(Closed) Sensitive Subject–photog in the family

posted 7 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 3
Member
1755 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

What I would I do is tell her that you want her to be able to enjoy as a guest, but that you’d welcome any candid shots she can do.  That way you’re not hurting her feelings but can have the photographer you want.  Then take one of her candids, frame it and give it a place of honor for whenever she visits.

Post # 5
Member
2161 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I would tell her that you have already booked one (you can lie if you have to) and you just want her to enjoy the day as a guest.   Tell her that you really appreciated her thinking of you and offering, but since the deposit has already been paid, you will just keep things the way they are.

Don’t mention that you like someone else’s style, just leave it with few details and really push the fact that you want her as a guest instead.

Post # 6
Member
899 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: November 1999

Yes, I agree with Cappuqcino.

I would call her on the phone (or ideally make your Fiance do it.) Tell her that it is very sweet of her to offer, but you already booked a photographer. Say that you felt more comfortable with hiring someone that was not an invited guest so they can focus on their job and she can enjoy herself. Tell her she is more than welcome to bring her equipment and take a few candid, but you don’t want her to have the pressure of shooting the entire wedding.

After that, you don’t really have to say much more. You already booked the photographer so the decision is already made.

Oh and depending how the convo goes, I would let your actual photographer know the situation just as a heads up.

Good luck!

Post # 8
Member
1110 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

We have a few photographers on our guest list… I think a couple of them felt like they were obligated to bring their best camera and take nice pictures. When one photographer friend offered to take pictures during the wedding I said that they were a guest and I didn’t want them to have to worry about working that day. Maybe you could say something like that to her? She seems a little more intense than the friend I mentioned, but ultimately she should understand better than anyone how stressed a bride can get, assuming she’s worked weddings before. Maybe tell her you booked a photographer but you’d love it if she wanted to take a few candids between between mingling and visiting with family. I don’t see any reason to mention that you don’t like her style.

You could also tell her you’d like to set up a time after the wedding to take photos with her that could maybe go on your thank you notes or christmas cards. It sounds like she just really wants to contribute, so let her, but with boundaries.

My hired photographer is having our band announce politely that she would like people to wait until AFTER the the formal pictures are taken to start taking their own pictures to prevent confusion on what camera people should look at and trouble with lighting/flashes. This may help in your case so the aunt isn’t stepping on your photographer’s toes. Good luck!!

Post # 9
Member
1543 posts
Bumble bee

Ordinarily, I would tend to agree w/ PPs, because it sounds like a good compromise, win/win. Buuut, call it a hunch or whatever, it seems like this aunt is the type who won’t take no for an answer, and tends to overstep boundaries, all in the name of family familiarity. Even if the OP does go w/ the compromise as suggested, dear old auntie is still gonna see and be aware of the other photog, and her feelings will then be more hurt. Plus, giving her an inch, and she’ll take a mile w/ the candid shots, may make her think that you do enjoy her style. Which, will make for more awkward moments down the road. 

My advice? Suck it up and tell her as nice as possible, that while you appreciate her talent, you’d rather go w/ a more modern feel for your photog. And sell it as just a bonus that she can now look forward to not having to work your wedding, and can be IN the pics. 

Good luck! 

Post # 10
Member
2854 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2012

Agreed. Her feelings might not be hurt. We’ve said this legitimately to some of our friends – we know a great guy who would DJ our wedding and do an awesome job, but we wanted him to enjoy it, not work.

Post # 10
Member
994 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

@Crabbabs: Totally agree.

OP — As a photog myself, I do see the value in traditional portraiture. And there are many newbies out there who break such basic rules (like, um, expose correctly? don’t put people in poses that don’t flatter? and I don’t know… focus?) that I can understand what she’s saying. That does not mean that the newer photojournalistic and/or magazine/fashion style of shooting is without value, if done right. So, your style and her style do not mesh. END OF STORY. This is YOUR wedding and you should absolutely have it captured the way you want it.

 

Post # 11
Member
7975 posts
Bumble Beekeeper

You could also mention that you’re just more comfortable keeping family and business separate, because you’ve heard some sad stories from friends (who cares if those friends are on Weddingbee? she doesn’t need to know that!) of relationships that have been hurt by mixing business with family, so you thought you’d stick with someone outside the family for the photos. This, of course, won’t work if you’ve got any other friendors for the wedding.

Post # 12
Member
2161 posts
Buzzing bee
  • Wedding: July 2011

I really wouldn’t encourage her to bring any equipment.  You don’t want her stepping on any toes.  My pro photographer’s contract stated that he was the only photographer, but guests could take candid shots if they didn’t interfere with his work.

Post # 13
Member
584 posts
Busy bee

I agree that the best way to cushion the blow is to say that your reason for not choosing her is you don’t want to have friends or family as vendors–you’d much rather them enjoy the wedding as a guest. Sometimes things can get a little sticky with friendors (as you’ve already figured out!). Your special day will be a lot more enjoyable if you can relax because your pictures are going to turn out great and if you aren’t having to humor a relative in any way!

Post # 15
Member
1066 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: September 2011

Definitely focus on wanting her to enjoy the wedding as a guest!!!  This seems easy to me.  There is no reason to hurt her feelings, and since your photog is already booked, she can’t push the issue anyway.

The only thing I can see maybe happening, is her suggesting if she can do your engagement shoot or other photos then, but just tell her it was already included in your package.

She’s an aunt, close family member, so it makes sense that she should sit back and enjoy the wedding and even BE in some of the photos.

I had a similar situation, only worse, because it’s a coworker friend of mine (not invited to the wedding).  He shot my brothers wedding the previous year, so he assumed he would be shooting my wedding…. he actually approached me one day (i guess wondering why I hadn’t asked him yet), and asked me when my date was and “dont I need a photographer??!!”… thats when I had to break the news.. awkward.

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