Photographer has never done a wedding before

posted 3 years ago in Photos/Videos
  • poll: Would you hire a photographer who's never done a wedding before?
    Yes, absolutely! : (1 votes)
    1 %
    Yes, if I liked his other work. : (31 votes)
    24 %
    Not unless he was family/close friend or a great deal. : (23 votes)
    18 %
    No way. : (76 votes)
    58 %
  • Post # 3
    Member
    595 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    @Nostawyn:  If i’m being honest, I would say absolutely not. You get what you pay for when it comes to photography, and if the pictures came out badly I would never forgive myself. Your wedding day happens ONCE, you can’t have a do-over. I would pick someone with experience, and who you can find more than one picture you like..

    ETA: If you don’t mind me asking, what is your budget for a photographer? I can help you look!

    Post # 4
    Member
    8016 posts
    Bumble Beekeeper
    • Wedding: September 2015

    I mean youre not going to get a better deal but just be prepared that surely you will sacrifice quality and quantity not going with a pro.

    But if the budget is super tight, and youre willing to take the risk (which is considerable) then I would just be sure to give him a detailed shot list and make sure he has a pro flash at the least.

     

     

    Post # 5
    Member
    3934 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    @Nostawyn:   My suggestion would be to ask him to do a portrait shoot, or maybe engagement shots, but not the whole wedding.

    Wedding photography is technically and artistically demanding, and those photographers who do it well have years of experience and training under their belts.

    For your special day, for all the work you’ve put into planning, I hope you will consider a photographer who isn’t a long shot.  (no pun intended)

    Post # 8
    Member
    4827 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2013 - Upstate NY

    @Nostawyn:  I would oersonally not hire him…. I mean, it’s just a crapshoot. He might be really talented. BUT there is so so so much involved in weddings- it’s not just taking and editing pictures- lining the family up, taking the right flatteringp poses (a good photographer never makes you look fat), what details and decor to shoot, catching all the important first moments, even knowing when the sun sets on your venue so he can get the right lighting. Wedding photography is highly specialized. I just wouldn’t risk it personally!

     

    Post # 9
    Member
    3934 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    @Nostawyn:   Just reading your update here – you write that he “has access to all of the professional equipment.”  Does that mean he does not OWN pro grade camera gear?  If not, would it be insured if damaged while he was shooting your wedding?  Or would you be responsible?  Camera bodies and lenses can and do run well into the multiple thousands of dollars.  Just a heads up.  🙂  

    Post # 10
    Member
    595 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    @Nostawyn:  In my area the average price of a wedding photographer with 5+ years experience is between $1800 – $2500. For some people the photographer is more of a priority, therefore they devote more of their overall budget to the photographer. I personally won’t be skimping on the photographer despite the fact we are spending more than I would like! It’s crazy how expensive a wedding is haha. I agree with PP though, you can’t beat $500 but you most likely aren’t going to get the BEST pictures!

    Post # 11
    Member
    2782 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: November 2013

    @Nostawyn:  I would say it depends.  

    Our photographer for our wedding is a friend of my husbands.  He is NOT a professional photographer, but it’s a major hobby for him– and he’s done a few weddings before.  He had to start some where!

    For us though– he wouldn’t allow us to pay him.  And this makes a huge difference in terms of whether I would hire someone who doesn’t have a ton of experience.

     

    Now, I can confidently say after the fact that I would have paid B the same amount I would have paid any other photographer– him and his wife were amazing and really made the day wonderful.

     

    If you have a budget that allows a professional, and you know you’ll be disappointed if things aren’t perfect in terms of photography– I’d go with an experienced person.  But if $ is an issue– clearly this guy is willing to give you a deal, and he feels he’s confident enough to shoot your wedding.  That’s kind of big deal– unless he’s an ass and is money hungry LOL

     

    Post # 12
    Member
    1021 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2014

    @Nostawyn:  everyone has to start somewhere!  i like giving people chances.

    Post # 13
    Member
    1367 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: September 2013

    I think it depends on what you’re looking for.  For us, good portraits were important but we really wanted someone who could capture the spirit of the event and all of our guests.  We love candid shots but at the same time didn’t want any unflattering pictures of anyone.  We needed a photographer who could take a photojournalistic approach and it wouldn’t be everyone’s cup of tea.

    If you would like his exact same style for your wedding, than maybe.  But I would tell him your concerns – being honest and direct is key. And I would interview other photographers to get a sense for what they offer, and I would discuss with him.  For instance, my photographer sent a very detailed questionnaire about what shots we wanted and things to know ahead of time so that things would go super smoothly. You want to make sure he’s treating you with the same level of professionalism.

     

     

     

    Post # 15
    Member
    1112 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: August 2013

    My mom takes gorgeous pictures, but there’s no way I would’ve asked her or her photograher friend to do our wedding, because they mainly photograph nature. However, since this guy mainly does fashion, I’m sure he has tons of experience working with people and the challenges that will arise at a wedding. Also, since he has assisted at one, he at least must have some idea of what to do! I think you should give him the chance, and I’m sure they will turn out beautiful!

    Post # 16
    Member
    1068 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: July 2014

    @Nostawyn:  We’re hiring a pro friend who has never solo shot a wedding.  We talked about it for a long time and then realized that we love his images, and we want great pictures of our wedding, but we don’t really care if we don’t end up with a magazine-perfect shot of the kiss.  My basic train of thought was “if he misses the shot of X, will I be devastated?”  And the answer was always “no.”

    If you want to have a lot of security about how your photos are going to turn out, or if you want wedding photography that looks like wedding photography, you should hire someone who is experienced with weddings.  If you just want nice pictures and you think this guy takes nice pictures, I think that’s a perfectly fine strategy.

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