Post # 1
So as I’ve posted before and am posting now… Some issues involving but not directly related to my inlaws.
Our photographer backed out on us in December. Just a few months before the wedding. In a desperate attempt to find a photographer in time we accepted the help of an inlaws friend. She lives out of state and is just getting into photography. She isn’t the best at editing but we were just going to ask for unedited photos for the wedding.
So we’ve been talking on and off since and we agreed to a set fee. Plus a hotel room for the night of the wedding. No issues. I was still reluctant looking at her photos from other weddings. The only edits it seems she can do is black and white and adding fading and black in the background of photos. It looks like the editing is being done on a cheap editing software and not photo shop. None the less we had a photographer.
Now she emails me saying she will not be bringing her daughter to help with the photos and instead is bringing a man with her. So she will need TWO rooms for TWO nights each. That’s a LOT of money and we’re on a $5,000 budget.
If I tell her I can’t do it one of two things will happen. She will travel alone getting only part of the photos I want and or my FMIL will be upset at yet another wedding plan change. Seems she’s getting upset with me a lot now a days when it comes to the wedding. It’s her friend so I know she’s not going to be happy. No matter what we say I will be wrong in doing so.
If I allow her to do it, the money for the hotels will come out of our honeymoon fund. The honeymoon is already paid for and we wont have much money for food drinks or anything. And we will get alright photos at the wedding.
I don’t know what to do now. Any advice? What would you do in my shoes?
Post # 3
I would remind her that when you set up your arrangements, you agreed to pay for one room for her and her daughter for one night. That is what you could afford which is why you agreed. Now that she wants to change the plans, she will need to compensate for the additions. This is not your fault, it’s bad taste on her part and I would stick to my guns on this one. Be polite, but stern. She shouldn’t be able to take advantage of you just because she is friends with your FMIL. Good luck!
Post # 4
@anon656987: Do you have a contract? Please say yes. It’s very important to get a contract so the photographer is accountable for their services that you paid for. It also sets expectations that should be mutually agreed upon including deliverables and a timeline. I can’t stress enough that friend, family or not, you NEED a contract.
Who is this second person that she is bringing? I’m assuming this is a second shooter. I’d explain to her that you agreed to use her because the total cost of her services and travel fit your budget and you don’t have the money to pay for a second room. Ask if there is any way they can share or if there is a better option that will keep the contract price the same. I suppose worst case, you don’t get a second shooter, but if that is the case, thens he should owe you some money back. Perhaps with that money you can hire a local second shooter for a few hours.
Post # 5
Thank you both. Unfortunately there has been no contract signed as of yet. After my first photographer backed out I realized how important contracts are but just another thing about this woman.
We emailed discussing the details, what I wanted and what her fees were. She was supposed to send a contract via mail. I sent her an email 3 weeks ago asking if everything was ok, I hadn’t heard from her and we needed to finalize things. Heard nothing back. So last night I email her again about wanting to get everything finalized and that’s when she finally responded and went on about her plans changing and now she will need a room for two nights instead of one. I ok that and the next email I get from her she says she needs two rooms for the two nights for her second shooter.
I do need to be firm with her about this. I just don’t know how my FMIL will take it. She’s already upset with us for other wedding related things and how much things have been changing. But its things like these why things are changing. Last minute everyones wanting to charge us a lot more than the initial agreement.
Post # 6
Well first thing – while editing is a part of the process, most of the editing we do to our photos isn’t drastic. If you don’t have a good foundation in the first place and have to rely on it as a crutch it’s not a good thing. Sounds like this may be the case for this person.
Personally if it was me I’d avoid this like the plague. Find someone else.
Post # 7
@anon656987: Where are you getting married? & how much are you paying her?
Post # 8
I would look for someone else, she is throwing up a lot of red flags.
Post # 9
Don’t hire this person. Hire a local photography student if you have to, but do not hire family and/or family friends.
Post # 10
Honestly, this sounds like more trouble than it’s worth, so I’d probably look for someone else. But I can understand not wanting to ruffle the feathers of your FMIL, so if you would like to give her another chance, I would give her an ultimatum. Tel her that you agreed to1 room for 1 night and that is all you can afford. If she can’t do that then you’re sorry, but you’ll find somone else. If she cn do that then tell her you need the contract by X date.
Post # 11
Thank you all for the help and advice!
I talked to my fh about this and we agreed to try to find someone else.
He doesn’t like her photos either and we’re just tired of the hassle. So we decided we’re going to post at our university (they have a photography program) fliers asking for beginner photographers with some experience and we included price date and time to hopefully get some responses. I also included “MUST be willing to sign a contract” yeah, I’m NOT getting screwed over again!
Now it’s the trouble of finding a way to tell my FMIL that we wont be using her friend. I don’t want to stir up any drama, and quite frankly I don’t feel comfortable. I feel like I’m being blamed for everything that is happening even though I’m the one getting screwed over. So I told my fiance he’s going to be the one to discuss it with his mom. Although I love the future in laws, I don’t need to deal with another lecture about whatever. It’s my wedding, I’ll spend my money how I see fit and not to be rude but I don’t like being told I’m doing things wrong or I don’t know what I’m doing when I do. Most importantly I don’t want to be made to feel bad for decisions involving my wedding I will be paying for, when all I’m doing is looking out for my fiance and myself when it seems others are trying to take advantage of us
Post # 12
@anon656987: I am glad you are finding someone else. Some of the sh*t these so-called professionals pull these days is nonsense. Yes, plans change sometimes, but a real professional would eat any unexpected costs. I think that’s what happens though sometimes when you get someone on the cheap. There isn’t enough profit built in for them to correct any issues like that without putting the burden on the client. Good luck, I hope you find a great student whose photos you actually LIKE!