Post # 1
I am really over this whole business of choosing a photographer. I have agonized over it. My fiancé literally thinks we should look for the absolute cheapest photographer we can find and go with him/her. I am definitely willing to splurge on photography and cut my budget in other areas, but I am so torn. The photographers whose photos cause me to have an emotional reaction also have prices that cause my eyes to pop out of my head. However, I don’t know if this is just because I haven’t adjusted my expectations (as many ladies have noted before on these boards, some online budget breakdowns seem not to allocate enough for photography) or if these photographers really are overly expensive. I know that photography rates differ in different areas, but would anyone mind sharing what you are spending (and the average rates in your area), what’s included in your package, and/or what percentage of your budget is allocated for photography? Also, what’s the most you think you would pay for photography? Was choosing a photographer stressful for anyone else?
Disclaimer: I have posted about wedding photography costs before…this is just a never-ending saga in my planning process! Gah! 🙁
Post # 3
I’m in Kansas City, so there are photographers all over the place price wise. And since I’m getting married in Nebraska, they tend to be much cheaper. I originally budgeted $2500 for a photographer, but when a surprise gift was given to me, I was able to get my dream photographer, who is just over $5000. I know it’s a lot (I’m still a little freaked out by thinking where else I could have spent that money), but I just love her work, and I am so excited. After all, the photos are the only thing you have after, so I think if you are able to invest the money, go for it!
Post # 4
we used a friendor who quoted us a price of $600 for all day coverage. He ended up being pretty crap and didnt even stay till the end of the wedding. But once I got over it I did a great job of editing them myself since I do a little photography myself and ordered a nice album from adorama. Personally I could never justifyt spending anything over 1000 for pictures. Pictures are very important but not worth that much plust the one thing I hate about a lot of professional photogs is how htye have their big logo in every picture, I find it distracting to have a logo in the picture.
Post # 5
@bells: That logo is their watermark, and often you get a print release with your coverage so you don’t have it on the real, edited pics. Just one more thing to look for with photographer packages.
Post # 6
My budget was $1000 but if I’d had a bigger budget I think I could have been comfortable spending up to $3000 for a great photographer and a good package. More than that and I think it gets a little ridiculous with both what you get and what you expect (12 hours, huge books, 3 shooters, all kinds of fancy crap)
Post # 7
@travelerkate: It’s so great to be able to go with a photographer whose work you absolutely love! Did your fiancé object?
@bells: If you could go back, do you think you would have paid a little more for peace of mind (or would it not be worth it to you since you were able to edit the pics yourself)?
Post # 8
@kala_way: If you don’t mind me asking, what would have been a good package in your eyes (i.e., the coverage, disc of photos, etc.)?
Post # 9
@JuneBride2012: Well in my opinion the most important thing is the photographer b/c I figure why pay ALL this money on everything else and cut corners in photography…I want to be able to look back and feel all the same emotions and excitement I felt on the day of. So our photographer is $5000 and it took my fiancee a while to wrap his mind around that but when I showed him how serious I was about it he agreed. I just compared it to cheaper photographers in the area.
The package includes:
12 hrs of covereage, a 2nd photographer, engagement session, 20 page 10×10 guestbook, ONE 40 pg flush mount album, TWO 40 page flush mount parent albums, a web gallery, and a DVD with the high res images.
Post # 10
Chosing a photographer was SUPER stressful for me. The first photographer i fell in love with was awesome, until she sent me her prices….packages started at $5,000 and went up to $13,000!!! $13,000?! Really?! I was floored. Plus she was damn near impossible to get ahold of. We wound up going with someone else (needless to say), we’re paying around $3,200 for 8hr of coverage (2 photogs), 3 albums and an e-photo session, CD of completed work and unlimited number of images and travel expenses (she’s based where we live not where the wedding is so she’s traveling like 250 miles). I’m not sure what the average is per se, but I get the sense that this is a bit above average. To me it was worth it not only bc I really like her work, but also bc I just wanted to be done with the whole process.
Post # 10
I spent about $5,000 on my photographer. I didn’t have a problem picking her because I’ve seen her work for two years. Hands down, she was going to do my wedding. I met with her before I was even engaged to guarantee a spot for the summer 🙂 The only problem was the price… which I had to convince my mom was worth it. She gave in because she knew I could effectively move my budget around the photographer’s fees. It turned out perfect!!!
Post # 11
@JuneBride2012: Well, I think it depends on your wedding. Ours was really informal and quick–I didn’t want a fancy blow out so our photographer was only there for 4 hours. The timing was absolutely perfect for us, her time ended just as we were driving away 🙂 But I understand some people have longer weddings and need more coverage.
Again because of our wedding we really didn’t require a second shooter, but in some cases I can see how that would be really awesome to have.
I didn’t want a book at all but again in a good package I think that would be a nice option.
We didn’t do e-pics or trash the dress or anything other than our 4 hours day of, but again I think if one of those are offered it’s a nice thing to have.
We didn’t do a first look or pictures before but again if you want that and have a great venue I can see it being a real plus to have a great creative photographer who can get you some interesting and fun shots without having to hold up your guests.
So basically, I think those sort of things can definitely be a part of a great package but whether they are right for you and your wedding is always another issue. If there’s something you do or don’t want that isn’t or is offered, try and negotiate. I doubt a photographer wants to spend time on something you don’t even want, just make sure you’re reasonable and fair.
Post # 12
I’m with you. The one “splurge” I would really like is to have a good photographer for the whole day. That’s bucks. Lots of them.
(And on a completely different note, scrolling past, I first read the thread title as “What’s the most you would pay for wedding pornography?” 😀 )
Post # 13
With our total wedding budget of $20k, I was only comfortable spending $5k on photography. But if our total budget was higher, I would have been fine spending more to get a better package from our photographer.
Post # 14
@HisWifey2012: I want to be able to look back and feel all the same emotions and excitement I felt on the day of.
I totally agree with this. I hope my fiancé comes around.
@littlegraykitten: LOL – I feel your pain! I’m glad you found someone else whose work you really like, though. 🙂
@kperry3: Yay! I’m glad it turned out so well.
@kala_way: What you said makes total sense. And it’s awesome that the timing was so perfect with the photography for your wedding!
@Elvis: Totally. And the “wedding pornography” was a total LOL moment for me. 😉
@Leprechaun: Interesting! I was wondering if people were more concerned with actual cost or percentage of budget. It seems like percentage played more of a part for you.
Post # 15
- Wedding: October 2011 - Bed & Breakfast
We’re currently paying $2170 for an e-session, 6 hours of wedding day coverage, a day-after shoot, dvds with all high res images, and full useage/printing rights.We’re thinking of adding 2 more hours of wedding day coverage to capture all of the toasts and the post-dinner cigar bar fun, which will add $200 to our cost.