How much does a wedding photographer cost?
And the only way you have to how to save money on wedding photography
If you have started organizing your wedding, you're dealing with your available budget and the many expenses to be incurred. Among the most important voices, for some of you there will certainly be the wedding photographer, the one who will have the honor and the burden of documenting your wedding and leaving you a memory made of images of one of the most beautiful and important day in your life.
But how much does a wedding photographer cost? If you have already looked around for a while, you will have noticed that the offer is very wide, with very different prices. Why is there so much disparity and why is the cost of a wedding photographer so high on average?
If you want to know more about it and if you want to know the only way you have to save money, read on this article!
How to save money in choosing your wedding photographer?
First of all I start listing 7 reasons why the wedding photoshoot cost is high on average, and then I'll show you the only way you can get real savings.
1. Hours of work needed for a wedding photoshoot
A photographer who fully shoots a wedding will be present on the wedding day for a variable number of hours from 8 to 14, up to 16 in the most particular situations.
But the work of your photographer does not start or end on the wedding day!
Before the wedding day
A professional wedding photographer will surely take the time to get to know you, show you his work and explain in depth his way of working. And surely, once you'll sign the contract with him, will follow an inspection (if necessary) and one or more meetings aimed at knowing more about you, your needs and desires and how your wedding will take place.
It does not seem, but the hours of work for an entire wedding are many.
After the wedding day
After the wedding day there is all the work related to the choice and editing of the photographs taken during the day of the event.
If you consider that, on average, thousands photographs are taken for each wedding, very long times are essential for a first selection of the photographs: similar photos, photos in which the subjects are not so pretty, test photos, photos that do not satisfy us and wrong photos (yes, we happen to make a few mistakes too!) are eliminated.
Only this phase needs whole days spent in front of a screen, examining every single photograph. The purpose of this activity is to avoid you customers from this hard and time consuming job and instead provide you with an acceptable number of photographs to choose from.
Then there is the editing phase of the photographs. With regard to this phase, I can talk about the times that affect my work methodology: by choice, in addition to being present at every wedding, I personally carry out the editing of all the photographs and personalize it for each married couple to always obtain original wedding photos. As you can imagine, also this activity requires a lot of time and dedication: it is not a trivial operation like the "copy-paste" so useful in the IT field, but a study of the couple, of the style of the wedding and of the environments in which it is celebrated, in order to achieve a result in which the couple recognize themselves because it describes them to perfection.
About the editing I wrote in detail in this article, so here is the conclusion: "A dedicated and accurate editing process needs at least 5 minutes per picture — and that's conservative — . This means working continuously for 8 hours and 20 minutes every 100 photos..".
We assume that a good photograph is not taken by the camera, but by the one behind it. However the use of a professional equipment allows a series of advantages, compared to amateur ones, which I simplify in:
- general image quality;
- ability to shoot in low-light environments;
- reliability; li>
- fast and precise focus;
- using in all weather conditions.
For my technical needs, in addition, two cameras are needed simultaneously and also the possibility that, in the event of an emergency, a backup solution with an additional camera body is always necessary.
We have also vintage cameras, but we prefer to leave it in our Studio!
The equipment of a professional photographer does not include only the camera. There are many other accessories (also professional) that must be equipped for high-level work:
- memory cards;
- speedlights and headlights, with relative accessories and supports;
- batteries, many batteries that can cover more than one working day, for cameras and accessories;
- a laptop to back up the photographs on the day of the wedding;
- a backpack and more bags containing the equipment.
For the editing process is required a latest generation PC and at least one high quality screen for each workstation (at least one backup is needed).
Finally don't forget the many hard drives needed to make multiple backups of your photos.
As these are technological products, you understand that roughly every four years it is essential to renew a large part of the entire equipment: these are really high costs, especially when there are important technological leaps, which however are necessary to keep up with the times.
3. Books and prints
As far as books and prints are concerned, there are many products in different market segments and therefore prices. Do not think, however, that all photo books and prints defined as "professional" by the producers are really high quality products: since there is a request on different price ranges, there will be as many offers. The cost of this material will not necessarily be high, but the quality will therefore go hand in hand.
Since we think that such an important day as a wedding day requires a memory that not only remains intact over time, but that is customizable in every aspect, we (as many other colleagues do) choose to have as suppliers only specialized companies, attentive to detail, innovative and of the highest quality.
Precious materials, excellent papers, latest generation printers, hand-made in Italy, obsessive attention to detail and assembly are the characteristics of these inimitable products: look at some pictures od our luxury wedding photo books!
You can note the details of the manufacturing.
In addition to the cost of the product itself, you must consider the layout of the photographs and the creation of any graphics: especially if customized, these activities also require a lot of work to be done by the photographer, therefore they contribute to increase the cost of a wedding photo shoot.
Finally, you should not forget the cost that the photographer incurs creating a sample to show to you customers: do not think that it is free material, because it isn't.
It may seem trivial, but there are costs to be incurred also for the maintenance of a Studio where the photographer can welcome his clients and be able to work. Obviously these costs are part of any business, but they make the difference between a professional photographer and an amateur one.
The sign of our Studio.
In our case fortunately we need not too large spaces: since we are specialized in wedding photography photo shoots, we don't need a room installation for studio shooting. However, the costs to be faced are always many and inevitably affect those of the services we offer.
We are people who believe that we can never stop learning and improving ourselves, therefore we also value the experience, which shines through the work published on the website and on social networks. A novice photographer, even if talented, will not be able to manage a wedding like an experienced photographer, therefore the respective costs will necessarily be different.
Experience is enhanced not only with self-learning, but also studying books or during workshops, in person or virtual, which can have very high costs depending on the experience and authority of those present as teachers. Above all, workshops are very important for the chance of discussion and development that they offer.
Once reached a peak, there will always be another one, even higher.
As much as we can love our work and carry out these activities with passion and, I don't hide it, in some cases even with emotion, these are commitments that cost both in terms of time and in terms of money. A photographer who does his job with passion cannot ignore this type of activity.
I don't know if you've ever stopped to think about how much responsibility a wedding photographer has — and feels. I assure you: it is huge. Of course, it's his job and for his experience he surely shot hundreds and hundreds of weddings before yours Nut I like to compare the feeling with which every wedding begins with that of a musician who is about to perform in a concert: there is that almost childish emotion like a pit in the stomach, almost as if the photographer is getting married!
It is beautiful and sincere, that it is so: it means that the one who is taking your photos not only is working with passion despite the countless weddings he attended before yours, but that he really cares about you and wants to leave you the best memory of one of the most important days of your life!
Our responsibility begins with a handshake.
It's true, it's all very poetic, but let's get a little more realistic: a this responsibility must be remunerated in proportion and therefore contributes to the total cost of a wedding photographer.
Still on the subject of responsibility, a professional photographer will not lose unique moments like the exchange of rings, while you may be dissatisfied, and then regret the choice, if you hire a self-styled photographer without a website or studio or VAT number.
7. Other costs
Unfortunately, the costs that a professional photographer has to bear are not yet finished. And of course all of these that I will list below will influence the wedding photographer cost:
- registration to professional associations, for example I am registered with ANFM, the National Association of Wedding Photographers;
- digital photo delivery services (for example our client area to download the delivered photos);
- backup services of original files in the cloud;
- registration on various category portals;
- professional insurance.
I hope that now you have a better idea of how many individual costs come to make that of selling. But now we are at the point that interests you most: how to save money on wedding photography?
How to save money on a wedding photographer
After reading the previous 7 paragraphs, at this point you should already have an idea of what the answer to this question will be. But let's just take the time to think about this other question: what do save and convenience mean for you? For me they mean solve a problem.
I have a problem? I definitely solve it!
Let's say that I need an object. Like everyone now I go on the internet, I start looking, I read the reviews, I look at the price and, after my evaluations, I click on "buy". But what did I buy? The object, it is true, but also and above all the assistance and the guarantee in case of problems. So I hardly buy "first price" items, because they don't solve completely my problem, but they could create others once I find myself with the object in my hands.
If, in looking for the photographer for your wedding, your idea of savings and convenience includes:
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