- 5 years ago
- Wedding: Saint Domingue
[content moderated for snark/personal attack]
[content moderated for snark/personal attack]
Typically, brides don’t want their photographers/videographers/DJs to disapear for 30 minutes to an hour to eat. If your employer stated that you had to sit at your desk for 8 hours streight and could not leave your desk to eat, I’m sure that you would be angry. That basically what you are asking your vendors to do if you don’t feed them.
What really sent home how important it is to feed your vendors is a story that my DJ told me. He owns his own company, and hires about 3 other DJs and sometimes subcontracts out (with the bride and groom permision) because he has extra equipment. One day he had 4 weddings, which he helped 4 other DJs set up for, and a demanding bride who insisted he be at her site 5 hours before he needed to be. By the time dinner was served, he was starving. He had a play list for dinner, and it wasn’t close to time for speaches. One of the three bartenders was a DJ he sometimes subcontracted with, and he asked him to just make sure no one touched his equipment while he crossed the street to grab McDonalds. The bride caught him at the door and had a royal fit. He asked if maybe the venue could feed him and she had another fit. By the time he left and got midnight McDonalds, he hadn’t eaten in 12 hours.
most definitely standard practice. We are providing for our 2 photographers and the dj. The photographers will be there for 10 hours. It’s the least I could do.
I know that you’re feeling miffed about having to pay for their meals, but doing photo/video for a wedding isn’t like a typical 9 to 5 desk job. They have to be actively doing their job for like every minute of those 8-10 hrs that you’ve hired them, so they can capture all the moments of your wedding prep, wedding celebration, etc. They can’t spare an hour to go off site for a meal (assuming your wedding isn’t somewhere isolated) and they can’t do so anyway since you’re paying them for X number of hours to work. They can’t stick their sandwich in a fridge somewhere because it would belong to the caterer and there isn’t room if they have to store food to cook for 100+ guests. Anyway, I’d just try to be a little more understanding and accept feeding them as part of your wedding costs.
Yes it’s standard practice. I work 13 hours and my employer doesn’t pay for my food – however I have a fridge, microwave, etc and time to have a break.
Seat your vendors at one table so they get the same vendor meal (usually cheaper) and make sure they have a good view so they can capture everything easily!
Wow. I guess I need to give full disclaimer about everything before I write on these boards, I don’t think I implied at all that you ladies thought these things, and I wasn’t trying to throw shade at you ladies or be snarky. So please read this all through with a grain of salt, as these things have nothing to do with “what I’m implying about you”.
I honestly was stating the facts and “questions” as I did because my brother is a photographer / videographer, and a good friend of mine is in the industry as well. I got into those specifics because believe it or not, they have been put through some of the craziness where them being able to eat was a hot debate. They have lots of stories about how they were treated: being put into a small broom closet to eat a bowl of soup on their lap, being given a bun and juice and told not to be seen eating around the guests. In the case where they don’t get fed, they can’t leave the venue to go buy food. I’m not trying to be snarky but also imagine if they go to their car to bring out a cooler for food, to unpack everything at the dining table (if they’re lucky to get seated at a table, maybe the broom closet, maybe the back office). At times when my bro did leave to go to his car to get some food (when he first started in the biz), it took 15 minutes (elevator down, walk through the parkade, etc). And during that time, even though he left his assistant shooter there, the bride was pissed that he even dare left the venue for that long. Seems crazy, right? During some of those times, he ended up eating warm melted granola bars from his pocket. So from what I know, packing a lunch isn’t the most convenient and going around the corner for a burger / sandwich isn’t always an option. I’ve also been at weddings where the photog worked nonstop, and I’m pretty certain they just snacked on whatever was in their pockets.
And while they’re eating, any good photographer will eat but work at the same time too – if they see something going on that’s worthy of shooting pictures, or maybe an intimate moment, etc, they will jump up from their seat to make sure its captured (hence why the videographer / photog for my wedding had requested to sit a table near us). If they are a good photog, I don’t think they’d sit through for an hour without staying alert on whats going on around the room. My venue was going to charge me $35 for a vendor meal of a green salad, or just pay for the equivelant meal ($100) – I know, it’s robbery. I was tempted to go with the green salad, but I would go SO hungry if it were me. If it were my brother or friend, I would prefer that they have more of a filling meal, so I decided to just go with it and give all my vendors $100 meals. Having to deal with an expensive wedding and trying to cut out meal costs is never fun, but its unfortunate that sometimes these people definitely do get treated as less than human and worked out of the food costs.
While these bad applies don’t group ALL wedding couples in the same boat (and in fact, I think most were good to work with), there are definitely people who do these things, which is why its almost a standard for these vendors to write it into their contract (and maybe not for all photogs).
For what it’s worth, I didn’t expect this to become some kind of hot topic bitchy debate. It was a sincere question that I had no idea about – I’m entitled to my opinion and everyone else is entitled to theirs. Can we not ATTACK each other over this? Of course I will give my videographers and photographers a meal if it’s in their contract – it doesn’t mean that I have to agree with the principle. When I met with my wedding co-ordinator at the venue (and among the countless emails exchanged with her) she never once mentioned anything in terms of the videogs/photogs having a meal.
So people CHILL THE FUCK OUT!
A little update, I’ve just heard back from my Mother-In-Law who contacted our venue re this whole issue. They offer a substantial but cheap meal (sandwiches and hot potato wedges) to the vendors in another area away from the main guest area (presumably the separate bar area) which is perfectly reasonable. I just wish they had told me at the outset so I could have avoided all the above drama!
The reason I got my back up initially was because I thought that they thought they were asking to be sat down with our guests having the same (very expensive) meal as them, but this is not the case and thank you to those who also reiterated this earlier 🙂
Here’s my take. Yes, I work 8 hours a day and I get a lunch break to go out and get food when I want. If I’m expected to attend a meeting during lunch and work through it, my company provides lunch.
Same with my photographers. Sure, they could have left for an hour to go get food, but wouldn’t you rather them stay and eat near you? Where they can even take a break in their meal if they see something great going on that needs to be captured?
Our vendor meals were super cheap and our caterer took care of them. I’m not even sure what they ended up getting but our photographer said it was delicious! Not only are they people, but they are also people who have a huge impact on your day… I’d say it’s in everyone’s best interest to keep them happy lol.
Totally normal… Our DJ requested a meal in their contract which is totally fine. And we will have a photographer who will be taking photos for 12 hours straight, so we will be providing a meal for him too!
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