Wedding Photography and Videography Forum

Photographer banning flash at wedding?

Hello,

I just met with a photographer and her husband who we absolutely fell in love with! They are within our budget, have the best personalities, our friends have worked with them for family portraits, etc. We were so ready to book them until during her contract review, she said that guests absolutely must not use any flash while the photographers are working.

I understand the reasoning behind this, since others flash may interfere with her shots if they are shooting the same target. For example, if multiple people are trying to take a picture of the first dance. However, during the reception, if people want to whip out their cell phones and snap a selfie or a group shot with their friends, shouldn't they be allowed to? Or, at least, if the photographer is facing another way or isn't nearby?

Has anyone ever heard of this rule? Or, has anyone been a guest at a wedding where they weren't allowed to use their cameras? Please shed some light on this and provide feedback. This is the only thing hindering me from booking her officially! Thank you!

Re: Photographer banning flash at wedding?

  • My contract had a clause stating that our photographer was the exclusive photographer for the wedding and that no guests could use professional photography equipment near where she was working or otherwise interfere with her photos, but it didn't say anything specifically about flash. 

    We politely requested that people not take photos during the ceremony, but didn't care about the reception at all. 

    I think the best thing to do is let your photographer know your concerns and ask her these questions. Perhaps this clause is negotiable.
  • This is newer "rule" that has really gained speed with the idea of an "unplugged" wedding - thank Pintrest.

    It would rude to ask your guests not to take photographers unless the venue has a rule against this. Some churches do not allow flash or any photography, but that doesn't sound like it is an issue for you. Please don't tell adults how to behave, they know how to behave.

    I would talk to them about it. I can understand the rule of not allowing guests to take photos during the posed time. But it is ridiculous to tell your guests they can't take photos, especially during the reception.

    Lazy photos have clauses like this to protect themselves when they don't get an image. Not all photos will turn out, regardless of if another flash interferes. I have very rarely had an issue where a completing flash ruined a photo (I've been doing photography/ photojournalism for more than 15 years, not wedding photos). 

    In the age of digital your photog should take multiple photos of the first dance, cake cutting, etc. The only photo that this is really ever an issue is the first kiss. Which is why you should kiss for 7 seconds so your photog can fire off at least 2 photos.

    I would bet she will take the clause out if you sign off acknowledging that you realize flash from guests photos might cause some of the images to not turn out.

    I for one would be terribly offended if I was told I could not take any flash photos at a wedding. Especially if I want a pic of me and my friends or family. The photog isn't going to go around taking photos of ally he guests for their personal use. What does she want you to do, confiscate phones and cameras at the door? Good for you realizing this is not a normal request.

    GL! :)
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • rob0225rob0225 member
    First Comment
    edited February 2014
    I suspect this is because they don't want to be held responsible if a "must have" shot is ruined because of flash.

    If the photog is using camera settings for no flash, an innocent flash can ruin the photo.


    japrincess24
  • rikkaii said:
    Hello,

    I just met with a photographer and her husband who we absolutely fell in love with! They are within our budget, have the best personalities, our friends have worked with them for family portraits, etc. We were so ready to book them until during her contract review, she said that guests absolutely must not use any flash while the photographers are working.

    I understand the reasoning behind this, since others flash may interfere with her shots if they are shooting the same target. For example, if multiple people are trying to take a picture of the first dance. However, during the reception, if people want to whip out their cell phones and snap a selfie or a group shot with their friends, shouldn't they be allowed to? Or, at least, if the photographer is facing another way or isn't nearby?

    Has anyone ever heard of this rule? Or, has anyone been a guest at a wedding where they weren't allowed to use their cameras? Please shed some light on this and provide feedback. This is the only thing hindering me from booking her officially! Thank you!
    Unless your ceremony location has a strict policy against flash photography, I think it's rude to ask your guests, either at the ceremony or reception, to refrain from using their cameras.  Your guests are HAPPY for you and want to capture the day too....let them.

    I'd see if you can work something in with the photographer that can bypass this clause.  Otherwise, quite honestly, I'd find someone else.  I wanted people to relax, enjoy the wedding and capture the events too.....I didn't want to put rules and restrictions in place.....that's no fun.

    And FWIW, one of my favorite photographs is one that a guest took!
  • The photographer we just contracted for my DDs wedding has the same clause.  To be honest, I am good with it.  We are doing all of the group photos prior to the wedding so there is no issue with family members getting in the way to get the perfect shot.

    For us, it comes down to please don't do flash photography during the wedding, the cake cutting, and the first dance.  We have GREAT family and friends but I have seen some of them step right into the aisle when the bride is coming down the aisle to get a picture.  With a flash. 

    I will probably lose my etiquette card and go to etiquette Hell, but to be honest, I was kinda relieved to see it.  I love our people but at my nephew's wedding my SIL was facebooking it during the vows.  I was not impressed.  Off to hell now... 

    photogenikjaprincess24
  • kmmssg said:

    The photographer we just contracted for my DDs wedding has the same clause.  To be honest, I am good with it.  We are doing all of the group photos prior to the wedding so there is no issue with family members getting in the way to get the perfect shot.

    For us, it comes down to please don't do flash photography during the wedding, the cake cutting, and the first dance.  We have GREAT family and friends but I have seen some of them step right into the aisle when the bride is coming down the aisle to get a picture.  With a flash. 

    I will probably lose my etiquette card and go to etiquette Hell, but to be honest, I was kinda relieved to see it.  I love our people but at my nephew's wedding my SIL was facebooking it during the vows.  I was not impressed.  Off to hell now... 

    I feel the type of people that do this probably aren't the type that are going to listen to a 'no flash' announcement.  And to add to that.....my parents barely know how to turn the flash on and off, so no doubt my father would accidentally set it off!

    I guess I could understand it more as a guest during the ceremony, especially if it's a place of worship.  But at the reception for the cake cutting?  Not so much.  Maybe I'd feel differently if we got crappy photos, but everything came out fine!  Although I guess there could have been another dozen photos or so that the photographer didn't send us because of other flashes that ruined it, so who knows!

    I do agree though....I HATE the constant facebooking and social networking.....I feel people don't even know how to put their phones down for a little while any longer.  
  • I understand the reasoning behind it, but you as the bride and groom really only have limited control over what your guests do or bring to a wedding.  Placing the onus on you to ensure that none of your guests use a camera with a flash is unrealistic.

    Your photographer should know and understand this.  Anyone who is not willing to work around guests with flashes is being unreasonable.
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