Wedding Photography and Videography Forum

Photographer Debate

FI & I have recently started searching for a wedding photographer. I e-mailed quite a few & then narrowed it down to 5 to meet with. We met with the first two yesterday. We liked #1 a lot, specifically we really liked his style of photography. We also liked #2. We liked the style of her photography slightly less though. However, for approx. the same price as #1 (which included full day wedding photography & hi-res copies of the photos) we would get full day photography with 2 photographers, an engagement shoot, and a post-wedding shoot with hi-res copies of all three shoots plus save the dates. It appears that nobody else is going to be able to beat this value so now we are debating if we should pay a little more for the photographer whose style we like most or go with the better value (still good photos - and great reviews online). Also, we are unsure as to whether it's worth even meeting with more photographers after being offered that deal.

Thoughts? Any advice?

Re: Photographer Debate

  • Honestly, I would ask for how much a second photographer and an engagement session would be if bundled together for the one you like the most. I thought of it this way - this person is going to be in charge of getting the BEST photos of us for the whole day AND is going to be next to us constantly. I'd rather have someone I loved than someone than someone I liked. I saw my grandmother's photos from decades ago the other day in a closet and realized that some day, my generations would be seeing this and the photos MATTER!
  • emmyg65emmyg65 member
    1000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers First Anniversary
    Which one do you like better as a person and feel most comfortable around? Does #1 also have good reviews?
  • I would say we like them both as individuals - both really nice & easy to get along with. #1 is younger and less experienced (we're okay with that because he's extremely talented and we've love his work). He has good reviews as well, just not near as many as the other - due to experience. Also, #2 is a company that has more than one photographer so they have shot many more weddings due to that fact alone. I think if they both offered the same exact packages for the same price we would likely choose #1. The fact that we were offered the deal that we were has us hung up on #2 (whose photos we still like - they're just different from #1 - 1 has an artsy, vintage-like quality while 2 has primarily bright, bold photos). To get the same thing with #1, it would cost over $1000 more. We were thinking maybe because he's younger and less experienced there would be room for negotiation, but he works through another (more expensive) photographer who sets the prices it appears... 
  • When you say vintage-like do you mean the color or the composition of the photos? If it's the color that's just a filter added in post production, unless they are actually shooting on film.

    Personally I'd go with the cheaper more comprehensive options - BUT only if I was guaranteed to get the photog I signed with unless there was a true emergency. I'm not a fan of large corporation photo group bc they something bait and switch on the photog and you get a crappy one instead.

    Also the second shooter is very important to me. 
    I could care less about epic or post pics...but that's my personal opinion. 
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • @photokitty - good question. I don't know if I'm describing it correctly. I think you'll understand what I'm talking about if you look at this link to a few of his wedding photos:

    I had that concern with the idea of a company. We met with the owner who said that she would most likely be shooting our wedding (with a 2nd photographer) and also told us that the people working with her all have similar styles (but I'd assume some degree of individuality, right?). I guess that we should ask to have that guarantee put in a contract if we went that route. 

    I thought engagement photos could be fun and used for Save the Dates. FI, on the other hand, could care less. LoL. However, he had never heard of post pics until the other day and now he really likes the idea in case there is awful weather on the actual wedding day. Here's a question: how imperative is having a 2nd photographer? We are having a relatively small wedding - approx. 70 people I'd guess - definitely under 100 (if that makes any difference). 
  • edited May 2014
    Let's see the other photo's site. Personally I'm not blown away by Daniel's. I think that's filters and some motion blur. I am always concerned with blur, bc while it can look great in a few select photos, it can be a huge issue if it happens during "the kiss" or other key moments. I want to see consistently good, in focus, well composed shots.

    You're in NYC - you should have a plethora of options. I would continue to meet with the  other 3 and see what happens.

    I would not sign with the other gal, unless she will guarantee you get her unless there is an actual emergency. All contracts allow for a sub in an emergency (if they don't you should be more concerned bc who's gonna shoot if there's no back up plan???), but make sure you are getting the person you reviewed and met with.

    IMO - a second shooter has little to do with your guests count. It's all about second angles and backing up the primary shooter. What if someone steps in front of the primary at a key moment. What if the flash doesn't fire. It's more about ensuring you get the key moments you really want and then having options with a varying perspective.

    On the topic of after photos - yes they could be good to get if you have bad weather, but are you really going to pay to get your hair & makeup done, a new bouquet, etc - not to mention it won't feel the same and you'll know they are staged. I think these shoots are more popular bc of "trash the dress" photo shoots. It's not my thing, but it's there bc soother people are willing to pay for it. I still haven't used my couples shoot (epics or post shoot) that was included in my package - we've been married 11 months next Tuesday ;-p
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • Also you need to ask if Danny has shot any weddings as the primary shooter. I can only find 2 - one in city hall, so no reception and scaled down ceremony. And another "loft wedding" which appears very casual and non traditional. Just make sure you aren't seeing his work as a second shooter and now paying for fees as a primary without him having done anything on his own. Being the second shooter is very different from the primary - you don't have to do any of the posing and aren't under the pressure. You often don't shoot the full day, as the primary would have to pay more to have you come early and stay late. Just something else to consider as you make your choice. 
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • Here's the website for the other photographer:!/our-style/gallery

    Thank you so much for your opinions and making me think about these things! I had thought to myself "Well if our wedding isn't that big, we shouldn't need 2 photographers" so it's helpful to have you point out why it would be beneficial - I hadn't really considered any of those aspects! 

    As for the post pics - I can handle my own hair and makeup and forgo the bouquet so it wouldn't cost us extra in that aspect. I never considered doing this type of shoot but recently saw photos that a couple I know had done after their wedding (I guess it would be considered "trash the dress") and they were stunning! I figure we could get some cool shots simply because I wouldn't have to be worried about my dress getting a little dirty...since I'm sure I'll be paranoid about that the day of :-P 

    But you're right, we should keep meeting with people. I think we just got so hung up on this idea of style vs. value that it halted the entire process for us!
  • edited May 2014
    The other photog is using a lot of filters and sun flares in post production. Which is fine, just don't elect all your photos to have that level of visual impact :)

    Make sure you ask to see an entire wedding the photog who will be personally shoot your wedding has shot as the primary photog. You should not be paying primary shooter rates for someone who doesn't have the experience.

    Personally I went with a budget photog...this surprises people since I am a photog, but I knew I'd be super picky and paying more wouldn't change that. In the end I believe you need one or two really great photos. How many photos do you recall seeing of your grandparents...for me it's one posed one at the alter and a candid of them in the car. That's it, just two really happy, well composed, in focus shots. I'm not convinced the dramatic looking off in opposite directions with a nonchalant arms draped over the grooms shoulder and an attitude hip pop shot, you know the one that makes you think it's a bridal mag, are going to stand the test of time. Grandkids will probably laugh and call that pic lame, but they's love the traditional posed shot, JMHO :)
    :kiss: ~xoxo~ :kiss:

  • @photokitty - thanks for all of your advice! You have been so helpful & you're right - while I think a tiny part of me secretly wants to have some crazy editorial style photo shoot (why? I don't know) others will totally think it's lame, haha! I absolutely appreciate your opinions :)
  • lilacck28lilacck28 member
    500 Love Its 1000 Comments Fourth Anniversary First Answer
    edited June 2014
    It looks like a lot of Daniel's interior shots have been converted to black and white. That would concern me, unless he has provided a larger portfolio for you to see that show this is not the case. If not, it would suggest that he has difficulties "finding the light" in not ideal circumstances. If your wedding is going to be during the day though, this wouldn't be much of an issue. 

    I'm an artist (not a photographer) but I know just enough to be super nervous and super picky about it. I feel you on how stressful picking a photographer is! 

    If you like and prefer the intimate/ artsy feel of Daniel's photos, I think you have a lot of options in photographers (I'm near NYC, and I have seen MANY that shoot in that style) rather than going for the epic style of the second group you posted just because of price. I agree with Photokitty ... ask to see a "full wedding" to get a sense of their non epic photos.  
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