A few weeks ago, Brides.com released a post that told couples that they didn’t need to feed their photographers during the wedding (along with other vendors). This sent the wedding photography world into a tail spin of hate, anger and so much name call. Rather than point fingers, I thought I’d write out a list of what your photographer needs from you to make some awesome images.
Let loose! Be yourself. Have fun. Cry. Dance. Repeat.
Seriously, just go have a blast. Real emotion, interaction and joy makes for the best photos.
This is really important. If you’re not hiring a day-of coordinator, at least have a point person who is running the day. You want this person to be strong, poised and to enjoy being in charge. They are your buffer for the day. They are there to answer questions, but more to deflect those questions away from you so that you just get to enjoy. From a photographer’s perspective, we love these because they help us keep on schedule, can wrangle family for photos and help us just worry about the photos. Any wedding photographer will tell you about the time they had to wear multiple hats on a wedding day and how that just makes it harder to focus on our primary objective, which is to make images.
Know Your Priorities
You’ve spent a lot of time planning. Things are going to go great, but the better we know what you care about. The wedding photos are going to tell the story of your day. So, I want to photograph the stuff you care about. We will bend over backward to make sure that stuff is covered first, foremost and with the most care.
Food makes everyone happy. I’m not picky about what I eat (except that I’m a vegetarian, but that’s a different thing altogether). You just got married and are sitting down for a few minutes of a breather with your newly minted partner for life. That is the exact time I want to be eating too. I’m never going to make photos of you mid-bite of Caesar Salad, so it’s a perfect moment to be tucked away. This little break is vital to give the photographer a breather, a little sustenance, time to change batteries and all the other little steps we need to be prepared for the rest of the evening. I do want to thank the couples who have given us a seat around tables at weddings, but honestly, I’d rather eat in the kitchen. Besides eating, those few minutes of down time are so important to be ready for the rest of the night.
I do have one little request to buffet weddings. It would be really amazing if you could provide a plate of food for the photographers. Please don’t read this as I’m a rockstar asking for just blue M&Ms, but rather as someone who wants to respect you and your guests. My job is to take photos of the couple’s day. As I mentioned, I want to be eating when you are. To do that, it means I have to be in line at the buffet just a minute after you. I love talking to Aunt Edna, but it always is really awkward standing next to her in line as we wait to snag some pasta.
List of family Combinations
We have all stood for family portraits that take way too long. My goal is to do them as fun and fast as possible. If I have a list of who needs to be together, we can fly and get you back to the party. Personally, I love my lists to be in the from of titles, rather than names. I love meeting everyone, but my memory banks have some faulty hard drives when it comes to names (I once forgot my own roommate’s name….. His name is also Joe). So, if we can just shout for “Mother of Bride” or “Groom’s Cousins,” things can really go quickly.
These are just a few little thoughts from a wedding photographer on what makes my day flow. That said, the onus is not on you to give me this information. I’m going to talk to you before the wedding and ask you all these questions. Communication is key to a good wedding (and really to a good marriage).
JTobiason Photography | What Your Photographer Needs From You | Seattle Wedding Photographer | Joe@JTobiason.com