(Closed) Made up my mind- NO photographer

posted 6 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
7561 posts
Bumble Beekeeper
  • Wedding: January 2013

Sounds interesting, I’ll have to give it a read. Photography does seem pretty frivilous to me, too. 

Post # 4
394 posts
Helper bee

There are so many things wrong with that article, it makes my head hurt.

Post # 5
814 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2012

I disagree with most of that article, and here’s why:


We have loads of friends who are handy with a digital SLR.

This makes my blood boil. Everybody with an SLR these days thinks they’re a photographer. Wack it on auto and click away. Thankfully many, many people don’t know what good photography looks like, but owning a good quality camera does not make them good photographers. My $4000 oven doesn’t make me a great cook. Sure, I can use the oven, but I wouldn’t cater a wedding, even a casual one.
The cost of the photos would add an extra 10% to the wedding budget, and we don’t want to get into debt. And frankly the average price of wedding photography makes me feel unwell.

Fair enough, everybody has their own budgeting. However, the prices set by photographers (professionals, I mean) may seem a lot to those outside our business, but they’re well thought out and if you break it down, they make a lot of sense.

We’re applying the infinite monkey theorem, whereby if we have enough people taking photos, we’re bound to get some album-worthy shots.

If I cook dinner enough times, sure we’ll get something really tasty eventually, but most of the time dinner will be average. Same with your photos. Your friends can press the shutter button, they are not going to be posing you, dealing with lighting, or anything else.
The author’s suggestions in the article are at best naive and at worst insulting to professional photographers everywhere.
I totally support OP’s decision, and the decision of ANYBODY to not have a photographer, but this article does not have good reasoning. Expectations need to be reasonable. Think about the photos that get taken when you go to a party. Sure they’re fun, but it wont be the same as a professional photographer. And that’s fine, as long as brides (and grooms) know and expect that.
I hope your friends get some good photos of you OP, and you have a wonderful day 🙂
Note: not trying to promote pro photography as the only option or make it sound like going without is terrible, just want people to know what to expect. If they’re happy with that, then that’s great 🙂

Post # 7
886 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

There was a bride here who recently posted an Instagram recap. I thought it was pretty similar to what some professionals are cranking out. With the right photo editing/processing, it’s amazing how average shots can be turned into pretty great shots. Just something else for those on a budget to consider.

Post # 8
1064 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

THIS was on my mind..in the beginning and as we wantd a very simple wedding, just the close family (we will be 53 people) i thaught we did not need a photographer. My stepson takes really good photos with his camera so i believed it was enough..also i know lots of people are taking their own photos..BUT then i let myself dream a LITTLE Laughing and realized that although the groom will have someone who’s competent enough to be responsible for HIS pic, i did not..and honestly i dreamt with some special/artistic photos of me all dressed up as a bride. But i did not want a strange person in our close wedding Frown..so i compromised. I was given excellent references of a photographer and asked him if he was willing to work as i wanted – 5 h of work, beginning with me in my grandparents’ house and all the cerimony and cocktail photos, just until we enter the reception. Then he’s gone.He said YES Laughingand for an excellent €€€€!!!!

Post # 9
1405 posts
Bumble bee

@pfinarffle:  Editing/processing is a bandaid approach in trying to save a “bad” photo.  And with no “photographer” and a slew of guest pictures, who is going to do the editing?

Good photography doesn’t have value for everyone, and that is ok.  Some people just can’t see or appreciate the difference of a snapshot from a professional finished image.  That’s ok, they are not the clients that professionals want anyway.  But 99% + of brides hire professional photographers.  It’s a once in a lifetime event and one of the most  important days of your life.  Seems like a no brainer to me to have piece of mind that it will be recorded with quality, consistant looking images. 

Post # 10
2589 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: September 2012

Look at the thread of non-professional vs. professional dress photos and see what an ENORMOUS difference it makes when someone knows what they’re doing with lighting, exposure time, etc. Just because someone has an expensive camera doesn’t mean they know how to take pictures.

If photographs aren’t a priority, sure, thats completley cool!  But if you go forward with the expectation that you will have album-worthy photos from guests, you will more than likely end up very disappointed.

Post # 11
2086 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: June 2012 - Pippin Hill Farm & Vineyards

I am proof that a fancy camera doesn’t mean you take great photos.

I had a job as a photographer in college, before digital, so I know about settings.  I got a nice DSLR two years ago for my birthday and am all thumbs!  I even took a class to try and translate my old skills to the new camera…I stink!


But, my standards are high.  If you truly don’t see a difference in an Elisabeth Messina or Jose Villa shot and the pictures your friends take at weddings, then ditch the pro photog. 

Post # 13
6533 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

That is quite possibly the worst article I’ve ever read and I agree with everything said by @photogestelle

If photography isn’t important to someone that’s perfectly fine. No one is forced to hire a photographer, but that article makes it sound like professional photographers are a waste of money. There is so much more involved than snapping away, but everyone has their own priorities. There are a lot of people who could care less about quality, and are perfectly content to have bad photos to remember their wedding by. 

I hear way too often from brides who told me how they used a friend or an amateur, because at the time photography wasn’t important to them, and looking back they’re so disappointed with the photos. It’s totally your prerogative to not hire a professional, and if that’s what you wan to do great. Like someone else mentioned, if you’re expecting to get album worthy photos from guests taking snapshots I would prepare yourself that it probably won’t happen.


Post # 14
395 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: December 1969

My husband and I opted not to have a pro photographer, and it is my biggest regret. If I could go back in time, I would definitely hire a pro. Now, if you simply don’t care about having pictures of your wedding, then by all means don’t hire a pro. Or if you have no idea about good photography & can’t tell the difference between a crappy snapshot and a pro image, then it doesn’t matter. But if you do care, then they are well worth the $. I agree with the pp who said that article had no logic behind it. 

All the guests at my wedding took photos, and I edited them (I’m an advanced photoshop user), but still they don’t look anything like professional wedding photos.

The reason we chose NOT to hire a pro was money. The pros in our budget weren’t good enough, and those I liked were (I thought) out of reach budget-wise. But really, I think good photography is pretty much the only thing worth spending money on, because it’s the only thing that lasts!

Skimp on everything else — food, flowers, decore, whatever — but if you actually care about preserving your memories through images, don’t skimp on photos. They are all you’ll have left.

Post # 15
1622 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

I agree that having an SLR does not a photographer make.  Below is an example.  The first was taken by a friend at my wedding with her fancy SLR camera.  The second was taken by my photographer.  HUGE difference in quality.


BUT… I absolutely DO think that not having a pro photographer would not be a bad thing.  Photographers are expensive and I would not have been able to afford one had mine not been family and given me a huge discount.  Your photos will probably not be professional caliber, but using editing programs like instagram and the like, they will probably still be pretty and frame-worthy.  I just wanted to post my example to make it clear that your expections should not be too high for guest photos. 

Post # 16
6998 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: February 2011

I personally went with a friend who was just getting into photography and while I got a great deal and TONS of photos the quality was definitly missing. I don’t blame her – i knew what i was getting myself into when hiring her (i was the first wedding she did and I have watched her grow tremedously in the past year and have high hopes for her!) but I can’t say I’m not a little sad when i look at other peoples pictures and wish mine turned out that great. There are several crucial shots that are missing. If i could do it again i would probably cut costs elsewhere and spend the money on photos. besides memories, photos are the only thing you will have from your wedding 20 years from now.


The topic ‘Made up my mind- NO photographer’ is closed to new replies.

Find Amazing Vendors