(Closed) Etiquette for Informing Your Wedding Photographer Your Vision for the Day

posted 3 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 31
6942 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

kooshball5:  This 100%



I agree but I am not asking about changing his style of pictures. It is basically about removing a filter from the editing process.

Yes, yes you are. His editing is part of his style. Most photographers, myself included, shoot in a way that is going to be cohesive to our editing style. Against popular beliefe, photoshop is not some “fix all”. Editing is not “just applying a filter”. The most irritating thing a photographer hear is when a client says “oh you can just fix that in photoshop later”. Sure I can, but it’s going to cost you in retouching fees.

You booked him based on his portfolio and now you want something different. It IS considered rude to ask him to change how he does things. Yes, you are paying for a service….but you’re paying for a service based on an artistic skillset. Like someone else mentioned, you wouldn’t go to an all digital photographer and ask them to shoot your wedding in film. You wouldn’t go to a steakhouse and ask them to make you sweet and sour chicken. It’s like going to NYC and being upset that you don’t get to see the White House. If you wanted a certain style you should have booked that style. 

By all means you can ask your photographer whatever you want….but be prepared to offend him and leave a bad taste in his mouth. I’m not saying he will do sub-par work on purpose because of it, but mentally he’s going to go into your wedding feeling like you’re going to be unhappy with whatever he delivers and that’s NOT the mindset you want your photographer to have while shooting your wedding. 

Post # 32
2188 posts
Buzzing bee

kooshball5:  People are allowed to change their mind or, like it seems pp did, look at his portfolio again and realize things she didn’t see before. Also, having to book sometimes far in advance puts a lot of pressure on brides to make a decision about *possibly* one of the most important parts of a wedding. You and I have different perspectives on this topic, obviously. To use your analogy, pp isn’t asking for a burrito, but a cheeseburger with no pickles. Not a big deal, at least it shouldn’t be. Agree to disagree on this being such a big, pearl clutching deal. 

PP, have the conversation with your photog, and see how it goes. You never know until you ask, and I would THINK he would want to make you happy. Good luck!

Post # 33
2507 posts
Sugar bee

babygrandmabee:  people (brides) are allowed to change their minds, and notice things they didn’t notice before. people (photographers) are also allowed to say, sorry but this is my style and you saw what my pictures looked like before you booked me.

never know until OP has the conversation which way it will go. i think the brunt of the negative response to OP comes from the sense of obligation for the photograper to change his style just because she’s paying for it that comes across in OP’s first post. if she had simply said, “we booked so and so and realized only months later than he does X that we’re not really digging, is it worthwhile to try to talk with him about this? or is it just hopeless?” then i think people would have responded differently. likely something along the lines of “well, his style is his style, and he might not be receptive to changing it. however, you might as well ask him and see what he says – worst case, you book another photogrpaher that will jive better with your vision.” instead, OP’s post (including the title of the thread) has come across as very entitled, simply because she’s writing the guy a check.

Post # 34
86 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: April 2017

flower2324:  You can certainly ask him if he’d do less editing. I like the idea of showing him pictures that you DO like — especially if they’re his own work, he’d likely take it better. However, you’re ultimately dealing with a business contract. If you didn’t ask for this before signing the contract, the photographer isn’t obligated to provide editing in a style other than his own. You may be forced to lose your deposit if you decide you can’t deal with that specific editing style.

I spoke with a photographer about the exact issue you’re talking about (didn’t want over-the-top editing done), and she was downright nasty to me. I respect that photographers have their own style, but I was surprised to hear that some photographers are so attached to their style that they turn down customers whose requests are as simple as “no blurry edges”. I guess that’s why I’m not a photographer!

Good luck! Hope you get beautiful pictures no matter what 🙂

Post # 36
3570 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

my advice: eat the deposit and choose a new photographer. 

Post # 37
30 posts
  • Wedding: August 2016

@lolatheshowgirl has good advice. If you haven’t already, I would recommend asking to see a couple of full summer weddings he has shot. As others noted it may be that a lot of what he posts in his portfolio are these vignetted shots because that style is very trendy right now.

More likely than not, his complete weddings have a combination of styles because it isn’t practical for a photographer to edit (other than maybe color correct) every image of the hundreds they will provide you. Once you have seen a complete wedding then have a dialogue with them indicating the images you like best from their portfolio and why you like them would be the way to go.

I had similar concerns with the photographer I hired before I hired them (they were great at composition, capturing emotion and photojournalistic style but tended to post a lot of sunbleached type images) but once I saw a couple complete weddings I saw that their complete weddings were well balanced in style.  

It is true that photographers as artists, have a style they persue that reflects who they want to be as artists. You can always ask him to provide both his artistic edit and the unedited images as well. Though as others have said, your mileage may vary because he may naturally default to images/exposure/composition that lends itself more to this style so while the unedited image may not be technically a bad one it may lack some emotional or artistic punch.

I would stop short of telling them NOT to do any vignetteing because you may be surprised with a couple shots that amaze you. Giving them guidance on more this less that gives them the creative flexibility to capture and create the best image with the variables at hand.

TL:DR – use images from his own collection to drive the conversation and it will go much better than using other photographer’s images.

Post # 38
2 posts

Hi all… Pro here 🙂 (I’ve been shooting weddings for 10 years)

I have a few editing styles that I use depending on the tone of the wedding and my client’s desires. Some couples really love the antique vintage look and others love more vibrant colors. I get an idea of the client’s vision before hand and keep that in mind as I’m shooting. Not to mention some processing looks great for some weddings and does not work well for others.

If you take an example of a editing from his portfolio that you love vs one you don’t like as much and use it as an example of what you like, id assume he would be ok with that. Though, I would advise against showing another photographers work as an example, that can be a touchy area with us 🙂

It would be a shame to choose another photographer base on overuse of vignette that may be easily left off and perhaps he’s not even that attached to using it. Id try to focus on his style of shooting and the over all feeling you get from his photos, if you resonate with that, that’s what’s most important!

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