Wednesday, 26 March 2014

An email I sent to some wedding prospects - Guide to choosing your photographer

I paid to list my services with a web company specializing in weddings, every so often I receive inquiries regarding wedding photography and many start with, 'We are on a tight budget' on many occasion I have dropped price to help people out only to find on their day they have booked the largest venue you can imagine, have stilt walkers, magicians, sweetie trollies, £20K worth of fireworks, 15 bridesmaids, free bar all night and catering for 300 people! you can imagine how this makes me feel if I have offered them a genuine discount to help out as their budget is so tight.

The latest set of leads I received was today and I thought you know what a little information goes a long way so I thought I would share my reply on here.

Hi there

I expect everyone is emailing you offering amazing deals and you are overcome by choice so I thought I would email you with a guide so when you have looked at everyone if you have any doubt you can then come back to me for a quote if you need to, however I am not a photographer to play bidding games with other ‘photographers’ I am not the cheapest but I know I am not the most expensive as well, but I am full time and very professional and I am told fun and friendly as well, so here goes, a list of things you must consider when booking your photographer, I hope it helps you.

• Most photographers have packages, gold, silver etc each package offers a guide to what they will do on the day and after the wedding in the way of products and services, please be sure to read into the ‘package’ as often wording like whole day photography may be followed by 8 hours, so sometimes it’s not always as clear as you may think

• Includes a CD of images after the wedding, (sometimes followed by up to 400 images) when I shoot a wedding my average gallery is around 1200 for a full day if you have contracted for 400 images then the additional images will cost you more, when I burn 1200 images to data DVD’s that hold 4.7GB of information I can only get 400 images on a disc full size so it’s usually several DVD’s not one so are the images you receive full size at around 10meg per file average or have they been re sized to a smaller file size that will only print to 6x4 for example?

• Two photographers on the day, this is often a hook to catch you, I work with many people who are interested in photography but they have normal weekday jobs, therefore they are ‘other occupations’ that have an interest in photography or a partner, I offer other professional photographers who I have trained to look out for what I look out for but there is obviously an additional charge unless you specifically want a student

• I have heard horror stories that some photographers wont shoot cutting the cake because it was not in your package, make sure you know what they are happy to shoot on the day, it should be everything that happens and everyone that’s there

• If your booking is for a set number of hours and your day over runs so the first dance is late or there are surprise fireworks, is it going to cost you extra for the photographer to stay?

• My package includes a book, please be sure you know what type of book you are getting, personally I think the most important thing is the have the day covered properly and the data then if it takes 6 months to choose your favorite photos and go back for a book surely you will get a better book? And you won’t have to fork out money when you have everything else to pay for

These are just a few highlights you should consider when choosing your photographer, you have probably heard it many times but after the day when the dress is in the cupboard, the cake has been eaten, and everything else is over, the photographs are what you have left to look back on, well that and your own memory and until we can plug out heads into a USB port to look at memories on a big screen TV the only physical way of remembering the day and sharing it is with your photos, with this in mind, the budget for your photography should reflect this, if you pay peanuts you get ...well empty shells all over the place!

I hope this is of some help, whatever you do have a great day



Please excuse the auto spelling check included in the text