K
Just Said Yes June 2018

Expensive photography: worth it??

Kaelyn, on May 24, 2017 at 10:51 AM Posted in Wedding Attire 1 22
Saved
Reply

Is it worth paying $2300 for a great photographer when your entire wedding budget is $9250?? I found another photographer for $1200 and her pictures are really good. However the more expensive photographer's pictures are outstanding. In the end, as long as my pictures are beautiful, does it matter that they may not be out of this world? Or will I be so in love with them no matter what because they're memories of the best day of my life??

22 Comments

Latest activity by Lenaya, on March 14, 2019 at 2:05 PM
  • J
    Super September 2017
    Jenny ·
    • Flag

    I did want a nice photographer, but my entire wedding after tax and generous tipping is only costing us $4500, photography excluded, so it didn't make sense for me to pay half that just to preserve the memory. Instead, we did a la carte, and hired a photographer to take first look pictures before and then of the ceremony (4 hours total) and skip the reception entirely.

    We obviously didn't want to cut into our guest experience at all, but it got to the point where photography would have eaten up our little decor/floral/wedding accessories budget - and it was like, well, if I don't decorate or have a nice veil or shoes or hairpieces - there comes a point when I wonder what kind of pictures he'll be taking if everything is bare

    ETA: Our photography came out to be $700 for 4 hours. The difference is I absolutely love his photos. They are very good, not $3500+ package outstanding, but when I first asked, I thought he'd be in the $**** price range. So it was a no-brainer for me.

    • Reply
  • Rachel Langerhans
    Rachel Langerhans ·
    • Flag

    It matters to some people, and not to others. You said it yourself -- the one photographer's photos are "really good" and the other's (more expensive) are "outstanding".

    My input as a photographer on why wedding photography is expensive...

    Why is wedding photography so expensive?

    I know, there is a LOT of "sticker shock" when planning a wedding and booking vendors! I didn't realize how much weddings cost until Andrew and I began planning our own wedding. Talk with your significant other about your expectations, what each of you wants for your wedding, and what you can budget for a wedding in the set amount of time you have to plan. Once you figure out how much you can save, you can then figure out where you want to spend that money.

    I hope that photography will be one of the areas in which you decide to invest. Photography is often one of a couple's biggest "splurges" for their wedding, and with good reason -- photos are one of the only things you have (besides a spouse!) after the wedding is over...

    http://rachellangerhans.zenfolio.com/faqs---advice

    Besides the experience and skill of a great wedding photographer, there are countless hours that go into editing your photos and making them as amazing as possible - seriously, it can be 40 or more hours editing per wedding. Then there are the crazy expenses of being a photographer (equipment, insurance, etc. etc. etc.). There is a lot that goes into photography that customers don't see. You will see the difference in quality of a "cheap" photographer" versus an "expensive photographer" though.

    • Reply
  • andrea
    Super September 2017
    andrea ·
    • Flag

    I paid about $2000 for my photographer and honestly was the cheapest I could find in my arena (Boston/providence) I've had friends pay over 5 grand for theirs and with that costs we have rights to the pictures which was a big thing for me because we don't have to pay extra to get prints

    • Reply
  • VC
    Master May 2017
    VC ·
    • Flag

    We paid $2800 and so far pretty thrilled with the pictures we got from Engagement to our Sneak Peek. They were super accommodating and were awesome to work with. We also got a videographer for $1200 to just capture the day and to make a short video. We liked his work so I hope our video works out.

    I know other wedding from friends/family who are spending around $7000 for photography alone!

    • Reply
  • Celia Milton
    Celia Milton ·
    • Flag

    If it's a great photographer, it's worth the money.

    • Reply
  • Jessica
    Dedicated May 2017
    Jessica ·
    • Flag

    Absolutely, its the only thing you have left after the day is over. I paid $2800 for my photographer, she had a blog post up within 3 days with about 50 images so I could share and I actually got my entire gallery and usb drive and prints already within 2 weeks. She was worth every penny. I am selling all my decorations, threw out my flowers, ate my food, etc. I cant wait to make an album and have pictures to look back on. She was a third of my budget. I cut out non-important things to afford her and I am so glad I did.

    • Reply
  • SSJKarigan
    VIP August 2017
    SSJKarigan ·
    • Flag

    Depends on your priorities - it doesn't sound like you have a lot of room in your budget for the best of the best. I was able to to find a great photographer with excellent reviews for a really good deal - they were running a special so my 10-hour package with 1 photographer and digital rights was only $900. But at the same time, that doesn't include purchasing albums/prints. Whatever you do, don't get a friendor.

    • Reply
  • Powers2
    Master April 2018
    Powers2 ·
    • Flag

    What Lucille said.

    • Reply
  • OctoberBrideeee
    Super October 2017
    OctoberBrideeee ·
    • Flag

    It depends on the quality of their work, if they are a outstanding photographer, it's worth it. We're spending $3,300.00 on ours which includes an engagement shoot, all day coverage, two photographers, and a photo album. Her work is absolutely breathtaking along with the photographer she'll be bringing with her.

    It just has to be in YOUR budget. How many guests are you having? Will they be well fed, boozed up, with music?

    • Reply
  • JoRocka
    Master September 2016
    JoRocka ·
    • Flag

    IMHO- the best you can afford.

    The absolute best.

    Food- and booze and photographer are the top things that should NOT be skimped- and you should throw as much money at those as possible. Guests/family ask for pictures as well- so it isn't JUST for you. And those pictures last forever.

    Everyone should have magical pictures from their wedding day- you should feel 10/10- and a great photographer will do that for you. Just skim some of the BAMs- you'll see quickly who spent well and who didn't. It makes a huge difference.

    • Reply
  • Svetlana
    VIP October 2018
    Svetlana ·
    • Flag

    Agree totally, you get what you pay for when it comes to photography and videos.

    • Reply
  • J
    Super September 2017
    Jenny ·
    • Flag

    I have definitely seen a huge range within price ranges. Generally the tiers are consistent: higher = better quality. But you can definitely find overlaps, especially if you go around asking people for recommendations rather than relying on online searches/reviews alone (unfortunately not every good artist is good at marketing themselves or getting their names out there). That's where you can find great talent that should be in a higher price range if they had a more elaborate business strategy.

    Keep in mind that in the lower ends, photography is a lot like singing. You've watched American Idol. 90% of the people who "think" they can sing actually can't sing for shit but everyone in their lives are too nice to tell them.

    • Reply
  • EngineerInLove
    VIP September 2018
    EngineerInLove ·
    • Flag

    Our photography is important to me because we both have older relatives coming to the wedding and we want to preserve our memories with them with professional photos. FH is a little shocked at the price ($4600), but that's for 10 hours with 2 photographers. I want to have a nicely bound book of professionally taken and printed photos, and a thumb drive with all 170000 edited photos, and I am willing to pay for all of that. If that is not as high of a priority for you then that's totally fine, budget and book accordingly.

    • Reply
  • Jay Farrell
    Jay Farrell ·
    • Flag

    Only you can answer that question, and I think you already have. Isn't it better to spend more and love what you get, rather than spend less and feel indifferent about the products? Not the place to be penny wise and dollar foolish. You get one shot.

    • Reply
  • CoffeeNColor
    Master August 2017
    CoffeeNColor ·
    • Flag

    After venue, food and drink, photos are our biggest line item in our budget because that investment is what we get to take away from the day, besides each other as spouses.

    You also need to compare the packages to see what you're getting. How many hours of shooting, how many edited images, etc? The price isn't the only comparison point.

    • Reply
  • Karie
    VIP October 2017
    Karie ·
    • Flag

    I used about 20% of our budget for a photographer(2 actually) because it is very important to me to have great pictures. You only get married once, and you will not want to skimp on this.

    • Reply
  • JanissC.
    Super April 2018
    JanissC. ·
    • Flag

    I think it is definitely worth the money. Those are basically your memories and those are the photos that we will show our kids. It all depends on what is more important for you, photography was one of our most important things for us.

    • Reply
  • LoveLoveLove
    Super October 2017
    LoveLoveLove ·
    • Flag

    We went with a talented, but less expensive photographer so we could use the money someplace else. She's done our engagement photos and we love them.

    Also, most photographers say they will "work within your budget". Usually that means they'll shoot for fewer hours. Is it possible to use the photographer you like best but have them shoot for a shorter time period or eliminate some of the add-ons? Talk to him/her and see what they can do within your budget.

    • Reply
  • Future Mrs.Hendriksen
    Expert September 2017
    Future Mrs.Hendriksen ·
    • Flag

    I wanted a good photographer with amazing photos because at the end of it all that's what we are taking away.

    • Reply
  • MS. MACMEN
    VIP March 2018
    MS. MACMEN ·
    • Flag

    It depends on your priorities. Outside of reception costs, photography was the area we splurged on the most. In my region (which isn't as expensive as larger cities), wedding prices are supposedly lower and $2300 would be about average for photography here. I think the quality of work is important and what you get for that price. If you think you could still be really happy with the $1200 option, then go for it! Otherwise, find some other areas to cut costs and splurge a little!

    • Reply

You voted for . Add a comment 👇

×

Related articles

WeddingWire celebrates love ...and so does everyone on our site! Learn more

Groups

WeddingWire article topics