(Closed) photography freak out!

posted 7 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
Member
1405 posts
Bumble bee

Holy crap 6K would of bought a top photographer in LA!  I thought people went to Bella that were on budgets because it was cheap?  I would walk away, for 4800 you could still get a really good photographer / package who’s work you really love.  In the end it won’t cost you any more, just try and work with what you have left.

Post # 4
Member
1679 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Get the guy on the phone and get the name of your photog in writing. 

 Essentially, you go with this company and it sounds like THEY pick your photog based on what they think you should get? They might say they “match” you, but it sounds like they’re a middle man and they take a cut to refer any photog they can get to cover your wedding.

Post # 5
Member
1498 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

I would try to get out of your contract, eat the losses if you have to.  My sister used Bella and her pictures were not good and they spent a lot.

My photog is costing $5000 and we LOVE her, so you should definitely be able to find a photog for around that price that you love as well.

You will regret it forever if your pictures are not good.

Post # 6
Member
1679 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

Check out this entry I saw in another thread about Bella.

 

“Bella is a huge national wedding photography company that is known to “match” their clients with a perfect photographer. Most of the photogs are actually newbies and don’t get paid very well. They don’t “work” for bella as they are independent contractors with them. After signing a contract with them Brides have little choice in who actually shows up to shoot their wedding. Some have been lucky and get really talented nice photographers but for the most part they are unhappy. You can read thousands of reviews on them, here, weddingwire, yelp, etc.”

 

This is sort of what it sounded like.  It stinks to eat over $1000, but it might be worth it in light of the product you might end up with.  For the $5,000 balance you would have spent, you could probably get a fantastic photog from your area.

Post # 7
Member
4771 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

wow I’ve never heard of a service like that, sounds like a terrible idea.  Donno why you would ever go to an agency like that for a photog or anything really!  sorry, get one on your own.

Post # 8
Member
1679 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I found a fascinating thread on a forum for professional photogs.  Some of them are paid $500-600 to shoot a wedding for Bella.  They are told to shoot 1000+ images and they are given the settings they are to use for their shots.  The photog isn’t supposed to use their professional judgement at all!

 

What’s more, the photog doesn’t get to do any processing!  They are instructed to send their discs back to Bella and Bella does some blanket fixing on their end, but nothing like what a photog would do.  Basically, instead of having a photog carefully shoot images and then edit them, Bella has them shoot a thousand images with all these different settings, hoping they get some good shots.

 

This is exactly how I shot film in the 90s, when I was a college student trying to figure out photography.  I took a shot a dozen times with different settings and hoped that I got one useable image.  That is not how a professional should be told to work.

Post # 10
Member
62 posts
Worker bee

Are you still in contact with the friend of yours from Bella at all (ex CEO)? Or anyone from Bella other then the photog that you dislike? I am just curious if there is anyway to say that your styles did not mesh, and that you would like to be paired with someone new.

The trick would be to find someone new, and make sure you like their work now, so that you have at least a little time before you would need to decide to cancel your contract and keep looking or not.

I don’t have any experience dealing with them though…Sorry I’m not more help. I do know a few photogs in L.A., but your wedding is approaching fast! I could PM you their names if you’d like.

Post # 12
Member
1498 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: August 2011

You’re gonna have to sacrifice the videography to get a reasonable price, but the package I have with my photographer includes 2 photogs, all day coverage, album, the rights to all images, and proofs of all pictures.

http://www.carolineghetes.com/

I found her through wpja.com and she has been featured on wedding sites like stylemepretty… I’m sure you can find someone good for a reasonable price.

Post # 15
Member
1115 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: April 2010

Oh, man. That sucks! I also had a photography freak out right before my wedding. (As in the guy emailed me to tell me he realized a week and a half before our wedding that he was double-booked for our date.)

I 2nd the WPJA. I found my emergency photographer, Patrick Chai, through there. He filled in at the last minute and was wonderful to work with. His 2nd shooter, Christiane Ingenthron, is amazing. They are both super talented, honest, and quick. I got my pictures back 2 weeks later.

Here’s the link to his WPJA page:

http://www.wpja.com/wedding-photojournalism/5417-southern-california-weddings/photographer-patrick-chai.html

I agree with @mcnetn3 though…you may have to forego videography  to get into your price range with what’s left of your photography budget.

Good luck!

Post # 16
Member
7 posts
Newbee
  • Wedding: June 2012

I am a wedding photographer who has done some work with Bella as well.  I suggest, for $6000 you could look anywhere!  Some smaller towns, how more low budget photographers.  You can fly them to LA, all expenses paid, and have great photos for half the cost!  I am in Ohio, and very picky about photographers for my wedding as well.  I found some great photographers for $2500-$4000, which includes an engagement session and CD of all images.  I suggest going for an option like that.  

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