Post # 1
Hi bees–I need some advice here, my photographer is MIA! She was a highschool friend, and has recently started her photography business. We connected a couple years ago on Facebook and I knew after seeing her work that she would be my first pick for photographing my wedding! She is the first vendor that we booked! And, initially things were phenomenal–we got our e-pics done right away, and paid her 1/3 deposit. The completed pics arrived about 10 weeks later, which was fine, we knew to expect a little longer because it was right around the holidays. This is when things started to go downhill–I tried several times to get a hold of her via e-mail to discuss the details of the wedding day and possibly extending out the time we had hired her. No response. 3-4 months went by, and no response. Then she blocked me from her facebook page (personal and business). I rec’d an e-mail from another bride (whose wedding is this month) and she was concerned that she hadn’t been able to contact the photographer either. Through my research, I noted that there was not one positive review floating around on the internet, all of the reviews wreaked of unprofessionalism and non responsiveness! I sent her mom an email, inquiring if she was okay, and still in the business. The email I rec’d back was positive, that she was still photographing and quite excited for my wedding. Still no response from the actual photographer! My emails to her were getting longer and longer and always requested a response by a certain date, stating that we were getting closer to booking a new photographer. Still no response. I filed a claim with BBB–still awaiting a response.
We went ahead and booked another photographer, and then heard from her about a week after we had done this, her e-mail was very short and just basically stated that she was sorry things turned out this way, and that she wished me luck in the future. I went ahead and placed reviews on Wedding Wire and Yelp, nothing nasty, just stating the truth–she really is talented and really could make a name for herself if she could get the business part down.
I had no problems with what I had done until tonight, when I rec’d an e-mail from her mom, surprised that I had filed reviews on her daughter, when she was going through personal issues, etc, etc.
Would you have fired and re-hired your photographer if you found yourself in the same predicament? And if you would have, would you have gone on to post reviews about your experience, to “warn” other brides?
Post # 3
Sorry, you had to go through this but you did the right thing by adding reviews.. She’s running a business and should have contacted you instead of having to hunt her down through her Mom. I would not rehire her. She sounds unprofessional and flaky. You’ll have enough to worry about on your wedding day and need a professional on-time wedding photographer who can and will handle the job.
Post # 4
I think you were right to hire someone else. If you’re running a business, you need to treat all of your customers with the same amount of respect and professionalism. Just because she knew you prior to doing business with you doesn’t mean that your relationship should be unprofessional. You’re a bride with many other things going on. The last thing you need is a vendor who isn’t communicating with you. For all you know she could have taken off and never said a word about it and you never would have known. Blocking you on FB is pretty shady because you know she went through and did that. it’s not something that just automatically happens. As far the reviews, I think you were right to share your opinion and your experience with others. Potential customers have a right to know the truth about sellers. After that last email I would have been like “Nice try, but I’ve already had to hire someone else because of your lack of professionalism. Everyones got problems, but most professionals don’t let them interfere with their business.”
Sorry your experience sucked! Hope the rest of your wedding goes well!
Post # 5
It doesn’t matter what is going on in her personal life – doesn’t excuse unprofessional behavior. And if she needs her mommy to stand up for her, she reallllly isn’t ready to be a photographer!
Post # 6
You have enough to worry about on your wedding day to deal with her. I would not even consider hiring her back and there is no fault on you. Her potential failure is on her own shoulders through her own actions. There is no way someone can not possibly find 5 min to e-mail their clients to inform them at the very least that they are still on board or perhaps let them know that they are going to be difficult to reach.
Post # 7
I think you had every right to post reviews about her warning other brides. You said you weren’t nasty, which is great, being unbiased, yet still truthful. And you need to protect yourself too, which I totalllly get. It’s not fair to you that you had to go through all this stuff, track her down through her mother, etc. And you know what, it’s business, so you don’t need to feel bad at all about her having personal stuff going on. You did what you needed to do!
Post # 8
Thanks bees =) I thought that I did the right thing, but I just needed confirmation. And, yes, my reviews were very professional, I think that I still gave her like 3/5 stars, because her work is great! And we loved working with her (the little bit that we did). But the fact that we could never get a hold of her really scared me…I was lucky to find another wonderful photographer 6 months before my wedding, I can’t imagine if I had to go through that 2 weeks before my wedding!!
Post # 9
Wow. When you get reviews written about you for being unprofessional, it doesn’t make you look any more professional to have your MOM email the people who wrote them. Most people are not allowed to carry personal problems into their workplace- her photography business is no exception. Don’t feel bad; honest reviews really help people when they are searching for vendors!
Post # 10
10 weeks for epics? you dodged a bullet!
Post # 11
If you were in GA, I’d swear we had the same photographer.
My photographer was supposed to send out proofs from my engagement session 6 weeks ago and I haven’t gotten anything. She told me 4 weeks ago that she had a family emergency and apologized for the delay and advised the package was in the mail. I still haven’t gotten anything. Since the email a month ago, she’s stopped returning my emails and phone calls. Luckily I “won” her services, so I’m not out any money.
I’ve had to scramble to find a photographer 7 weeks out.
Post # 12
Misskoala–I’m so sorry that you are going through this! It sucks =( I do hope that you find a photographer soon! I emailed everyone that I knew for recs and then stalked weddingwire and yelp for their top 10 photographers. I emailed/called all of them, and told them my price point and then asked if they were available. Thankfully, I found one who recommended me to another photographer that she thought was closer to my price point. He wasn’t going to take anymore weddings in October (my date was the only weekend that he had off!), but once I told him my story, we were able to sign a contract! I am so thankful that I found someone that I could afford and that has the same style that we were looking for. I hope that you have the same luck!