Should I hire a Professional Photographer for my wedding?

Wedding planning is all about setting your priorities.


In the current economy making sure you’ve covered all the bases, while staying on budget can be a challenge.


You may be tempted to save a few dollars, and forgo hiring a professional photographer.

After all, your friend / relative / co-worker has a nice new digital camera,

and they’ll photograph your wedding for free.

Or you know a student who’s just out of school and looking to build their portfolio.

They’ll shoot your wedding and give you the files on a DVD for $500.00.


I know this will sound self serving coming from a Professional Wedding Photographer,

but you need to remember one simple fact when you’re making this decision:


You get what you pay for.


It’s as simple as that.


I was contacted no less than six times last year by couples with a DVD containing 1200 snapshots from their wedding.

They were overwhelmed and wanted me to fix the exposure, crop, color correct and retouch their wedding images and produce an album for them.

My answer is always the same: “Why don’t you ask the person who took the photos to do that”

The answer is usually that their friend either can’t or won’t do it.



What do you get by hiring me that your friend can’t provide?



  • I’m a professional. I’ve been a full time photographer for over 20 years.


  • I know how weddings work. I know how to keep things on track, and how to keep the photos flowing.


  • I’m excited about shooting your wedding NOT nervous. (There is a HUGE difference)


  • I’ve got top-of-the line equipment and a spare for every piece of equipment I use.


  • I know my cameras inside and out. I know how they work and I know how to make them give me the result I’m looking for.


  • I’m not “Pretty good” at Photoshop. I’m great at Photoshop. All my final prints are fully retouched and you will love the way you look.


  • I work with a contract to make sure there are no misunderstandings and you know exactly what you are going to get for your money.



That last point is hugely important. I have a signed contract with all my couples. From the word go, everyone knows what is expected of them.


I’m not going to “forget” your wedding. I’m not going to decide I’d rather go to the cottage,

or get nervous and back out ten days before the wedding.

If one of my cameras develops a fault, I’ll just use one of my spares.


Over the past years, I’ve been contacted by couples looking for a photographer on short notice because their friend backed out for one of the above reasons.

Believe it or not,I’ve even been approached by couples while I was photographing a wedding

asking me to photograph them because their friend didn’t show up.



As I said at the beginning, Wedding planning is all about setting your priorities. One thing to remember though is twenty years down the road,

you’ll be glad you made the small investment of having a professional capture and immortalize one of the most important days of your life.


Good luck in your planning.



by peter


April 5, 2009 - 11:28 am

Hodgy - Damn, good post. I really couldn’t say it better myself, word for word, it’s exactly what I would say. Nice.

Hodgy’s last blog post..Thanks for the phone call.

April 11, 2009 - 10:18 am

Tracy Besek – Dearborn, Michigan Photographer - Great post on the importance of hiring a true professional for such an important event!

April 16, 2009 - 10:43 pm

Minneapolis Minnesota Photographer - Well said! B & G need to be better educated.

Minneapolis Minnesota Photographer’s last blog post..Amateur vs Professional Photographer

April 23, 2009 - 11:30 am

melanie - Wonderfully put. Experience cannot be understated. Few people don’t know what they don’t know and so assume that a friend with a camera is good enough. I know many that have looked back and wished they had a professional in the end. At the time they wanted to keep their budget down and this seemed an easy way to do it, but when they ended up with faces full of shadows and underexposed pictures during the reception and ceremony, they reconsider whether photography was the place to skimp. The latter being more technical shooting than most amateurs are up for. If you are going through all the trouble to plan the beautiful details of your day don’t risk it not being captured as you imagined and more.
Good post- thank you.
melanie –

December 8, 2009 - 3:56 am

Adam Cavanagh - Great information! We definitely need to educate our clients just like this.

January 7, 2010 - 6:39 am

Pretoria Wedding and Baby Photography Photographer - To the point. Love it, could not say it better myself!
.-= Pretoria Wedding and Baby Photography Photographer´s last blog ..venue-012.jpg =-.

September 1, 2010 - 10:34 am

Philadelphia Wedding Photographer - So true, I agree with you 100 percent!

October 14, 2010 - 7:54 am

Wedding Venue Essex - I think hiring a professional photographer for wedding is a must, one should not take any kind of risk in this important mater,

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