General Question

willbrawn's avatar

Married folks: How much did you pay for your wedding photographer?

Asked by willbrawn (6614points) July 10th, 2009

And was it worth it?
Did you get what you paid for?
What kind of package deal did you recieve?

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16 Answers

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

My father was my wedding photographer and his colleagues were there as well doing video. So we saved a lot of money.

willbrawn's avatar

@Simone_De_Beauvoir with your father being the photographer did you get the kind of images you were hoping for?

Simone_De_Beauvoir's avatar

@willbrawn oh absolutely, his business is of wedding photography

marinelife's avatar

I didn’t, and I regret it. My brother-in-law completely flubbed the video, and snapshots from various sources were hit or miss.

willbrawn's avatar

@marina did you not get one because of the price? What price range would you have liked?

marinelife's avatar

I didn’t realize how much a pro could do at that time. Recently, I have seen wedding photos that totally wowed me, although I am not sure that quality was available when I got married.

Also, I am so unfamiliar with the going rate, that I am not sure what I would be OK paying.

Dorkgirl's avatar

25 yrs ago around $500 I think.
Yes, it was overall worth it, but the guy who showed up to do the photos was not the photographer we spoke with and interviewed. He was kind of a putz and missed some shots that he should have gotten.
Be sure you know who’s coming and are in full agreement about what the end result will be.

fireinthepriory's avatar

I’m not married, but I’m a student photographer and was once asked if I’d like to shoot a wedding for some recent alum of my university. I think they were going to pay me $200 for the day. Granted, this is hells of cheap for wedding photography, but I was a student so it was good for both parties – $200 for a day’s work sounded great to me! Actually I couldn’t shoot it because I was away, but I then recommended to them a friend from one of my photo classes who’d worked for a wedding photographer previously. I know she does really great, quirky work, so I hope they liked her style.

If you’re looking for great, cheap photography in general then students are the way to go. People email our photo professor all the time with jobs, they tell him the style they’re into and then he offers the job to people individually who he thinks would be good, taking styles into account.

The only caveat is that a student is unlikely to be willing to mass-print your images for you. They’ll likely be into editing them, but you’ll probably have to ask them to give you a disk with edited jpg images on it. You can then print whichever ones you want at one of a million online photo-printing sites.

jamielynn2328's avatar

It depends on the quality. Friends of mine charge $1,800, but they have art degrees and have been featured in popular photography and wedding magazines. A lot of work also goes into the editing process, I was surprised by how much time one wedding actually takes the photographers. It’s not a one day gig. I think if you go really cheap then you will get what you pay for, just like anything. If you want a pro, I think you will pay at least $1,000.

azusenal's avatar

I got married back in ‘85 so I only paid the photographer $200.00 back then. That included all pictures, and a leather bound wedding album with names embossed. Not married anymore, but that was a great deal then!!!

cookieman's avatar

About $800.00 in 1996. They came out very nice but she was “standard” wedding photographer.

We had looked at some more “artistic” wedding photographers, but they were upwards of about $1,200.00.

Would have preferred the latter of the two, but a budget is a budget.

cak's avatar

We had a very simple wedding – very close friends and family, only. The one true big expense, the photographer. We went with someone that provided us with beautiful, artistic pictures, not standard photos. We have beautiful color and black and white photos, but it cost us. I got a professional discount, because I was an event planner, at the time, we paid $2200.00

Darwin's avatar

A friend did our wedding photos – he was a professional photographer and did a terrific job. We paid him $150 back in 1989.

simpleD's avatar

If pictures are important to you, you need to hire a pro. With years of experience, and plenty of backup equipment, pros are dependable and well prepared and able to anticipate once-in-a-lifetime shots that others might miss. Hire services that you can depend on. You’ll have more important things to think about on your day than whether or not the photographer is doing his job.

Expect to spend at least $1200 for a basic package, up to several thousand that might include multiple photographers or assistants and advanced digital presentations of your images.

Find a photographer whose style you like. Some take a documentary approach, staying out of the way, capturing important moments, and only stepping forward to pose you for the occasional formal. Others will take charge and stage the whole day for you, and create fairy-tale images that may or may not be what you want. Some will be in between.

As @Dorkgirl said, try to find out who will actually be showing up to shoot for you. Many studios employ a number of photographers, and thought hey usually try to match you up with someone best suited, your chemistry might not mix. But those studios will be cheaper than hiring a well known individual.

Also find out exactly what you’ll be getting. The cheapest route would be to find someone willing to sell you the files, then you can have them printed as you wish. Of course, you may end up spending more money and certainly more time getting prints and albums made on your own. You may be offered printed proofs in an album, or digital images on disk or online. Prices may or may not include final albums.

Shop around, read the fine print, and don’t be swayed by sales pitches.

gregc's avatar

top-class photographers will be more than most of above responses suggest. we reviewed a lot of photographers’ work for a wedding in a small city, and we found quality to be pretty directly proportional to price.

martijn86's avatar

Don’t compromise when it’s your wedding. Sure scrap the ridiculously high priced but for a full day and all the service afterward look for something close to $2000,- 18k-22k segment. And more importantly, look at his/her work. If they only do weddings, be careful, you don’t want to end up with ‘your average family photo’s’.

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