5 Reasons Why you Should Hire a Professional Wedding Photographer

Tips & Advice // Published by Sam, Editor - June 21, 2019

When it comes to planning your dream wedding and you start totting up the costs involved for all the different things it is understandable to start looking at cutting costs.

However when it comes to capturing your wedding day, here are 5 reasons to not skimp on your wedding photography and asking your friend down the road or someone in the family that got a nice new camera for Christmas.

Why you Should Hire a Professional Wedding Photographer

We have 5 important reasons why you Should Hire a Professional Wedding Photographer, so make sure you do and understand the value of photography. Wedding photography is about a story, we have an article on Why Wedding Photography is So Important here that covers this.

1. There is more to photography than an expensive camera

In the same way an artist uses a brush, a carpenter uses a hammer and a writer uses a pen, these are just tools, it’s how the person uses it that produces amazing creations.

There is more to photography than an expensive camera

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Just because they have all the bricks, tools and suppliers to build a house, would you trust a part time builder with little experience to build your house? You would more than likely look for someone with years of experience, and a lot of happy and satisfied customers who would recommend them.

This article ‘I Regret Not Hiring a Professional Wedding Photographer‘ tells us why you should think twice about using a family member or friend to capture of your special day.

You want someone who knows how to use the camera, who has the experience of taking photos in different light, different conditions, composing different shots and executing it perfectly. The camera doesn’t do this, the photographer does this and has developed their skill and knowledge through years of experience and many hours of shooting. With this you get consistency, not one or two stunning photos, but a whole albums worth.

2. An amateur means more work for you.

A professional photographer will have years of experience capturing weddings, they will know the shots to take, they will know where to be at that right time, they can be left to get on with their job in full confidence knowing they will be where you want them to be.

They will also anticipate what will happen next, they will know the flow of the day, they will have already found the perfect place for those cute bride and groom shots, they will know the ideal location in the church with the perfect back drop, your wedding day isn’t a photo shoot, it is a dynamic event with only one chance to capture those moments.

3.  Feeling at ease

Weddings have both posed moments as well as action shots. You may have asked for some group photos and posed shots, you want to feel at ease and a professional shall be able to make you feel comfortable and natural, not stiff and awkward, these moments are part of your wedding day, so they should be fun and enjoyable. This skill is something that comes from experience and having trust in them. Read our article 5 Ways to Know You’ve Found the Perfect Wedding Photographer to ensure they are the one for you.

If you feel at ease then this will show in your photos, it will also mean you have more fun, feel comfortable and not worrying or stressing, it would be just like taking photos with friends where there is no pressure, just relaxed fun and beautiful natural photos.

4. What If…

What if…? What if the photographer falls ill, there is an emergency, their computer hard drive fails? The worst case scenario is you have no photos of your big day at all! A professional photographer will have a plan B, they shall have contacts to call upon, they will have back ups of back ups. An amateur may not have a plan B and may not be able to afford to back up everything up, where as a reputation is on the line for a professional.

5. You only have one chance

This is your wedding day, and hopefully you will only be having one special day. You only have one chance to capture your wedding day, so make sure you trust and have confidence in your photographer.

When the big day is over, apart from memories all you have are photos, photos you shall treasure, photos you shall show to friends, family and grand children. Make sure these are positive memories and not a book that reminds you how important photography is and how you wish you spent a bit more and hired a professional.

The Bottom Line

If you reduced the budget on your cake and cut a few corners to make some savings, hardly anyone would know and they certainly won’t remember, after a week your cake will be gone. After your wedding you will have wedding photos telling a beautiful story holding lots of amazing memories, you will have this forever… Make sure you hire a professional wedding photographer.

Your Thoughts - 20 Comments

  1. Austyn Johnson says:
    Posted August 13, 2014 at 12:22 PM | Permalink

    Absolutely agree, some of the horror stories you hear…

  2. I don’t think reducing the wedding cake budget is advisable, I’ve seen lots of wedding cake disasters! Instead I’d recommend reducing your wedding guest list to reduce costs. Smaller more intimate weddings tend to be much more relaxed and enjoyable.

  3. There is only one chance to get it right, so it is best to hire a professional that you trust. Great article.

  4. I couldn’t agree more, especially with number 1. It’s like thinking someone’s posh oven is responsible for creating that amazing roast dinner.

  5. An excellent article, and I wish more couples would think about photography for their wedding as one of the most important elements of the day.
    I’ve had more than one experience of a couple not wanting to pay my fees, and going to an amateur, only to be bitterly disappointed with their wedding photographs.
    It’s even more heartbreaking when they come back to me after their wedding and ask if I can salavage these poor images in Photoshop.

  6. Such valuable information. With so many people now owning enthusiast digital cameras, so many couples are opting to hire non-professionals without being fully aware of the risks. They really don’t understand the skill and artistry that’s involved in photographing a wedding. I’ve also had people not wanting to pay my fees and opting to employ a non professional…….the result is always the same – disappointment and regret.

  7. Top notch advice and information, digital cameras have made everyone a photographer so it getting harder and harder for couples to see the difference between a pro and newbie photographer.

  8. Patrycja says:
    Posted January 30, 2016 at 12:48 AM | Permalink

    just tell me… how did all the porffesional photographers begin? Or maybe they were PRO from the begining? 😀

    So what do you think about hiring both – pro and ametour? Becouse i heard that photographers hate to be not the only one, unless they are a duo.

  9. Patrycja, you’re of course right, all the professionals once started out as amateurs. I would like to think that they disclosed their lack of experience and priced their services accordingly! With photography, like with most other things, people get what they pay for and paying very little also usually means getting very little in return.

    Hiring a pro and an amateur together? In my opinion not a great idea unless the “amateur” is an assistant brought along by the photographer. I have had the brother of the groom with a new DLSR “second shoot” a wedding once and it was…difficult…to say the least. Most DSLR fanatics have no concept of how to be discreet (groom’s brother approached the altar at one point and starting papping with his flash on full blast – an absolute no-no!) and they also forget that the pro is there because they have been paid to get the key shots. No chance of me getting a picture of the first kiss if the amateur is constantly popping up in front of my camera. But that’s just my two cents worth. I have no problem with guests snapping pictures discreetly!

    On the question why one should pay for a pro: A good wedding photographer is relatively expensive because the client pays for years of experience shooting weddings, professional equipment and the expertise to use it properly, experience handling difficult lighting situations like shooting in a dark church without flash, dealing with backlighting at the registry office, or flash photography on the dance floor without making everyone look like a ghoul. A professional shooter knows how to arrange group photos, herd the grandmothers in a charming way, and make everyone feel relaxed in front of the camera. Pros also use professional editing software and preview galleries and all that. Not sure, if Uncle Bob with his new D4 is such a dab hand at Lightroom?

  10. Yes, all pros started off as amateurs once. When I used to shoot for fun, I had tonnes of friends ask me to shoot their wedding, but I turned them all down until I wend to college and graduated with a degree in photography. Then, I was considered professional. However, shooting weddings is a big deal, so I actually had some friends dress up in wedding clothes so that I could practice shooting weddings portraits. I also charged really low when starting out so that I could get experience and build up a portfolio. Amateurs who claim to be professionals and ‘practice’ while shooting real weddings are walking on a slippery slope to possibly botch the job and get sued.

  11. So true, better to be relaxed and have beautiful memories!

  12. You echoed my thought. Camera is just a tool. It is not the camera which creates the magic, it is the person behind the camera!
    The point number 4 is very true. I know the cases where the idea of giving a task to a friend for photographing the wedding went wrong. I have witnessed weddings where the friends of the bride and groom was doing photography and their gadgets malfunctioned. Such photographer friend did not have back-up camera also.
    Once, My friend called me up in the middle of the night. He was not a professional photographer. He was very tensed. He was shooting the wedding of his friend as a token of love. His card got failed in the middle of the wedding. Of course! He can not be expected to carry pro memory cards or back up cards because it costs double the money to manage professional gadgets. Such things can ruin the whole idea of saving money by not hiring a professional photographer. Later on, post decision regret stays longer than expected.
    Yes! I also suggest people to shop around. There are very good photographers who work on minimum prices. There are photographers too for every kind of budget. One can contact them. At least, such photographers are prepared for any malfunctioning with the technology.

  13. Thanks for this informative list. I agree with you, especially on the topic about hiring an amateur. My sister made one of her closest friends her wedding photographer during her wedding last year. Though her friend took amazing pictures, my sister felt stressed as the friend isn’t that acquainted with the wedding flow and she had to call her every time a photo needs to be taken. So when I got married, she helped me hire this professional wedding photographer West London based so I won’t have the same experience as hers. It’s only a once in a lifetime event, so don’t risk it by hiring amateurs!

  14. Thanks for sharing this, the couples must be aware of all these fails when they hire a real professional.

  15. Khorae Olivier says:
    Posted May 24, 2018 at 4:43 PM | Permalink

    I like how you talked about a good wedding photographer being able to help you feel comfortable and natural in and out of the photos. My sister is getting married soon so I am trying to help her find a good photographer in her area that she can afford. Thank you for the information about how this should be like taking pictures where there is no pressure but only relaxed, fun, and beautiful photos.

  16. Shedi Photography says:
    Posted May 30, 2018 at 10:16 AM | Permalink

    I am a photographer based in Dubai. I will use your given tips to convince my clients. Thank you!

  17. This article is a great piece which justifies and adds value to the work of professional wedding photographers. Being one, I was very happy reading it. To the point and well said. Great work. Congratulations from Ben Yew Photography

  18. Thomas Peterson says:
    Posted June 21, 2019 at 5:36 PM | Permalink

    I liked that you mentioned that just because someone has a camera doesn’t mean they know how to use it. I’ve been planning a wedding and my fiance had a cousin that has a nice camera but I didn’t really like his portfolio. I would love to get in touch with a wedding photographer who can meet our needs.

  19. I couldn’t agree more. Clients nowadays are over smart. they take quotes from professionals hire some amateur with the same gear. End of the day, they want to save that 1500$ but end up with a dump of useless photos.

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