Recently, a bride somewhere posted on a website somewhere, venting her disappointment at wedding photographers who seem to charge brides (somehow the groom went missing in her ‘essay’) cut-throat prices (something to the tune of USD3k). Apparently she accuses wedding photographers of charging an average american’s monthly wage for a single day of ‘hanging around’ weddings, taking tons of pics and editing them.
probably this was what she thought wedding photographers do most of the time (photo thanks to Dizzy)
There were lots of responses to that particular comment, particularly in photographers’ blogs and surprisingly, also on various other ‘lifestyle’ blogs. Interestingly there were some commenters who defended the bride.
Anyhows, here’s my thought on this issue. I actually wrote a comprehensive and detailed version but thought it would be better just to have a different version. The earlier version was rather similar to that of the other blogs. So anyways…
Here in Malaysia, you have various options for wedding photographers. Actually, you are spoilt for choice. You can choose the professionals whose chargers ranges from RM8k-RM10k… possibly more. Then there’s the those who dedicate their weekends and any free time to their wedding photography business. They range from RM1.2k all the way to RM6k. Then there’s the “I just got a DSLR and now I am a wedding photographer” photographers. Oh.. and then there’s the friend-friend photographers. The last two ranges from free-of-charge to RM400-600.
The difference? Quality of work. Dedication. Responsibility. Uniqueness. Friendliness. Dare I say quirkiness?
So how do you exactly choose your wedding photographer?
It’s rather simple actually. It’s like buying a car. You decide on what type of car you want, then you set a budget. After that, you go car hunting. You buy car mags to read the reviews. You go online to check out online reviews. Read about what other people are saying about the cars you have in mind. Then you go to the showroom, check out the car, talk to the salesman, see what offer they have. And then go on a test drive. After all that, you review your findings. What are the prices, what are the equipment offered. Does the car have the necessary required safety features? You see, when I first wanted to buy a new car, my most important requirement was that the car must have ESP or Electronic Stability Program. That narrowed down the list of cars.
So it’s the same when you choose your wedding photographer. You might want to first set what kind of photos you want. Then search for them. Ask you friends about it. Search online, in magazines. If you can, and I always recommend, that you meet up with your photographer in person. Why? to see if you can *click* with your photographer…
… like this…
.. or maybe you may find his sense of humour a bit.. erm… disturbing? or maybe you dig his quirkiness..
… (photo thanks to khai@cheekyboy)
Or maybe you might like how he is able to interact with kids???
(photo thanks to anson)
Or maybe his attention to detail/food?
(photo thanks to Stefanie)
.. oh.. and like I always say to people… a good photographer is not shy to be in front of the camera once in a while..
(photo thanks to cow)
(photo thanks to JasonW)
End of the day, it’s your wedding and your money. You decide. but remember, the wedding photographer is there for you, to capture your wedding moments which will last you a lifetime. The keyword here is “moments”. The posed group photos and such are not much of the worry since I believe there would be tonnes of camera during your special day. It’s the emotion in captured moments which will bring you back to your wedding day after many many years. I get emotional sometimes when I see the mother of the bride burst into tears as she wishes her daughter and her new son in law during tea ceremony.
“ Ah lui.. mummy love you… Ah boy.. I give you my dotter ya.. you take care of my daughter ya.. *sob sob*”
then they embrace and both burst into tears. aiyor.. sometimes really got to fight back tears…
So anyways.. I hope you enjoy my rant as my first blog entry of 2012… as much as I enjoyed posting my camwhore pictures. buahaha.