Post # 1
There’s a discussion going on right now in a professional wedding photographers’ forum about when female photographers should tell their clients that they are pregnant. There have been a lot of opinions, but I care much more about what brides think, since it’s their wedding that would be affected. So you guys tell me – when would you want to know, and how would you react? Would you stick with them, and hope it didn’t affect you, or would you ask for a refund and find someone else? How close to the due date is “too close for comfort” for you?
Post # 3
I really don’t see why it would be ANY of my business, as a client. Unless a weird side-effect of pregnancy is not being able to take good pictures…. 😉
It’s not like she would be in danger of going into labor during the wedding… what female photographer in her right mind would agree to shoot that close to her due date? There are tons of professional women who get pregnant and continue working… why is this any different?
Post # 4
Meladoug – One side effect of pregnancy is having a baby. And that can happen at any time, not just on the due date the doctor gives you. Meaning that just because your photographer is due four weeks after your wedding date doesn’t mean she won’t be in labor as you’re walking down the aisle.
Another side effect is bedrest. I know many, many women who were put on bedrest early on, some as early as 18-20 weeks. These women were expecting to be able to work until their last few weeks of pregnancy, and found themselves suddenly unable to fulfill their commitments to their clients with very little notice.
Another side of effect is miscarriage. Many miscarriages require surgery, and there is virtually no way to predict when and if that will happen. One photographer chimed in on the other board to say that she had a miscarriage on a Friday night and had to go into surgery, and when it was over she had to shoot a wedding four hours later. Although she was a trooper, I think it’s fair to say that she was probably heartbroken and in so much pain that there was no way she could give her clients 100% that day.
The fact is, there are many risks associated with hiring a pregnant woman to shoot your wedding, and many of them involve your photographer calling you up and saying “Sorry, I won’t be shooting your wedding!” with very little notice – maybe a few weeks, at best. Some brides don’t care, some brides do. I’m not saying it’s bad to hire one – I’m just trying to guage how brides feel about their photographers getting pregnant and how it affects them.
Post # 4
I think I’d want to know if she was going to be due anywhere near my wedding because I’d be paranoid she’d go into labor and not be able to shoot my wedding…and then where would I be? Ya know. But she would obviously know this pretty far in advance and I’d hope would be considerate enough to be like “Hey, I’m due March 8 and your wedding is March 3” so I could decide if I was comfortable with that or not.
Post # 5
This is really interesting, and I never really thought about it before. I would think that if I was a photographer and I was pregnant, I would definitely want to tell my clients up front or not take any more clients for a while because I would feel so bad if I wrecked their day because I couldn’t be there.
Post # 6
In my contract there is a part saying that should she for any reason not be able to be at my wedding another incredible photographer would take her place. She isn’t pregnant. But having that in the contract is good enough for me.
Post # 7
Interesting topic – I voted only if it’s in the last month but good points were made about bedrest and such.
Considering that, I would considere these options –
- don’t book any weddings the last 2-3 months of the pregnancy and focus more on engagement/senior/family etc.
- If you do weddings later during the pregnancy, have an assistant or backup photographer who could step in if needed (and let clients view their work or be aware of that fact)
- Obviously every pregnancy is different, but women who know they are higher-risk should take more precautions than the mom of 2 going on three who has never had a problem.
Very interesting though! My photographer is male but it does make me wonder how I’d feel about having a pregnant photographer.
Post # 8
@stacycreeves: I guess I was assuming that, as reputable photographer, she would have a contract in place that specifically detailed a backup plan, in case she could not shoot the wedding. My photographer’s contract states that he will either give me a full refund or have another photographer (which we agreed on in advance) shoot the wedding, my choice, in the case he cannot work that day. I understand that life happens and you can’t plan for everything (especially conerning pregnancy), so I think the best thing a bride can do is make sure she has a good contract and uses a little common sense.
Post # 9
And she could be in a car wreck the day of the wedding
Contract virulent stomach flu
Have a sick or injured child or spouse
Death in her family
there are lots of things that could impact her ability to be at my wedding – I would hope that she would have a contact that she could use as an alternate photographer if any pregnancy complications arose, such as having a baby.
Otherwise it really is not my business
Post # 10
I think it’s a given that any photographer should have a backup plan in place, of course. But if there’s a good chance the photographer would have to use that backup plan, would you want to know in advance? Or would you rather just not stress about it, and be surprised when and if it happens?
Post # 11
@stacycreeves: I think I’d want to know ahead of time. My cousin is my photographer so it’s a little different for me, but I know in all of her contracts she has a backup photographer who is excellent but doesn’t do it full time. The backup is her best friend and her pictures are *almost* as good as the one I hired, but of course, if I knew ahead of time I could look around and see if I could find someone else. Her contract is written so that if something happens and she isn’t able to do the photography you can break the contract with no penalty and she gives you your deposit back.
ETA: Just re-read that and realized it wasn’t very well written, but I’ve hit my 3 o’clock Monday slump so just pretend it makes sense. lol
Post # 12
I was in this exact situation. My photographer emailed me about 2 months before my wedding to let us know that she was pregnant with their second child. She was 5 or 6 months pregnant (I don’t remember exactly) at our July wedding and she and her huge baby bump didn’t slow down one bit! I wouldn’t have changed a thing and I thought nothing but excitment for her and her husband (who is her second-shooter/partner too!) when I got that email.
There was a backup plan in our contract so if anything where to go unexpected with the pregnancy, our photography would be covered. I don’t see the risks of bedrest, miscarriage, early labor, etc as any different from the risks that your photographer will get in a major car accident, get stomach flu, etc. Sometimes life happens and so long as there is a plan for it, you take things as they come!
Post # 13
I’m 8 mo prego at the moment due date 6/24 and this is how we handled/handling it. My husband and I work as a two photog team on every wedding:
- I waited until we were 14 weeks to let our April/May/June clients only our closest friends and immediate family knew and didn’t want to have to explain a miscarriage if we were put in that situation. I had a good friend who told her clients to soon and miscarried and it was so much harder for them to have to go and tell everyone.
- I was so so so sick with morning sickness in my first trimester, but still shot 6 weddings like that and not one of my couples noticed and they all LOVED their photos.
- We also wanted to personally call our April/May/June weddings and let them know rather then finding out via facebook/blog twitter. It was important for us to let them know we had their interest at heart and were working on backup plans.
- April/early May weddings I have an assistant to carry all my gear, move lights, make sure I’m drinking enough water etc. She rocks!
- Late may/June weddings we are adding a third shooter. Basically I am going to be there to cover my signature shots and our third shooter is going to cover all the stuff that takes running and gunning. They are also a full time seasoned pros, so if I happen to go on BR or labor early they will take my place.
- June 18th is our last wedding and we passed along all our July early Aug inquires as soon as we found out about the pregnancy. We didn’t have those months booked before we found out. If she comes on time then I will have 6 weeks before our next wedding to recover learn about being a mommy.
Post # 14
I am a photographer, and recently found out i am pregnant, but i am only 9 weeks, so i have not told any of my clients yet. I am planning on letting all of them know, expecially the ones that i am covering weddings for in Aug/Sept. I am not booking anything after October 20th, as my due date is December 5. I might do family picutres, baby, engagements, but i am not taking any big project. If i find out that i am not able to attend the wededdings i have booked, i have it in my contract that i will have another phoographer in my place capture the wedding.