(Closed) Should I hire a pro photographer for my very small wedding?

posted 4 years ago in Photos/Videos
Post # 2
89 posts
Worker bee
  • Wedding: August 2015



Well it depends on how important it is to you!  Having amazing and professional photos was REALLY important to me and we are actually doing something similar in terms of a small and intimate ceremony (30 people tops).  I decided it was worth spending the money and have booked a pro!  In the end you just need to prioritize and if its not something you feel like you will regret, then opt for a non pro or family friend?! 

Post # 3
657 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

Personally, I would never have considered not having a professional photographer at our wedding regardless of size. But photos were top priority to me lol.

I think if you have a very specific outcome in mind, you might want to hire a professional.

Post # 4
6533 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2012

MissKittyBoo:  Based on this part of your post: However, I do want amazing Christmas tree shots, with twinkling lights behind us and have a picture in my head of how amazing the wedding would look, and I would hate to have blurry, dark, bad pictures to remember it all by.  

I would say that you should look into hiring a pro. You will probably not get amazing twinkle light shots in front of a tree my an amature. I guess I personally don’t understand this thought people seem to have that you have to be models or all about yourself to have a professional wedding photographer? I know many many wedding photographers, myself included, that don’t treat every wedding like it’s a magazine shoot. 😉

Post # 5
1326 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2015 - Mount Hermon

MissKittyBoo:  Good photos were so important to us, and I’m a bride on a small budget.  I think we’re going to end up with almost 1/3 of our overall budget on photos.  You say money is not an issue, so I vote go for it!

A good photographer will not be awkward.  They are very used to what they do, and know how to make you feel comfortable.  Look at all the elopments on here.  Most of them have 4 people in attendance: the bride, the groom, the officiant, and the photographer.  

I have never heard anyone regret paying a lot of money for a photgrapher, but plenty of peiople regret NOT doing it.  Good photos are, in my opinion, priceless.  

You want pictures with lights BEHIND you.  A pro photographer will be able to do that.  A family member with a point-and-shoot will not.

If you’re still worried, you could go with their smallest package.  Or just ceremony/family pictures, and then they leave.  Then you’re alone with your family for the celebration, but you still have gorgeous pictures.

Post # 6
444 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: August 2014

I had a teeny intimate wedding and hired a pro photographer because of something I read here. I’ll try and paraphrase. Basically the jist was that without lots of guests, it will just be the two of you to remember the moment you were married. With a good photographer, it’ll jog your memory and will be something you can show any kids you two have. 

Also my parents had a teeny wedding without a pro photographer, and I remember as a child, being disappointed they didn’t have pics for me to look at. 

I think you should meet with a few, find one you like, and have them go at it if you can afford it. A good one won’t make you feel awkward during your ceremony or the dinner after, but will document lovely memories being made.

Post # 7
9827 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: September 2015

Hire a pro! Regardless of the wedding size. You won’t regret it but you might very well regret it if you dont

Post # 8
1326 posts
Bumble bee
  • Wedding: February 2015 - Mount Hermon

MissKittyBoo:  Also, a photographer will not make your photos magazine style.  They’ll make them YOUR style.  Your personality will shine, and you don’t have to be a model at all.  They’ll make you look beautiful.  My Fiance is SO camera-shy and was nervous about phots, but he had a blast doing our engagement photos.  He was so comfortable with our photographer.

Post # 9
443 posts
Helper bee
  • Wedding: July 2014

I never questioned having a professional photographer, but I did NOT want to spend a ton of money on photos I figured I’d look at a few times, then maybe see them again on anniversaries, etc, once a year, if ever. BUT, I’m SO GLAD now I found a wonderful photographer (who luckily was rather reasonable on the whole), because the day was SUCH  blur, and now I have these beautiful memories. 


So in short answer… yes, I really think you should find someone to capture this day for you!

Post # 10
9551 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013

First, fancy photography is super popular these days. It seems to be the top priority for many brides and that’s just fine. But don’t let that make you feel bad about not making photography a priority. For me, the experience being surrounded by my loved ones was more important than photography and I’m glad I stuck with my instincts and didn’t spend thousands of dollars on photography that I didn’t need. 

My biggest concern about not hiring some sort of photographer would be that, if it’s only 12 of you, do you really want one of your close friends/family having to worry about taking pictures when they should be paying attention to your ceremony or enjoying their dinner? That would be my bigger concern, rather than not getting magazine quality photos.

What I would recommend is trying to find a student or a new photographer who is building their portfolio. That way you have a designated person to take pictures and your friends and family don’t have to worry about it, but it shouldn’t break the bank. And while you shouldn’t expect every shot to be amazing, I’m sure you’ll get shots to help remind you of the day and will likely get some that are really pretty and what you’re looking for. I used a pro photog who was fairly young and new to the field and I got her for all day with rights to print for $875. She was great and I love my photos! But it took a lot of searching to find her!

Post # 11
4950 posts
Honey bee
  • Wedding: December 2014

MissKittyBoo:  Yay! A date twin! 97 days!


We’re also getting married on Christmas this year at my FI’s parents house with just my parents, his parents and his siblings. We’re doing a surprise wedding, so we just have the family pastor showing up at the door and surprise we’re getting married! They don’t even know we’re engaged, so it’s going to be a total surprise.  Obviously, because it’s a surprise, we’re not going to have a photographer. Also, his family doesn’t do Christmas Trees (they are VERY Christian and Christmas trees are a pagan symbol, etc.). I was thinking of getting photos done in our outfits later on after the wedding so that we could at least have some with a tree, we will have one at our house. So you could always do post wedding photos in the same outfits if you don’t feel comfortable having a photographer at Christmas.

  • This reply was modified 3 years, 8 months ago by  SithLady.
Post # 12
317 posts
Helper bee

We are planning on having an intimate wedding as well.  Mostly because my family and friends live all over the south and his family lives around us up north, but also  because we are the types that don’t really like to be in the spotlight and would feel uncomfortable with a huge ceremony.  

That being said, professional pictures are important to me.  A lot of my family will not be able to attend a wedding so far away, so it will be nice to have beautiful pictures to share with them.  For selfish reasons too!  Its one day a lot of people do hire professional photographers and I love looking at how gorgeous the shots are and it would be nice to just have some great pictures to look back on over the years.  

Post # 13
9202 posts
Buzzing Beekeeper
  • Wedding: August 2013 - Rocky Mountains USA

YES!  In the grand scheme of things, having nice photos of your wedding will be something that you treasure far more than the $2,000 or whatever it costs to get them!!

Post # 15
6532 posts
Bee Keeper
  • Wedding: September 2013

MissKittyBoo:  Pictures are very important to me, it was one of the most important days of my life so I wanted to have quality photos. <br />I had a big wedding, but even if I didn’t, I would have hired a pro photographer. Our photographer was very inexpensive (considering the area I live in) so I had no problem paying what we did for them

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