(Closed) Photographer has bailed on me?!

posted 5 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
563 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Is he actually a professional wedding photographer? Or just a guy who happens to take photos with a decent camera?


Trust your gut. I had a bride contact me a WEEK before her wedding, who was having a girl she knew shoot it for free, and got cold feet since she’s realized how important the photos actually are. It just happened to be one of the Saturdays I had free, so you never know! 

Post # 5
563 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: June 2014

Please try to hire a professional then, especially since you can afford one. 

Weddings are hard, I’ve had friends who are full time portrait photographers that won’t touch weddings. They’re unpredictable, you need to fully understand light and be able to know what camera settings to use without even thinking about it, and you need to have the right gear and back ups. Indoor ceremonies and receptions are DARK, which is why I have the cameras I do (which cost $3500 per camera body, and I have THREE of them). You need fast lenses, in order to shoot receptions etc. How many camera bodies does your bridesmaids fiance have? The reason I have 3 is because I shoot with 2 at the same time (two different focal lenses), and the other one is incase one of the cameras fails (which can happen to anyone at any point). They also have dual slots, in case one of my memory cards fails (which can also happen to anyone at any point), I have a back up. I’ve been to hundreds of weddings, I know when things are going to happen and I’m fast. The last wedding I shot I had the videographer come up to me and say ‘you must have missed the first kiss huh?’ since it was SUPER fast, and unannounced.. Nope, I got it because I’ve been to so many weddings that I knew when it was going to happen. Take advantage of your generous family, and get a pro! If you need help finding one, just let me know your city, date and budget and I can try and find some for you as well 🙂

Post # 6
621 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

@MrsFitness:  Don’t expect professional behavior from someone who isn’t a professional. It sounds like there was not even a contract and you didn’t plan to pay this person (you haven’t mentioned either) so I don’t see what incentive the friend’s fiancé had to uphold the agreement, especially with a newborn. Maybe they realized how much work it would be. Regardless, I would concentrate your energy now on finding a professional to cover your day so you don’t have anything to worry about.

Post # 7
8721 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

@mariematt:  This. Added to the fact that he probably felt pressured into doing it for you.

Post # 8
496 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: June 2013

Definitely find someone else. Using a non-professional who has never shot a wedding is already a disaster waiting to happen, but it’s an even bigger risk if he’s as unreliable as he seems to be.

Ask around. You never know who will be free, or can at least recommend someone else who might be.

Post # 9
3 posts
  • Wedding: December 2013

I’d definitely go with the professional photographer. If he happens to bring a camera on the day, you get more shots. But it might be worth making clear to him in advance that in light of your inability to contact him despite repeated attempts, you have hired a professional photographer. Just in case he decides on the day to try and be the main shooter, and try to jump in on the location shoot. You don’t want to upset the photographer you’ve paid for. Certainly with my videographer, having someone else taking video and interfering with their work is grounds for them to walk away from the rest of the event. 

Post # 10
1157 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

@MrsFitness:  Keep looking for a professional.  I would have given up on this guy the first time he flaked.  Try not to be too stressed out over it.  Maybe look for someone who is a little further away from you and have them travel a little bit further to shoot the wedding.  Sorry you are dealing with this.  

Post # 11
406 posts
Helper bee

Find a pro. You might get lucky. November is not a very popular month. Feel free to tell them why you are looking. If it was a weekend I had off I’d be more likely to give it up for someone in a bind, not just someone waiting to the last minute to get a “deal”( which you are not!) 

Post # 12
3941 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: October 2011

Photographers are usually hired a year in advance, so if you’re not picky I would start looking now for a professional to fill his spot.

Post # 13
7311 posts
Busy Beekeeper
  • Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast

I would start calling pros right now. You may just get lucky. Even the best pros have brides who have to cancel for one reason or another. If you book a pro who had a cancellation, you may even end up saving another bride in the process. Once you find a pro, message your friend and her fiance and let them know that you understand how busy they are and that you really want them to both be able to enjoy the wedding together, so you’ve decided to hire a pro photographer for the wedding. End it by saying how much you are looking forward to having both of them at the wedding. I think you can oput a positive spin on this that will make everyone happy.

Edit: When you contact the pros, let them know your situation. Even if they are not available, they may be able to recommend another photographer who could be available (like a second shooter they collaborate with or something).


Post # 14
118 posts
Blushing bee
  • Wedding: September 2014

I agree– take  a shot looking for a pro, you never know who will be free (I’m sure not everyone is booked every single weekend way ahead of time). Luckily your wedding is in an off-season, so it is possible. Mind sharing where you’re located and what your budget is, and maybe some bees can help with suggestions? 

Post # 15
2532 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: March 2014

Hire a professional. If you find one with an empty spot available, I am sure they’ll be happy to make money on an otherwise unprofitable day.

Don’t give this guy another moment of your time – your wedding photos are important, and he obviously doesn’t care. I would just briefly email him to let him know that you got a pro to cover where he left off (meaning, at the beginning)

Good luck, OP!

Post # 16
790 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: February 2014

hey you are getting married on my Birthday! 😉

Just start looking right now! I dont know what area you are in but if you have to expand your search within 2-3 hours if its slim picking with photographers in your immediate area. Also go pages deep in the search, you may find a gem there. Great businesses get lost on page 8…


Good luck. You Will find someone so dont panic yet!

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