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WR- Is this a horrible idea?

So with a little less than 8 months to go FI and I are looking for a photographer. The woman we used for our engagement pics doesn't do weddings any more, so she is out. We found a girl (a friend of a friend) that is into photography and takes some good pictures, but she has never done a wedding before. This freaks me out!! But she would only charge $500. And I do like her pictures. And she would bring with a second photog for free. We CAN spend more than that on photography. But, why do it if she can do just as good of a job. I don't know what to do. We found a few other photographers who have done numerous weddings, but they are all in the 1500-2000 range. Which is fine, but I don't really see much of a difference in quality. Other than that they have done weddings.

Okay, done rambling. Here is the girls photography fb page: http://www.facebook.com/#!/pages/KelliMariePhotography/240525489299625 Specifically look at the engagement shoot she did since that is a 'couple' one.

Here is another one that we love but is more than a thousand dollars more:http://www.elisabethannphotography.com/

What would you do??

Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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Re: WR- Is this a horrible idea?

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    Both pictures look really good. I would be worried about the friend's lack of experience though. Will she get all of the shots you want?

    Have you met the other photographer?


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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_wr-this-horrible-idea?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special Topic Wedding BoardsForum:136Discussion:ea7340f3-4bff-4947-88ce-3fb931513d49Post:4ecc3e47-125c-41ff-a7dc-64da8ce4dc7c">Re: WR- Is this a horrible idea?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Both pictures look really good. I would be worried about the friend's lack of experience though. Will she get all of the shots you want? Have you met the other photographer?
    Posted by bethsmiles[/QUOTE]

    Nope, I have not met either photographer. Both of them do engagement sessions, so we'll do those. I suppose if the engagement session totally sucks we could always change our photog...
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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    I've always heard that one of the biggest mistakes people make is to go with a friend or acquaintance for photos just because it will save them money. Remember, these pictures are going to be the biggest thing you have to remember your wedding. You have to decide the importance of photos for you.  If she has never done a wedding before, then she really doesn't necessarily know the key shots she needs, etc...

    If your photos are not at the top of your priority list and you are comfortable with her lack of expertise, then go with the friend. Personally, I wouldn't. But that is because FI and I decided that photography is one of our priorities, so we don't mind spending a little more on it.
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    bethsmilesbethsmiles member
    First Anniversary First Comment First Answer 5 Love Its
    edited January 2012
    I agree with everything swhite said.  I actually like the friend's photography better than the professionals but I would be worried about her getting all the shots you want. Who would be the second photographer she would bring because that could really influence the whole decision. I do think it is worth meeting with both photographers.


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    Good thoughts. Yeah, photography is really important to us since it is the only thing we'll have to remember the day afterwards. But I really love her photography. I'm just not certain she will know what pictures we need which does worry me.
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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    My instinct is to go ahead and go with the acquaintance. I feel for this girl because it's like finding a job right now, everyone wants experience, but how is she supposed to get experience if no one will hire her. 

    But, I do agree that at the end of the day, after the cake is gone and the food is eaten and everyone has gone home and moved on, you as a couple have those pictures. To play devil's advocate again, though, most of my friends have very few framed pictures from their wedding in their homes, and the ones that are their favorites tend to be the candids taken by guests during the reception (i.e. not the formal row of parents/grandparents/bridal party pictures taken by the photog). 

    Is there any way to get someone a bit more experienced to back her up? Or hire one of the more experienced photogs, but also offer to let her come and take pictures as well (maybe for a small amount, or if she wants to do it for free for experience-though check with the other photog so you aren't stepping on any toes). I feel like there could be a way to have her involved but not have the entire fate of the wedding pictures on her shoulders. Good luck.
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    In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/special-topic-wedding-boards_not-engaged-yet_wr-this-horrible-idea?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Special%20Topic%20Wedding%20BoardsForum:136Discussion:ea7340f3-4bff-4947-88ce-3fb931513d49Post:c9e82222-0eea-4234-9f12-b1953109f849">Re: WR- Is this a horrible idea?</a>:
    [QUOTE]Good thoughts. Yeah, photography is really important to us since it is the only thing we'll have to remember the day afterwards. But I really love her photography. I'm just not certain she will know what pictures we need which does worry me.
    Posted by polkadot111[/QUOTE]

    <div>
    </div><div>I would suggest this for a professional as well, but whoever you go with make sure you give them a list of people you really want photographs of, and a list of moments you really want to capture. I don't think it's at all too micro-managey if you specify that you'd like some candids during dancing, or any special moments they catch between the two of you during dinner (looking at each other/or sweet glances, not you chowing down or anything, haha).  You shouldn't have to chase the photog down during the day to get what you want, but you can sort of pre-prepare them for the images you'd like to get if possible. </div>
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    I do agree with what swhite said, but if it is going to save you over 1k I think it's well worth it. I like her pictures, and I'm sure she will work harder than most experienced photogs you could hire. If you are going to go with her I would make sure to come up with a list of "must have" photos, discuss the "look" you want in your pictures, and make sure she has all of the equipment needed!
    5/27/12
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    All professionals have to start somewhere. If no one hired her for a wedding, how would she ever get wedding experience? She's shown that she can take beautiful pictures with great post-editing -- I think her pictures are wonderful! I'd definitely be willing to have her take photographs at a wedding.

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    I'm cheap.... So I'm all for paying less. Pictures are nice, but it won't be the only way to remember your wedding: you'll have each other.
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    I feel like you get what you pay for in photography.  When I was looking for photographers, the difference between the $1,000 and the $3,000* was like person with a nice camera and a profession photographer.  It was crazy.  I would never have someone who had never done a wedding do my photography, but only because photography is one of the most important things to me on my wedding day.  I do like the $500 girl more but there are no wedding pictures.... It all depends on what you are comfortable with.  Are you willing to possibly have terrible wedding pictures?  If not pay more, it makes a difference.

    *I also realize this price is relative to CA’s economy

    "Love is not affectionate feeling, but a steady wish for the loved person's ultimate good as far as it can be obtained"-C.S. Lewis

    Married! May 27th, 2012

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    edited January 2012

    This is a tough one. I don't know if I would be OK with a photographer that has never done weddings before but I really like the engagement pics she did. Also, like a few other people said, everyone's gotta start somewhere. So I'm not really being helpful lol but I like her photography and might wanna give her a chance!

     




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    Hmm... Thanks for all of the thoughts!! I set up a meeting with another photographer who is much more expensive, but so much better (and more experienced!) than the other photographers. So we'll see! Everyone is booking up, so we need to pick someone in the next few weeks. Thanks ladies!
    Used to be bourgehm. +1,500 posts. Silly knot
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    I know I'm late to the party, but I wouldn't go with someone who hasn't done a wedding before if you can afford someone with more experience. Photography is one place I refuse to compromise for - the photos last forever, so you want them to be good.

    FI's brother had a family friend shoot his wedding (it was free or almost free). The friend is a good portrait photog, but had never shot a wedding, and it showed. The photos are not good. I would be so heartbroken if that had been my wedding. 
    Wedding Countdown Ticker

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    I'm late to the party too but here's my two cents (as someone who shot weddings from 2007 to 2009)

    Weddings are a whole different breed when it comes to photography. They're pretty fast paced, and a lot of the moments can't be repeated. My favorite wedding shots are usually candid... the bride laughing at something a guest is saying to her, children dancing during the reception, the facial expressions of women as the bouquet is being tossed. The cheesy "smile and look at the camera" shots are alright, but it's nice to have variety.

    This girl could be an awesome photographer for weddings, there's just no way of knowing that until she does it a couple times. Has she ever been a second shooter for a wedding? Second shooting is pretty much like training for the wedding photo business... you learn what shots are needed, how to pose people (including non model-esque ones), how to change camera settings and lenses QUICKLY, etc.

    Equipment is also important... is she using a built in flash or is she bouncing a flash off the wall/ceiling? Does she have a lens that can take good low-light photos without blinding everyone with constant flashes during the ceremony? Does she know how to blend in with the background (and not block the view of guests or irritate people during the ceremony/reception).

    It's really up to you whether or not you want to take the risk, I'd talk to her and ask a bunch of questions about what she has/hasn't done, and if you hire her I'd make sure she has a contract stating when you can expect photos after the event, whats included with the price, etc.
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    wink0erinwink0erin member
    First Anniversary First Comment 5 Love Its Name Dropper
    edited January 2012
    Also... if she has prior experience with events I'd be more likely to risk it than if she has only done portraits. I can't get the facebook link to open on my phone so I can't check it out for myself (keeps going to my regular news feed on the mobile site, grr)




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    I'm in the same situation... Have the girl who did our STD pics do the wedding (she has only done one other wedding) for about $500 or pay up to $3000 for 2 pros all day?

    I will say that the friend of a freind's pics are very cute and natural. But, so are the pros, and she does have more experience. I would just decide how you feel about the price difference.  Good luck!
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