I think the marketing and hype surrounding wedding photography has gotten a bit out of control. I’m all for having some nice pictures, but I do feel like wedding photography (along with other aspects of wedding-related industries) has pushed the envelope quite a bit in terms of trying to raise people’s expectations (and the threshold of what is considered “reasonable” to spend) re. wedding photography.
I apologize in advance for the length of this, which is cut-and-pasted from another thread that was talking about wedding photography, but I feel like all the focus on getting artsy detail shots, etc., risks detracting from more important aspects of the wedding (including the sanctity, the people, etc.) The photography doesn’t have to be that way, but in the constant search for innovation, the next trendy thing, being cutting-edge, etc., it often happens. The first line below, in italics, is quoted from a previous poster’s comment on the other thread, in response to an earlier comment of mine about wanting shots of people and not wanting detail shots of the material trappings of the wedding, i.e. the dress on a hanger, the shoes, the place settings & centerpieces, etc.:
The detail shots work great for building an album telling the story of your day, the story that will be passed to future generations.
Plus, when I hear a line like this, I feel like I’m being marketed to. I’m not interested in passing along “the story of our day” to future generations – I care more about passing along the story of our marriage. For us, that’s made up of the coming together of our families and the role that they and our friends have played in our lives. And, to the extent that the “story of our day” is part of the story of our marriage, I want that chapter of the story to focus on the people who came to celebrate with us and the interactions we had with them, not the trappings.
Someday, when we’re sitting with our future children on our laps and looking at our wedding album (which, honestly, I expect will happen only rarely), I don’t want to convey to them that weddings are about ooh-ing and aah-ing over the shoes or the headpiece, or painstakingly applying makeup. I want to look through it with them and point out, “there are your grandparents, and there are your aunties and your uncle … Uncle X and Auntie Y weren’t married yet, they had just gotten engaged … and there’s your cousin Z, she was so little when she was our flower girl … ” and point out to them the relatives that may have passed on, or the ones they may not have had a chance to meet yet …
So, yeah. I get that a lot of other people put a ton of work into the place settings and centerpieces, or whatever. And, since they did put that work in, it makes sense that they would want a picture. I will probably want a picture of the 2-3 DIY projects I’ll have put in by the end. But – the table setting is not my priority. Plates are just plates, shoes are just shoes, and I don’t really want to spend money on pictures of them. Nor do I want pictures to document what we had a florist or a decorator or coordinator do with centerpieces, etc., if we were going that route. In other words, if the story is “I put a lot of effort into making these!”, that’s a little bit more worth telling, in my mind, than “we spent a lot of money on these!” So maybe our album won’t be a work of High Wedding Art. I’m very okay with that.
So *getting off soapbox* not trying to be smug or holier-than-thou, and I apologize if I veered toward that just now. But I do get really tired of being fed all those buzzwords and wedding rhetoric that ultimately boils down to a sales pitch for something I’m not interested in buying.