I think the reason peak wedding season has been brought up by a few posters is because any wedding photography company has a ridiculously full work load right now. Nov.-March is when most of these companies play catch up. June-Sept is pandemonium however. I say this with extensive personal experience with such things.
Durring this time of year most companies have their employees working 7 days a week, mon-thurs editing 6-8 hours a day, and fri-sun working 12 hour days shooting weddings. When I did this type of work I was esily working 60 hour work weeks durring the summer with maybe one day off every 2-3 weeks. Unfortunately you’re right in the middle of their storm right now.
I do however agree it is unaccpetable that they told you next day on the edits and it has been nearly a week. They need to be honest and realistic about the situation. I’m familiar with companies like this. I worked for one a long time ago and it used to drive me nuts. They’re afraid to tell you things will take a week because they know you don’t fully understand their current workload and what the edit will entail. So they tell you what they think you’ll like hearing because they want to keep happy clients. It’s well intentioned, but it’s not the right thing to do and it drives not only you crazy, but probably the staff editing the photos crazy.. It might be time to call the owner of the company and let him know that while you understand this is their busy season you would prefer they be up front and give you reasonable time lines going forward.
As for “missing pictures”.. The reason they keep “popping up” when you mention them is because the set most photographers release has been gone through by the artist, and certain photos edited out. This is for a few reasons:
Giving a client 1000+ photos to go through is really over whelming for that person. Photographers remove photos where people have closed eyes, funny faces, etc.. We’re used to going through enormous sets, so we streamline the task for you.. This way you don’t have to sift through photos that we’re fairly certain wouldn’t make the cut.
Additionally, sometimes a photographer will weed out photos that simply don’t meet their standards. As a wedding photographer the idea of a photo I’m not thrilled with being displayed somewhere as a respresentation of my work doesn’t make me happy at all. However if I’m asked by my client to see more images of, say for example, their first dance, I will release those photos to please them, despite my dissatifaction with said images.
I know you also mentioned “missing pictures” that haven’t been produced when inquired about. Certain angles durring the ceremony, etc. The fact is, catching things like a handshake between father in law and new husband, the turning back of a veil, are all quick moments that are tricky to catch. It requires anticipating where the subject will move and when. Any number of variables can thwart a photographers most skilled efforts. It is a careful balance to get the shot while also not disrupting the ceremony. We try our best but sometimes there is nothing that can be done to catch certain things short of jumping over a pew and knocking over the bridal party. lol. However, if you’re noticing more than a small handful of requested shots that seem to be missing, this might be cause for alarm. Think back to your wedding day. Was the photographer constantly moving around and shooting photos? If so he/she probably did all they could. In the same vein, think back to your bridal party.. were they patient and cooperative durring the photos? Sometimes uncooperative bridal parties result in “missing images”.. As photographers it is certainly our job to command the photoshoot session of your day, but we generally have a specific window of time, and if members of the bridal party aren’t cooperating (ie, not standing where asked, chatting, wandering off) waiting for them takes time from photos we should be taking. If they were well behaved and your photographer just dropped the ball, it’s certainly something to take up with the owner of the company you hired.
I would suggest giving the company you worked with the benefit of the doubt until you have a conversation about these concerns, since you felt they did a good job until recently. Don’t hesitate to make your displeasure clear, and hopefully you will get reasonable explanations and a more realistic timelines moving forward.