Advice to my Bride Tribe.
What I’m about to tell you is all important information. 2018 Wedding Season is coming to a close and these are the things that I picked up that I really need you to ingest. Apply. And consider. Most importantly to have a successful wedding day; here are my tips.
TO CURRENT. PRESENT. + FUTURE Brides:
As I come to a close for the 2018 Wedding season; this year promised to have more challenges and I felt as though for the first time in a long time I possibly took on more than I ever imagined. Editing 45 Weddings non-stop while also traveling almost every weekend and photographing, culling, saving to the HD’s, processing, and editing. Being your wedding photographer isn’t just editing the photographs AFTER your wedding; it’s the entire process from the initial booking – to the delivery of your wedding gallery.
This blog post is for my bride tribe. Because when you book with me you are booking someone who is extremely passionate and as you know I am always doing whatever I can for my brides. So in return; if you know how you can make my life better with this advice; I want to share it. I want to share with you what I’ve learned this year.
I’ve heard this SO many times this year. I tell my bride to make sure they tell the Venue or coordinator that I have to EAT with the Bride + Groom / with the Bridal Party; and they do; and the Venue / coordinator says; “Sure, of course they will.” And then guess what; it doesn’t happen. Because they don’t care. They don’t care about us missing a special moment. No matter how many times we have to explain to them WHY we must eat at this time; they don’t care. So I found a solution to fix this problem real fast.
GIVE US A SEAT AT A TABLE; make us a name card; then we can go as we please and we make sure we get fed; and we are in the room with you.
9/10 times we are placed outside of the ballroom; in which we can’t see whats going on.
** this is what frustrates me the most. One wedding this year; was in a barn. The entire bridal party + guests were eating in this barn. There was a couch in a corner of the barn; and my partner and I took a plate, sat on the couch and the coordinator came over and was like; please don’t eat right here. I’m like, where would you like me to eat? She’s like, outside or on the stairs next to the DJ ( where its barely enough room for the DJ himself ). So what you’re saying is even though Im a vendor + a human being and part of this wedding I can’t eat infront of the guests or my groom + bride because that’s not allowed… WHY??? **
** Another instance, after cocktail hour; my bride and groom was about to be fed; and the venue made sure I knew they would not serve me until AFTER everyones been fed ( which is when we have to work again ) and I asked for a salad and they acted as though I was an inconvenience. I then ate on the cocktail table which everyone was all over at one point during the evening; and the manager told me not to eat on it. **
** We are set up in backrooms, the outside of venues ( where its cold ) or ( really hot ), basements, upstairs, downstairs; all places NOT in the same zone as a bridal party + guests. This is the main reason we don’t eat at your weddings or miss moments you ask us about later. So take care of your wedding photographers; and give them a seat at a table; and we’ll skip out on being treated like irrelevant trash.
I was just talking to a client about this the other day. As a guest at a wedding, WHY do you want to bring your IPAD or IPHONE and take photographs of someones wedding. What are you going to do with those photographs? Do you even know them well? Or the people who video the entire ceremony. I understand capturing moments; hellllloooo its my job. But that is the most TRUE statement right there. ITS MY JOB. I am the investment. I am the person they are paying to be there to do just that. Capture your moments. I can do a HELL of a lot better job when I don’t have an IPAD in my line of vision. I can do a hell of a lot better when I don’t have an aunt half way in the middle of an aisle taking what she believes will be a better photograph then the person paid to be there.
Recently I had a bride ask if I had anymore photographs of her and her father walking down the aisle. I think I was only able to snag one before an aunt stuck her iPad in the aisle. When the package is one photographer; I am usually down by the groom so I can get his expression. Because that’s our biggest moment. Then obviously I am able to swing around and grab our beautiful bride walking down the aisle. In this moment; I can get EVERYTHING. When I am not challenged by iPhones + ipads. I do this so much that I should be able to get low enough to crop aunty pam out…right? Wrong.
Your aunt, grandma, grandpa, uncle; they’ll get upset. They’ll not understand why they can’t take photographs during this time. During the time their loved one is getting married; and if you’re more worried about their feelings than your photographs then my advice to you is to get a bunch of film cameras from CVS and have everyone take photographs with those; and you’ll have a ton of photographers in the crowd doing their job to take the best photograph they can instead of enjoy your day. Being there WITH you. For you.
Trusting that your photographer that you searched long and hard for because photographs are the second most important thing you book after your venue / date; trusting that we know your best interest. That telling you all of this advice isn’t going to help you make better memories. I have told a few people how to explain and how to tell your guests that you are having an unplugged ceremony so we don’t run into the people who sneak out their phones; and then all the people who see them do it; they do it and you’re advice and you’re asking didn’t work… because that happens too believe it or not. This is what you say.
Officiant before the Groom walks down the aisle:
“ The bride and groom have asked me to tell you; this is an unplugged ceremony. They have hired trusted professionals that are here to capture everything + more that they want. I was told if we see an iPhone, camera or iPad out; we will halt the ceremony. Our bride and groom want you to be here to enjoy this moment with them. Thank you.”
You’ll thank me later
OK GUYS. I am going to get vulnerable with you. I’m going to let you see the inside of my soul with this one. And I hope you cherish it, remember it, love it, and help make it better. Because as much as you need what you need, I need this.
WORDS OF AFFIRMATION
As much as you need PREVIEWS immediately following your wedding. Which, let me remind you. As a photographer; we show up; take care of all the things we have and need to do for your wedding day that goes WAY past our job. Sometimes we’re the planner, the DJ, we are considerate, helpful, we’re your bartender when you need a shot before walking down the aisle, we’re your therapist when you’re freaking out and nervous, we’re your entertainment when you’re getting your hair and make up done, we’re your everything. We do it all. We are in charge of rings and the dress and making sure we don’t drop it, or have it fall off the hanger. We hold so much of your day in our hands to make sure we knock it out of the park and then we work all day. We’re on our feet; we’re getting all the shots all the details and like you saw in the first page we sometimes don’t eat; because venue’s suck…. right?
So after a 8-10 hour wedding day; the sneak peeks are your heart and soul. They are what will help you stay patient waiting for the editing to start. The waiting game; and you’re usually patient, but you reach out every now and then and you ask about more; or when they’ll be done; or how excited you are; all the words; all the excitement; and Us photographers work all day at your wedding; and within 24 hours you get like 40+ Sneak Peeks; and you’re happy.
( what has happened to me a few times this year, which hurt my feelings; not gonna lie to you )
I deliver the wedding gallery;
No words. No excitement. No thank you. No I’m so in love.
No nothing. nothing.
It hurts guys. And thats just the truth. We need words of affirmation too. And I get it, life gets busy, you get them delivered and you forgot to say something; but even after you “forgot to say something” I usually have canvases or prints to get to you and without an ounce of communication it breaks my heart.
So do better for us. Make sure you appreciate and thank your wedding photographs because it will go along way. More than you will ever know. Luckily I have more happiness and more support and more brides who tell me everyday how amazing the photographs are and how happy they are to make up for the loss of the others. But we need that from you as much as you need sneak peeks after a long 10 hour day. Remember that. Be good to your photographers and I guarantee you; you won’t be disappointed.
I understand this is a LOT of information.
I want the best for my brides.
In return I want to make sure you understand the simple little things that will make my job easier.
We look out for each other.
Team work makes the dream work.
Looking forward to 2019.
( Also: If I’ve made spelling errors, grammar errors or anything else, please remember I am a photographer with a fast thinking brain and no patience to check… that doesn’t make me unprofessional, just extremely excited and I never said I was a English teacher…. 😉 )
THIS IS SPECIFICALLY TO MY MOTHER AND BEST FRIENDS… they love to correct me.