Which one to choose, cheap or expensive photographer?
A wedding can be a pricey event. Who should we choose, an expensive or a cheap photographer?
First of all, it is relative what is expensive and what is not. It depends on, what we are comparing to each other. As you can go and have a meal at Tornado Steakhouse, or get Roman Noodles in the corner shop which you have to do on your own. They both will fill their function as feeding us, but the feeling will be different at the end. Applying this terminology on weddings, in the good case, we have this one final meal only, right? :) So we should do it right, or should we trust in our luck only? Is it worth the risk? Of course the Steakhouse might cost more since this level of service needed many other components and extra work to be accomplished.
What is that mean in my case? Do you think I ask much for those "few hours"? Let me tell you what I do for you to give you a complete photography service:
- I travel to your wedding and stay there as long as I am hired. This is usually 5-6 but more likely 10-15 hours. But regardless of the hours we put in the contract, I will have to devote my entire day for this anyways, since I have to prepare myself and my equipment for the task. I have to be focused to you only if I want to do a good job.
- I shoot only as many weddings a year as many I can comfortably do with a good heart. No, I do not spend all my weekends with wedding photograpy and not because I would not able to fill up my calendar. I just simply do not want to be burned out. So you can be sure, I will be as much as enthusiastic to do your wedding than my very first one, back in time.
- I invested a lot in my equipment: Canon DSLR cameras, lens, flashguns, filters, batteries, light modifiers, laptops and software for image processing, studio lighting, hard drives to archive my work. I have a backup of everything just in case, and all these things get amortized after a while.
- I am running a business with accountants. I pay taxes, maintaining vehicles for the transportation of my equipment and myself.
- I work on every single photos, retouch, cut if needed. This can be as high as 1500-2000 photos at a typical wedding! That is why I usually need 1-2 weeks to process the raw materials, design the DVD covers, photo books, set up a browsable web gallery from the pictures.
- I am a professional photographer since 2007, so I have plenty of practical experience. I have learned from my own and other's mistakes which I will never do again. I am continuously develop my gear and myself as a photographer, I follow various photography forums and I am a member fo the SWPP. I love taking photos and I want to be as good in it as much as possible.