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Choosing a Photographer: Some Thoughts


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#11 Evan Baines

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    Posted 15 June 2008 - 01:13 PM

    Quote:
    Originally Posted by msasfraz
    thanks for the info...........whats a reasonable price for destination wedding photographer.. let's say working an hour or two for rehearsal dinner, 5-6 hours wedding day, and 2-3 hours for trash the dress pictures the next day....?
    I agree with Jill that this depends a great deal on a photographer's business situation, as well as their quality and experience. Further, some photographers quote "flat rate" for destinations, while others require a fee for services plus actual travel costs (or a close estimate). If you'd like a specific price-quote, I'd be happy to provide one to you in direct correspondence.

    What is "reasonable" to one person may be ludicrous to another. I WILL say that in general the "professional" photography market is flooded with inexpensive shooters that have cut all kinds of corners with regards to tax laws, insurance, training, equipment (especially backups!), etc.

    #12 COFPhoto

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      Posted 16 June 2008 - 03:09 AM

      Quote:
      Originally Posted by Evan Baines
      I WILL say that in general the "professional" photography market is flooded with inexpensive shooters that have cut all kinds of corners with regards to tax laws, insurance, training, equipment (especially backups!), etc.
      NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO! Say it isn't so! LOL. I'd love to see a statistic on how many people have registered new businesses in the last 3-4 years for photography. It's out of control. While the lowering cost of digital cameras has certainly allowed a ton of people into the realm of photography, the really unfortunate thing is that the standards of the general public have been lowered as well. I see so many photographs posted on forums of all kind, and they're terrrible. But people always reply with "wow, great photos, these are amazing!" etc. Ugh!

      Very good point earlier about checking a Photographer's portfolio for varying conditions. Always, always remember that high sun is the worst / most difficult condition for outdoor photography. Remember it when looking for a Photographer (look for someone who has beautiful photographs taken in direct sunlight) and remember it when planning your wedding time. If you really care about great photos, don't have your ceremony at 3pm on the beach in the middle of summer!

      #13 EricaG

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        Posted 16 June 2008 - 03:20 AM

        This is a really great thread to help all the BDWer's when choosing a potential photog. When you don't deal with these things all the time, you don't think of many of the points that have been brought up!! Thank you so much for sharing some important qualities to look for in a photog!!!
        http://i141.photobuc....DSC_0038-1.jpghttp://i141.photobuc....DSC_0463-1.jpg
        My wedding review of the Grand Palladium Palace, Punta Cana, Dominican Republic
        http://bestdestinati...om/forum/t35125

        Our Professional Wedding and TTD Pictures by Photo Souvenirhttp:...

        #14 kstop

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          Posted 16 June 2008 - 05:24 PM

          Hi Guys! this was a great post, very helpful points.
          I would definitely second the notion that you should ask to see several full weddings, also more and more popular is the assistant turned photographer overnight (!). Feel free to ask your photographer how many weddings they've shot, how long they've been shooting and what their educational background is. It's even ok to ask to speak with a past client as a reference, which may be helpful. And last but not least I tell my clients that the most important thing to feel is comfortable and content with your photographer. They will be with you on your most intimate day - so choose someone that you trust and feel good about. hope this helps :)

          #15 JaimeLynne

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            Posted 16 June 2008 - 05:50 PM

            Thanks for sharing! :)

            ~ Jaime & Martin ~
            "Rain or Swine! 2-0-0-9"

            We had 24 people attend our wedding in Las Caletas, Mexico on May 24th, 2009!

            We all stayed at The Marriott in P.V., and Honeymooned at The Royal Plantation in Ochos Rios, Jamaica!


            #16 SunBride

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              Posted 16 June 2008 - 08:06 PM

              Quote:
              Originally Posted by COFPhoto
              While the lowering cost of digital cameras has certainly allowed a ton of people into the realm of photography, the really unfortunate thing is that the standards of the general public have been lowered as well. I see so many photographs posted on forums of all kind, and they're terrrible. But people always reply with "wow, great photos, these are amazing!" etc. Ugh!
              But if the bride is happy with her photos then that's all that matters! No offense, but it bugs me when photographers put eachother down like that. There is a market out there for everyone - let the brides who can't tell the difference and are on a tight budget be happy with their photos. Some people will know the difference, and they are willing to pay more. Others don't know the difference and are happy with lower quality photos and there is nothing wrong with that. I think it's great that there are such a range of quality and price out there to suit any bride's needs.

              #17 alex

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                Posted 16 June 2008 - 08:35 PM

                Quote:
                Originally Posted by SunBride
                But if the bride is happy with her photos then that's all that matters! No offense, but it bugs me when photographers put eachother down like that. There is a market out there for everyone - let the brides who can't tell the difference and are on a tight budget be happy with their photos. Some people will know the difference, and they are willing to pay more. Others don't know the difference and are happy with lower quality photos and there is nothing wrong with that. I think it's great that there are such a range of quality and price out there to suit any bride's needs.
                I couldn't agree more!

                #18 Scott C

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                  Posted 16 June 2008 - 09:20 PM

                  All good information. I think the togs that are offering information are trying to do so to be helpful. There definitely is a tog for every budget. Just be careful about choosing strictly on price because more times than not I have heard the horror stories of budget togs giving garbage photos. The beach in harsh sun can be really challenging for a photog that isnt ready for that. Then again you might find the next coming of Becker and get a diamond in the rough.

                  I would say that when looking for a wedding photog take a real close look at the style the photographer uses. Make sure it is something you LOVE and dont settle for a photographers style that you dont care for hoping that you will get something different. Your wedding day is to important to settle for photos that are going to make you cry.

                  #19 Evan Baines

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                    Posted 17 June 2008 - 12:25 AM

                    Quote:
                    Originally Posted by SunBride
                    But if the bride is happy with her photos then that's all that matters! No offense, but it bugs me when photographers put eachother down like that. There is a market out there for everyone - let the brides who can't tell the difference and are on a tight budget be happy with their photos. Some people will know the difference, and they are willing to pay more. Others don't know the difference and are happy with lower quality photos and there is nothing wrong with that. I think it's great that there are such a range of quality and price out there to suit any bride's needs.
                    I can't speak for the other photographers on here, but I agree that there are markets and price-points out there for many different skill levels. Every bride is NOT looking to spend thousands on wedding photography, and every photographer isn't Yervant. I actually spend a significant portion of my time mentoring young photographers in the "budget" end of the spectrum, trying to help them with their technique and their business practices: believe me I don't "have it in" for the up-and-comer.

                    However, just because a photographer isn't charging an arm-and-a-leg does not obviate him/her from being a responsible business person. In my previous post, I didn't denigrate inexperienced or less "fancy" photographers on the basis of their art, but I did suggest that its unacceptable for a small "business" to evade taxes, shirk insurance responsibilities, and most of all to contract to chronicle one of the most important days of a person's life without adequate backup to ensure that the job will actually get done. This is especially true given the amazingly inexpensive prices that quality used DSLRs and equipment can command on the 'net. There's really no excuse for a photographer to bring one camera to a wedding, but surprisingly, many do.

                    I suppose that what I'm trying to say is that its totally reasonable for a bride on a budget, or a bride for whom photography is not a paramount priority to seek out a less expensive photographer. However, ANY bride contracting significant money to ensure that her day is photographed professionally deserves to know in advance what quality she can expect, and deserves the piece of mind of knowing that her professional photographer has made reasonable preparations for untoward contingencies. These issues of personal & professional responsibility are even more crucial for the destination wedding customer to assess, as the couple may be making their selection at-a-distance with someone that they might not meet until their wedding or just prior.

                    #20 COFPhoto

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                      Posted 17 June 2008 - 12:43 AM

                      Quote:
                      Originally Posted by SunBride
                      But if the bride is happy with her photos then that's all that matters! No offense, but it bugs me when photographers put eachother down like that.

                      Absolutely, a Bride's happiness with her own photos is without a doubt the single most important thing - obviously. And if someone hires a Photographer solely based on price because they can't afford a better Photographer, then they simply can't afford it.

                      No offense taken, but I wasn't putting anyone down. I'm just stating that based on the advancement of digital cameras and the accessability of those cameras, I think the bar has been lowered significantly when it comes to the overall quality of "professional" photography in general. That goes for weddings as well as portraits.




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