By Karen Clark
Photography can be a BIG line-item cost for your budget. So, the question is this: Is it worth it? The short answer is yes. Photography is the ideal way to capture the special moments and details of the day. After you’ve obsessed over flowers, linen colors, the design of the cake and your napkin folds, you want to be able to see how everything looks. You’d be surprised how quickly your wedding day passes by and how many details you simply don’t see. A great photographer can capture all of those memories for you.
How do you pick the right photographer? Search wedding magazines and websites for photographers that you like. Examine the styles of different photographers and figure out what you like most. Do you like the fact that one photographer shoots mostly in black & white? Do you like the fact that one manages to capture the sentimental details, like a tear rolling down your father’s cheek? Or do you want someone who offers over-the-top albums?
Many people get shocked when they start shopping wedding photographers. Some photographers start their fees at $1500 and go up as high as $10,000. As a result, many brides are tempted to pay a friend or family member a couple of hundred dollars to bring their digital camera to the church. Yes, this is a cost-effective way to get wedding photos. HOWEVER….remember that this is one of the most important days of your life and probably one of the biggest parties you will ever throw. It’s important to have a professional capture the details of the day. A professional has tons of equipment to balance light and shadow. They often have assistants who can take photos at a different part of the event while the main photographer is shooting something else. They have multiple cameras and backup batteries. They have everything they need to react to emergencies, dark ceremony locations, reception locations that are too bright and zillions of other scenarios that might pop up.
Your family member who has a camera from Best Buy doesn’t have all of the equipment to make your photos to look the best that they possibly can. The flash on their point and shoot digital camera isn’t going to generate enough light to show off your intricate wedding day makeup.
I’ve seen so many brides spend $2000 or $3000 on wedding limos and $300 on wedding photography. I have yet to see a bride who wasn’t disappointed with the end results of the pictures. I always here things like, “They didn’t get a full-length photo of me in my dress,” or “Why didn’t they get a picture of me and my 95-year old grandmother?”
Again, this is one of the biggest days of your life. You hire professionals to handle other aspects of your wedding. Why wouldn’t you hire a professional to capture the images from your wedding day? Your memory will fade, but great photos will last a lifetime. It’s worth it to you to invest in the product that will last forever. You can’t get a do-over on your wedding day if your photographer misses your first kiss or the moment when you jump the broom. Why take the risk? I always suggest to brides that they spend as much as they can afford to on hiring someone who can ensure that the special moments from the day are captured.