Wedding photographers – how much!??!?

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  • Wedding photographers – how much!??!?
  • zokes
    Member

    In your opinion of course. Some people enjoy being able to do these sort of things for family and friends.

    Spending 20K on one day, hiring a stately home that you have no connection with puts you in the same category as driving a Range Rover Sport because you have a small enis and feel the need to tell everyone about it

    I have to agree with the "you get what you pay for" contingent!!!

    Now here is a complete can of worms!!!

    Funeral Photography

    Photos are a little lifeless for my liking!!!!

    IGMC

    Ti29er
    Member

    Market forces are at work here, that much is obvious.
    If you don't want the work I or anyone else in the wedding industry produce, we're not going to lose any sleep.
    In my case: People beat a path to my door. There are sound reasons for this. For example, they see my work in the magazines, at the wedding shows (Earls Court costs me about £4k each year for example plus Olympia and the NEC and you can see how it soon mounts up) and in editorials. They know I have a name and a reputation and people aspire to have me photograph their weddings – this is something I have worked on for the last 15 years, carving out a reputation for me and the work I produce, engendering venues and organisers & brides to both me and my work. Ultimately you as the groom have very little influence in the decision to book most everything at the wedding – get over it!

    Now, if I was too much, no one would be interested in the work, and we're not just talking about the photographs on the day but also the book or albums.
    But it goes far deeper than that.
    Couples book someone with whom they feel confident with, & in my case, I will be with them maybe 15hrs, so they rely upon me and must feel comfortable with me and the work being carried out for them, but the picture taking is really only the tip of the proverbial iceberg.

    If you want, as TJ seems to, to break it down into it's constituent parts and even work on an hourly basis (which we don't do) you will find many photographers are actually on an extremely poor rate as you're neglecting the years worth of training and practice of technique and skills required to produce the work we do, week in, week out.

    Last w/end for example, I spent 3 days in various lectures at the SWPP convention, & visiting a trade fayre to look at new products and trends in the market. I attended a variety of speakers, ranging from marketing and sales, to landscape photography to book production. No one but me pays for this training but it all goes into making me and the services I offer, so it'd be very silly to assume you're paying for just a photographer for a few hours when perhaps your pals can do a similar job: they can't. However, if you can't see a difference in the work being produced, go the friend / relation route by all means assuming one thing: your bride thinks in the same way as you do, 'cause I'll tell you from experience, that's not how 90% of the brides-to-be are thinking right now.

    To think "Hourly rate" is to completely, utterly miss the point. I had 2 solicitors spend 20 minutes looking over one of my properties for a valuation. £200 was the average invoice. Do you think I argued about that? I asked for 10 quotes for the work and took 2 up on these quotes. Do you think I was going to question the years of training in their profession? So simply because you can buy a £500+ camera at Jessops and think you can do a good job doesn't make you a professional photographer. If you think it does, sure, buy the cheap kit and I wish you well, 'cause I've seen too many rubbish wedding pictures to be bothering with the cheap clients who wants everything on the cheap.
    I don't do Skoda weddings, nor have I ever set out to attract Skoda couples; it's the not the sort of couple I am looking for.

    BBC caveat: there are other photographers available.

    zokes
    Member

    I don't do Skoda weddings, nor have I ever set out to attract Skoda couples; it's the not the sort of couple I am looking for.

    Seeing as Skoda are also owned by the people who own Bugatti and Lamborghini, as well and many manufacturers in the middle, it looks like you're cutting yourself out of the market a little 🙄

    perhaps your pals can do a similar job: they can't.

    Good to see you know my friends so well. One of whom's portfolio is for the most part considerably more impressive than yours. It's just he isn't quite so pompous…

    mastiles_fanylion – Member

    "its the people on normal incomes paying a years salary on a wedding that are barking"

    In your opinion of course. Some people enjoy being able to do these sort of things for family and friends.

    Its perfectly possible to have a fantastic wedding that is great fun without spending inordinate amounts of money. The two best I have been too were not very cheap but were a few thousand not tens of thousands and were all the better for that because the people setting them up used imagination to make them work and work well.

    horses for courses and all that

    we paid a fair bit for our wedding and chose a photographer based on their portfolio not their price, as has been mentioned, choose a photographer you like and pay the price or get a mate to do it for free, there really is no middle ground. We didn't want all the crap posed group pictures but succumbed to pressure form relatives to have a few. The rest of the pics were candid and ambient shots which was where choosing the right photographer becomes important.

    I've taken pictures at a fair few weddings and do some corporate photography but i would never undertake the role of a primary photographer in these situations, there is far too much pressure to get the exact results for people who in general don't have the ability to communicate their needs.

    I really enjoy shooting candid shots at weddings but that's me satisfying my creative side, i'd hate to have to adapt my style to fulfil someone else's tastes. People who i've done weddings for as a secondary/candid photographer always say they enjoy my pictures more but i'd never expect them to be the type of picture you can print out for your nan or put on the mantelpiece.

    At some point i'd like to set up a business providing various services along these lines for weddings but i'd need to get a whole lot better at being a photographer first!

    i lit, decorated and took candid shots for this wedding:

    (you can see my cunning coordination with the official photographer to get him to act as my remote flash)

    and this is one of my favourites

    DrJ
    Member

    It's just he isn't quite so pompous…

    Let's face it – that would be difficult

    Spending 20K on one day, hiring a stately home that you have no connection with puts you in the same category as driving a Range Rover Sport because you have a small enis and feel the need to tell everyone about it

    Or you want to have a special day and have the people close to you around you for it. And you want to remember it.

    (BTW, we didn't spend £20k on our wedding nor hire a stately home. We had a small ceremony for family and our closest friends, followed by a marquee in the garden of my wife's parents' house complete with bouncy castle.

    Still cost quite a lot of money though, but every penny well spent IMO.

    Of course it isn't for everyone. I even attended a wedding reception in a shopping centre in York once, but she was an art student and everso slightly mad.

    Its perfectly possible to have a fantastic wedding that is great fun without spending inordinate amounts of money.

    Of course it is. It would be churlish to claim otherwise, but it still doesn't mean that it is wrong to spend lots if you want to. Especially when these comments are being made by people who are happy spending what a non-biker would say is an inordinate amount of money on pushbikes.

    Ti29er
    Member

    One of whom's portfolio is for the most part considerably more impressive than yours. It's just he isn't quite so pompous…

    Zokes.
    You're still not getting this are you?
    It doesn't matter, not one jot, that your friend's portfolio is better than mine.
    He / she needs to sell. Advertise effectively. Market well. Sell. Promote the work. Sell.
    Are you getting any of this?
    It's not about the work per se. I know some photographers who are so confident in their sales abilities and themselves it matters not one jot that I consider the work to be far less competent in almost every way than my own. They do things better than I do. They promote and sell themselves and their work more effectively than I. They charge more and work more often than I.
    Perhaps you're starting to better understand what being a self employed photographer might actually mean.

    zokes
    Member

    You're still not getting this are you?

    To be honest, it's more this bit that grates

    It's just he isn't quite so pompous…

    rather than the prices. However in your case, it appears this has less chance of changing than the ludicrous inflation of cost every time someone mentions 'wedding'.

    Perhaps you're starting to better understand what being a self employed photographer might actually mean.

    I understand quite well actually – you're a business, and you choose how much time and money to invest in various different facets of the business, marketing included. That's the joy of running your own business, you get to choose, within what the market can sustain. You seem to think having the absolute latest and best kit is important, others may invest differently and as you say, market themselves better.

    Although tbh, if you spent slightly more time working on your layouts instead of bickering on here, they'd be a bit more tasteful…

    MrSmith
    Member

    a bit more tasteful? like nice photographs of sunsets?
    'taste' is a funny thing you only have to look at the naive imagery in the photography thread to see this.

    I think Ken Rockwell's 7 Levels of photographers explains things quite well 🙂

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Subscriber

    got bored on the second page but………………

    £2.5k (or more)!

    You could buy 10 secondhand D40's with the kit lenses for that, or maybe 8+ a load of memory cards and flash guns.

    I don't care how good a photographer you are, if 1000 monkeys and 1000 typewriters can produce shakespere, I'm sure 8 moderately competent friends with a passing intrest in photography can take a good shot in P+S mode.

    I'll undercut Mr Nutt, a packet of Jaffa Cakes and you pay for the film processing?

    MrSmith
    Member

    You could buy 10 secondhand D40's with the kit lenses for that, or maybe 8+ a load of memory cards and flash guns.
    I'll undercut Mr Nutt, a packet of Jaffa Cakes and you pay for the film processing?

    shows how much you know about photography

    zokes
    Member

    I'll undercut Mr Nutt, a packet of Jaffa Cakes and you pay for the film processing?

    shows how much you know about photograph

    I see irony doesn't travel well on t'internet….

    a bit more tasteful? like nice photographs of sunsets?

    As in not the gadawful layout of smee ti29er's first album he graced our eyes with. No sunsets involved…

    'taste' is a funny thing you only have to look at the naive imagery in the photography thread to see this.

    And also some of the images in your portfolio….

    Ti29er
    Member

    Hummm.
    The thread has now run its course.
    I have a business model, as do most every self employed person.
    This is how I feed my family and pay the bills and buy things.
    If not, I flounder.
    Good luck with all the cheap kit and none of the know-how.

    I've some layouts to start bringing up to a.n.others expectations, I shall of course change my business model and entire portfolio to accommodate the Skoda Brigade.
    😉
    Back to work me thinks.

    zokes
    Member

    Good luck with all the cheap kit and none of the know-how.

    to accommodate the Skoda Brigade.

    Thus illustrating my point perfectly. Enjoy the BMW X6 brigade – they deserve you as much as you deserve them…

    zokes
    Member

    Good luck with all the cheap kit and none of the know-how.

    I shall. I enjoy my hobby, the kit I use suits me fine. Not that you know what that kit is, not that it matters either…

    I'm fortunate enough to be in a job that lets me afford the kit I want, without having to be quite so obnoxious to justify it.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Subscriber

    The irony will catch up with him eventualy, travels much slower than the speed of light you see……

    MrSmith
    Member

    And also some of the images in your portfolio….

    only some? so there's a half decent one in there?

    Ti29er, nobody is questioning your business model. Its great – mine is very similar – price what your market (or more specifically customer) will pay. But do you have to be such a d!ck about it?

    MrSmith
    Member

    i think a lot of the angst in this thread is jealousy. people see £1500 as a figure somebody earns in a day and compare that to their middle-management office/sales salary and think they are worth more than some tosser walking around with a camera as it's a piece of piss to take snaps.

    if 1000 monkeys and 1000 typewriters can produce shakespere

    they can't

    DT78
    Member

    If you can charge £2.5k+ for a few days of your services and are fully booked & people are happy with the result then fantastic – where do I signup?

    My point as one of the soon to be 'punters' is quite simply that is an awful lot of money for your average Joe and I was trying to understand why the hell it costs so much.

    Basically from reading the comments it boils down to 'it costs that much, because people pay it'

    I'm sure if you had no bookings then you might have to review how much you charge, but whilst people are paying it you can sit in a happy tower of smugness. I reckon I'd be the same.

    I'm quite surprised by the comments about it's the brides day get over it – yes she is organising most of it, but guess who has the budget spreadsheet & whose name is on the bills – yes mine. We have a budget and we are sticking to it.

    Also being referred to as a 'skoda' couple (implying cheapskate) is a bit insulting.

    mr smith: 'taste' is a funny thing you only have to look at the naive imagery in the photography thread to see this

    The "naive imagery" is by amateurs. Are all photographers this pompous? Or is it just you and Ti29er?

    MrSmith
    Member

    it's just an opinion, no different from having an opinion about proffessional wedding photographers.
    in fairness there are some great images there amongst the dross.

    zokes
    Member

    only some? so there's a half decent one in there?

    Yes actually – I particularly like the cranes one. Only I'm worried about typing this or your ego may start rivalling Ti29er's. Most of the 'portfolio' ones look more like they originate in photoshop, not a camera…

    i think a lot of the angst in this thread is jealousy smugness.

    Couldn't give a toss what you think is a fair charge, and good luck to you if the market pays. Very good luck to you if it suddenly stops…

    people see £1500 as a figure somebody earns in a day and compare that to their middle-management office/sales salary and think they are worth more than some tosser walking around with a camera as it's a piece of piss to take snaps.

    Not really, in reality after business costs and tax, quite a few of us on here probably take home more every month, with relative certainty it will come next month. Paranoid are we?

    zokes
    Member

    amongst the dross.

    Ah, I see, you are as pompous as Ti29er…

    MrSmith
    Member

    my ego isn't stoked by randoms on the internet saying they like a picture.

    thanks for the good luck wishes.

    proffessional wedding photographers.

    Nothing proFESsional about not being able to spell.

    Premier Icon thisisnotaspoon
    Subscriber

    they can't

    yes, but I bet 8 amature photogaphers handed 8 mid range cameras can produce sufficient photoghaphs to fill an album.

    My cousin got married in the summer, wedding must have cost a fortune (I'm thinking £100k rather than £10k, the bar bill for 250+ people in a very posh northumberland hotel/castle would probably dwarfed the average wedding!). Out of the albumn some of the pics were nice, others were badly composed (20 people in a line, leaves a lot of grass and sky and no detail of their faces when printed on A4!), and the candid one of me and my brother drinking looked like it had been taken on a £2.99 disposable (out of focus and lots of camera shake). He won't have been cheep, but even I could pick faults in his work.

    zokes
    Member

    my ego isn't stoked by randoms on the internet saying they like a picture.

    Neither is mine. The majority of my photos on Flickr are there as a backup policy. If people choose to comment on them then that's their prerogative. The few I post on here are because maybe I'm pleased with one or two, and someone wants to look at them, and they're on line anyway.

    marsdenman
    Member

    as ever, the forumites have covered well both ends of the discussion so I shall take my leave – but not before I've left you with this…….. 😉

    Marsdenman on here is the fella to go for. Quite literally made our wedding, and the quality of the photography was amazing. Definitely worth every penny…

    And quite frankly, anyone who can make my hatchet-faced family look presentable could probably sort out world peace as well…

    Ayup Chris! Hope you and the missus are grand!

    Cheers Pete :D- trust all is well with you and Meg – did you pick the parcel up from the post office yet?

    MrSmith
    Member

    Nothing proFESsional about not being able to spell.

    tru dat. i guess it's vitally important if you edit a niche mountainbike magazine or work in an office.
    thanks for the advise tho.

    zokes
    Member

    It comes in quite handy for looking professional too, you know, like being a professional photographer….

    MrSmith
    Member

    "looking professional"
    i have a beige waistcoat with numerous pockets for assorted photography gadgets. it gets me the respect i deserve.

    zokes
    Member

    it gets me the respect i deserve.

    Great irony indeed…

    hora
    Member

    A good friend of mine has her own wedding photography business. I dont know where people get 2.5k from?

    For particularly big weddings she will hire in additional professional self-employed Wedding photographers who she has an agreement with. This is so she can ensure that the atmosphere is caught- everything is captured. She'll often spend 12hours+ on her feet, not stopping once and concentrating very hard. She'll reel off thousands of shots then work on them for weeks before presenting them and consultation. Ontop of this – high quality kit for taking, production/post-production costs alot of money and she often upgrades EVERY year.

    People complain about the cost of weddings (I AGREE) however the better (and more diligent) the photographer the better the lifelong result you'll have.

    She doesnt charge anywhere near 2.5k though. Less than half that.

    She also cares about her work, capturing the right moments (she actually DOES care).

    Like I said- I would recommend her. You can see her passion. 😀

    RichPenny
    Member

    You can see her passion. 😀

    Does that cost extra?

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