Photographer to stay for reception? Pros and Cons

posted 8 months ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 2
1888 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2019

I wanted a photographer there the entire time. However,  will say that most of the pictures that I look back on or framed from my first marriage are not from the reception.

Post # 3
1827 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2015

Will you have your first dances etc during the first hour?  If so, you are probably fine.  We got some cute photos at the end of our night, like ones of us toasting marshmallows for smores and hugging while slow dancing and looking a bit disheveled.  But if you have getting ready, ceremony, bridal party , cake cutting, first dances, etc you are probably fine.  It might make the first hour of your reception a bit rushed though.

Post # 4
3045 posts
Sugar bee

Ginger3 :  If they are not that important to you, you could consider eliminating the “getting ready photos” and use that as additional time for the reception.

Post # 5
9688 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2016

Some of my favorite pictures are from late in the evening. Having the whole event captured was important to me. And at our wedding everyone was busy enjoying the event over taking pictures, we really didn’t see many pictures from the guests from the reception.

Post # 6
443 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: April 2019

Ginger3 :  Pros: you have professional pictures of your major reception moments (cake cutting, bouquet toss, first dances, speeches, your exit). 

Cons: you have no professional photos of your major reception moments. 

For me it’s a non negotiable, I don’t think guest photos are a substitute for the photographer. I wouldn’t consider not having them there the whole time. Photos are all you’ll have of your wedding day, I want to capture it all in quality photographs. 

I also want my guests enjoying the moment, and not looking at their phones. Ideally they will all stay in their purses/pockets lol. 

Post # 7
1371 posts
Bumble bee

From personal experience, some of my favorite photos are from the reception and later that evening. I wouldn’t have thought twice about not having full coverage, but I also didntdido a videographer beyond the ceremony so that was my only way to capture those moments. Also, I dont have a single guest photo from tha evening. Nobody had their phone that night, and everyone was too busy partying and enjoying themselves. So I would not rely on getting pictures from others. 

Post # 8
2757 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: June 2017

We had ours stay for a lot of the reception and honestly it was kind of a waste. After the cake cutting and first dance they could have gone home. I didn’t print and never look at any of the candids of people dancing at the recpeption. 

Post # 9
1256 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: March 2018 - The Venue, Barkisland, UK

Ours left about an hour after the first dance, but it wasn’t a big party crowd so they didn’t miss loads.

Post # 10
320 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: September 2018

I skipped having Getting Ready photos so that my photographer could stay longer. He still wasn’t there the whole time though (I just couldn’t afford for him to be).


For reference, he got there at 11:30am, but I started getting ready at 10am. And in the evening he left at 9pm and our reception went until 11:30pm. So I had him most of the day, but not all. 

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