Wedding Etiquette Forum

wedding photographer- changed my mind after engagment shoot

Has anyone out there booked a photographer and then changed your mind? We had out engagement shoot and I was not happy with the photos and had a bad 'gut feeling' after that. We will only be losing our 500$ date retainer at this point. I am scared to tell them, so our wedding planner is going to mediate. Anyone out there- has this happened to you??? Any repercussions???  Thanks!!

Re: wedding photographer- changed my mind after engagment shoot

  • This didn't happen to me as we did different photogs for e-pics than we will do for our wedding.
    But if you are OK with losing the $500, I'd def. say book someone else. Photos are something (to me at least) you wouldn't want messed up on the wedding day. If they are a very important item for you and you weren't happy with the quality, I'd switch.
    Is it something not fixable (for example, if you wanted more candids than posed shots, you could discuss this with your photog prior to the wedding).
    If it was just bad overall, have your planner cancel with them and try booking someone else. YOU are paying THEM so you have a right to cancel (as long as it says you can in the contract) and hire whomever you choose.


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    Vacation
  • What didn't you like about the photos?  I had the same initial reaction when we got ours back but the more I looked through them the more I realized I just didn't like myself in them.  If it had been someone else, I would have loved them.  Does that make sense?

    But if it was the photos themselves and you had a bad feeling about the photographer, I would back out.  What does your contract say about cancelling?
  • Seeing if you like the photographer is kind of the point of the engagement shoot (or at least one of the points). Your photog is a professional, the deposit is made for the very situation you are in, that is, you want to cancel.
  • MyNameIsNotMyNameIsNot Atlanta member
    Knottie Warrior 5000 Comments 500 Love Its 5 Answers
    We didn't drop our photographer, but we did change our mind on our DJ.  He stopped returning calls/emails, and we just weren't sure he was going to show.

    You don't need to feel bad, and you don't need anyone to mediate.  This is a business decision.  Simply write an email saying "after receiving our engagement photos, we've decided to change directions and go with another photographer.  Per our contract, you are entitled to keep your $500 retainer.  Your services will no longer be needed.  Thank you for your efforts thus far."  Assuming this person is a professional, there is nothing to mediate and nothing for them to fight about.

    They may come back and ask specifically what you were unhappy about, for their own professional development.  If that's the case, offer specific items that you are unhappy with, or don't.  
  • I wouldn't do it because I can't afford to lose $500 (that's the same price as my dress).  I would try and work with the person and express what I didn't like.  I would \ try a reshoot to see if he/she can get it right.  If this person is a professional, they would want to make you happy.  

    Of course if you can afford to lose the money, then do it.  And don't feel bad.  It's business.  

    Make sure you read the fine print.  I know that after a certain date, I'll still owe the whole amount if I cancel.  
  • In Response to <a href="http://forums.theknot.com/Sites/theknot/Pages/Main.aspx/wedding-boards_etiquette_wedding-photographer-changed-mind-after-engagment-shoot?plckFindPostKey=Cat:Wedding%20BoardsForum:9Discussion:da8ceae9-1e4d-404a-b739-fcaa91a27856Post:59d6eb85-0fa1-406a-b43f-106ad48075cf">Re: wedding photographer- changed my mind after engagment shoot</a>:
    [QUOTE]We didn't drop our photographer, but we did change our mind on our DJ.  He stopped returning calls/emails, and we just weren't sure he was going to show. You don't need to feel bad, and you don't need anyone to mediate.  This is a business decision.  Simply write an email saying "after receiving our engagement photos, we've decided to change directions and go with another photographer.  Per our contract, you are entitled to keep your $500 retainer.  Your services will no longer be needed.  Thank you for your efforts thus far."  Assuming this person is a professional, there is nothing to mediate and nothing for them to fight about. They may come back and ask specifically what you were unhappy about, for their own professional development.  If that's the case, offer specific items that you are unhappy with, or don't.  
    Posted by MyNameIsNot[/QUOTE]


    This, exactly.
    image
  • Not knowing your specific concerns with the photographer makes it a little tough to give you advice, but I'll give it a shot.  If you weren't happy with the results, I would try to work things out with your photographer first.  Perhaps go over them with him (or her) and let them know exactly what you weren't happy with.  They may be able to translate your constructive criticism into something you are pleased with.  I would definitely suggest a reshoot (even a mini-session) of the engagement photos (and they should offer to do this free of charge) to see if your concerns have been corrected.  If not, then thank them for their efforts, but let them know you will be going a different direction.

    However, if you contact the photographer and they are defensive, unwilling to go over things with you, or try to charge you for a reshoot, I would definitely walk if your budget allows.  They should be professional and want to fix anything their client is unhappy with.
    Anniversary
  • edited December 2010
    This happened to me.  Same exact situation.  We paid our photog a $500 retainer fee.  She took HORRIBLE epics of us-- we were squinty in a lot of the photos (sun); my mouth was open in some because she would say "just go over there and talk to one another"; in many of the photos we were the size of ants and you could barely tell it was FI and I in the pics; she insisted that we get our photos taken by these lawn tractors even after I giae the subtle "Uhhh, ummm..." to try to be polite (in the photos we ended up looking like maintenance workers canoodling on our lunch break).

    After getting the photos back I called her and said that we had hoped for some more close-up shots.  She said that she could crop or reshoot.  I asked if we could reshoot and she said OK.  However, a day later she emailed me back  saying that she noticed a good balance of shots and didn't understand what I was saying.  I emailed her back and mentioned the squinted eyes and open mouths and she basically said, "Aren't we all our own worst critic?  I think you look beautiful or I wouldn't be proud of the photos!"  I started taking this as her not wanting to make the situation right so I started to look for a new photog (which I was entitled to do) in the mean time while this played out. 

    A couple days later I get another email from her saying that it had been brought to her attention that I was looking for another photog, and she thought that we had the relationship where I could have told her that I was looking around.  (My wedding is 9 months out, mind you.  Plenty of time for her to book another wedding on my date.)  I emailed her back telling her that we would no longer be needing her services.  I told her to keep the $500 retainer fee to pay for the $350 epic session and keep the $150 for her troubles.  She shot back a legal type email saying I created a "hostile work envrionment" and said that I needed to pay her $350 for the epic session or she would take me to court.  My lawyer sent her a letter basically saying the photos were crap, and I wasn't going to give her anymore money.  We haven't heard anything from her since, and we have a new photog.

    Hopefully your situation goes much smoother than ours did.  Sorry that was so long, but I thought I would share how breaking a contract with a vendor can go south.  GL!
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