(Closed) The pros and cons of hiring a friend (long)

posted 5 years ago in Photos/Videos
  • poll: Would you ask her to shoot the big day?

    Sure! It's the polite thing to do, and could be mutually beneficial. She can always say no.

    No! There are far too many red flags/ reasons not to. Better safe than sorry

    I'd do something else (let us know in the comments)

    Unsure: need more info

  • Post # 2
    914 posts
    Busy bee

    View original reply
    anonymoose1 :  I really wouldn’t hire her. My brother in law is a Cantor (he’s Jewish clergy) and his friends have asked him time and time again to marry them, and he says no. When you’re ‘working’ at your friend’s wedding, you don’t get to relax or have fun, drink, or party. You’re on the clock. 

    Unless she offers, I’d look for a professional (or semi-professional) photographer. 

    Post # 3
    1052 posts
    Bumble bee
    • Wedding: October 2016

    Don’t hire the friend! DO NOT HIRE THE FRIEND!

    I made this mistake with my custom wedding dress. Guess what happened? The dress sucked. I had to tell this friend that I would not be wearing it. It wouldn’t have been hard with a stranger, but with a friend it was stressful. Don’t put yourself in that scenario.

    Post # 4
    9439 posts
    Buzzing Beekeeper
    • Wedding: August 2016

    Nope. I didn’t want to hire any friends/family as vendors for our wedding. My brother’s Fiance is a photographer who has a fair bit of experience shooting weddings. We didn’t ask her because we wanted her to be able to enjoy the day and we didn’t want personal dynamics to become a factor with our vendors. It’s so much easier to tell a professional that you aren’t happy with his/her work, to make changes, to negotiate because there’s no personal relationship at stake with anything.

    I also wouldn’t be comfortable hiring this particular individual because of the red flags you listed. Photography was a top priority for us and I wouldn’t have hired someone I couldn’t fully trust.

    Post # 5
    3046 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2017 - Poppy Ridge Golf Course

    I wouldn’t do it. As a general rule I’m against mixing business with friends. How is it rude not to ask her first? She’s not a well established professional and I’m sure she’s aware of this. Good luck with the decision but out of all things photography is on my somewhat important list. I’d rather feel confident about that choice.

    Post # 6
    2463 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: May 2015 - St Peter\'s Church, East Maitland, and Bella Vista, Newcastle

    Friendors are never a good idea.  If you hire her, and then end up hating the pictures, it’s going to have a major impact on the relationship down the track. I did have two friendors but neither was particularly close – not invited to the wedding – and they were for less important details (invitations and cake – if I’d hated the invitations I could easily have got other ones, and if the cake hadn’t looked right I wouldn’t have cared too much – I knew it would taste good regardless).  I think you’re right in that it’s rude to ask your guests to work – let them enjoy the day as guests.

    Post # 7
    3848 posts
    Honey bee
    • Wedding: June 2014

    View original reply
    anonymoose1 :   Do not hire the friend.  You will be far better served by someone who has experience photgraphing many weddings.   You will be happier knowing you are working with someone fully able to do the job, not someone learning on the fly.

    Post # 8
    439 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: September 2016

    Do not mix business with personal life. Let her enjoy being a guest at the wedding rather than a vendor. I had a friend who used to be in photography. She had mentioned she would like to do our wedding. At first, I was for it because she was my friend and wasn’t going to charge me much, if anything as a present to me (I was still going to pay her a reasonable rate). As time progressed, things got a littly iffy. She was having eye issues, kept telling me she hoped she would finish taking pictures early in the evening so she could get drunk and party, was worried that our other mutual friend would not be able to help her the day of the wedding, and she allowed her 21 year old son help to edit her photos. He was good with photoshop, but he liked to joke around. He enhanced the size of my sister’s breasts in her senior photos and he cropped a bucket of KFC fried chicken in an African American couple’s bouquet that they were looking down at. Now, none of these jokes were sent out as a final product, but I knew about it and would not like my photos messed with in that manner. With all of the negatives adding up, I decided to use someone else. Needless to say, my friend was upset and that friendship has ended.

    Having a vendor that you have no personal relationship with is the best route to go. That way, you aren’t afraid to say something if things don’t go according to the contract. Trust me, there will be less drama and you don’t have to worry about jeopardizing a friendship because of a business contract.

    Post # 9
    2979 posts
    Sugar bee
    • Wedding: September 2017

    Do not hire her! It could literally ruin your H+BM friendship if something goes wrong. If this was a fringe friend, then I might be closer to the fence (probably still not on it lol). But this is a very good friend’s wife. Stay far far away. What if she messes up? What if you get 0 photos of your wedding becasue of this girl? How is your H going to itneract with them after that? Just…don’t.

    Use the ‘we want her to enjoy herself’ excuse if that’s all he likes. She won’t barely get to eat or dance, because she’ll be taking photos. She wont get to spend any time with you, her friends, or her husband because she’ll be working. etc etc.

    Post # 10
    876 posts
    Busy bee
    • Wedding: December 2016

    If you feel the need to hire her for anything, hire her to do engagement pics!

    Post # 11
    66 posts
    Worker bee
    • Wedding: August 2017

    Go with a true professional and don’t hire the friend. My Fiance also has a close friend photographer, and initially suggested that we hire him for the wedding. Another friend used him and the pictures came out lovely, but I told him that if we are inviting him as a guest, we shouldn’t mix the two and have him be a paid vendor also. I want my vendors to be there working, not mingling with mutual friends. 

    Maybe you could offer to have her photograph your rehearsal/rehearsal dinner, bridal shower, or some other wedding-related event to add to her portfolio, but leave the wedding to a seasoned pro you fully trust. You can tell her that you want her to enjoy herself as a guest and close friend, and not feel pressure to work on your special day. 

    Post # 12
    1829 posts
    Buzzing bee
    • Wedding: April 2018

    Never hire a friend for an event like this. Ever. 

    Post # 13
    342 posts
    Helper bee
    • Wedding: Rydges Hotel

    I’m not a big fan of hiring a friend. Wedding can be very stressful, and if things didn’t turn up as you wanted it can damage the relationship between you, Fiance, and this friend. 

    Like PP has mentioned, why don’t you ask her to take an engagement photo? or ask her to be involved in some other way?

    Post # 14
    37 posts

    Don’t do it. We had a friend shooting our reception. Big mistake.

    He was 2h late, missed the important moments, and only took a few very low quality photos.



    Post # 15
    1227 posts
    Bumble bee

    I do not recommend hiring her under any circumstances. All of the cons you list are totally valid and would make me take pause even if I didn’t inherently think that hiring friends as vendors was a bad idea. It should not be insulting to her at all and frankly it shouldn’t even come up in discussion. If it did, I would just say that you’re really looking forward to spending time with both of them socially at the wedding.

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