at that time. So, as others said, just make sure any friendors don’t interfere with the pro photog. It worked out really well with my friendor. She didn’t overlap with him at all and actually filled in during the times he wasn’t booked for (early morning and late night).
Remember to tell friends and family to turn off their flash if they are going to be taking pics at the same time as the pro too! Outside flashes will interfere with the pro’s lighting!
Post # 12
@R.Elliott:You are right! It is a BLESSING to have so many artsy friends bc wedding vendors are OVER THE MOON expensive.
@artlover: I think I might be tempted to have a friendor do the cake. I would still want a tasting and a portfolio, just as if it was an established baker. And maybe have your friend do some e-shots or bridal pictures. They may just ROCK and save you a ton of mooolah!!Like amariem25: says, you could have them come to the wedding as a guest to take candid shots and you wouldn’t have to order so many shots from the pro photographer.
It really is good to have so many options. But if your heart is really set on hiring pros, you should do just that. Regardless as to what we say or what saves money. I am a firm believer in doing what you want for your wedding.
Post # 13
My #1 piece of advice is to never work with a friendor or a famdor unless you really don’t care what the outcome will be. It sounds like you do care.
The easiest way to let a friendor down is to tell them that you’ve already booked a photographer / baker / etc. If they insist (for example, if they want to make their service your gift and you know they can’t really afford to do anything else), you could use them for something on the side. A photographer friendor could do e-photos (worst case is you’d take more e-photos with a professional photographer). A baker friendor could make a grooms cake or some other desert for the rehearsal, etc.
Post # 14
I’ve had a lot of this as well, and I decided from the beginning that we wouldn’t be using friends/family as vendors (unless I was ABSOLUTELY positive their product would be great). I had to explain to FFIL that while I appreciate that so-and-so’s second cousin makes wedding cakes and this cousin’s boyfriend has a band, I could not be comfortable knowing that if something went wrong there was no contract and no recourse (how can you yell at/get your money back from Aunt Murial or never have hard feelings of the band ‘ruining the day’?)
I’d simply tell them that we appreciate their offers but I think we’re going with professionals that are not our friends/family so as to be able to maintain our professional contracts with the vendors and our personal relationships with friends/family.
Post # 15
Tell them your venue requires liability insurance from vendors.
Post # 16
Wow ladies, thanks for all the great advice! This really helped me out in how I should handle these situations 🙂