Surprisingly I’ve thought hard about this topic. Initially my thought, as a photographer is, it’s obvious isn’t it? Of course you need a photographer, what a ridiculous question?! But actually, why do you really need a photographer, let alone a professional photographer, that potentially eats up a good slice of your wedding budget. I’ve broken down why I believe photography is important for your wedding day, and then why a professional photographer should be near the very top of your list.
Why is photography important?
A photograph is so much more than the sum of its physical form. A photo has the power to create an emotional state in us; it can take us back to an exact moment, where we can feel the heat or smell the rain, we can hear the background noise, we can feel the emotion in our chests, we can recall what we were thinking. Photographs have the power to connect us back to a memorable experience, one we want to recall and relive.
I’ve come to learn that time is one of the most precious commodities there is. It’s the one thing we can’t change, or buy, or get more of. Photography is our key to accessing our past, our memories, it is one of the few ways we can freeze time. As time passes, the memories fade, and people pass us by, your photographs are a precious connection to this past and all the experiences we so carefully and lovingly created with our loved ones.
Why is wedding photography important?
This will be one of the most important days of your life. It is the marking of a new chapter, of the coming together of two people, two families and the start of a new one. Your extensive planning for this day; the wedding outfits, the venue, the decoration, the food and drink, the music; it will all be a unique representation of you both as a couple and how you wish to mark your wedding day. Such an event, your mark in history, must be documented, so that it is recorded and never forgotten, and can be shared with future generations.
It is likely to be a rarity, to have all your chosen friends and family in one place for just one day. Having them there to witness and share in your joy of declaring your love and commitment to someone is very unique indeed. As you sign your names in the legal register in front of all your witnesses it is important to fully document this union, visually too.
It is a sad fact, but soon enough memories will fade and subtly change. You will slowly begin to forget the minor details such as the delicate flowers in your bouquet, or the particular shade of the bridesmaids dresses, then the bigger details such as the timeline of events, or particular guests; and then large gaps will appear maybe from the whole morning up until you said your vows. It is human nature to be able to more easily recall the negative feelings such as the nerves (it’s called the negative bias theory), so it’s even more important to document the events as they occurred so that the whole beautiful picture can be recalled with ease at any time.
The photographs will be one of the few tangible things that you will have after the day, once the bills are all paid, the flowers have perished, the cake is eaten and the dress is packed away. It will be the one thing you can lovingly store away or proudly display, but then access at any time you wish and transport yourself right back to the excitement of the moment, as if you’d just clicked your fingers with your red sequin shoes on.
Why is a professional wedding photographer important?
Our work begins long before your wedding day. They will be continually training and learning and improving their services. They will work with you to listen and understand what is important to you and what you’d like captured from your wedding day. There might be a particular tradition or guest you must have photographed - they’ll understand that and put it at the top of their list. They will be able to share their experience and knowledge on weddings and can advise you on how to help you plan a smooth wedding day. From timing plans to things not to forget, they are an untapped wedding-expert, use them!
They will have insurances in place to cover you, your guests and themselves in the event of any accidents or unforeseen incidents. They’ll have spent considerable time in investigating and implementing a work-flow that involves how to capture, store, process and archive your precious photographs. So there are no chances of photographs getting erased or lost. They will have contingency plans for illness, bad weather, flat tyres, you name it they’ve probably faced it or have a plan for it.
On the actual wedding day, it’s so much more than just taking a few photographs, from the convenient or easy parts of the day. It’s about capturing the whole story, whatever it takes. It’s about being in the tight, dark corners, or the muddy fields or the awkward positions - to make sure it’s all captured.
We pay attention to the details you’ve spent months sweating over. The creation, curation and choosing of all the details. We know you want these things recorded and we’ll do that, with bells on.
Knowing what to do when. Shooting many weddings gives us that advantage of knowing what is likely going to happen next and where to stand to capture it. Being in just the right place at just the right time, reading the room and the emotion, knowing the venue and the lighting/weather variables. We’ll know how long things should take, so can help or advise with timings for your day and what to do when. With all our experience we also know what shots you’re likely to want, and the ones you didn’t even realise you needed.
Knowing how to get the camera-shy guests or ninja-fast children to smile or be captured for one fleeting second. Being a good director of people, to enable me to get the shots you desire, and capture the day in the way you’ll love. Then being able to disappear into the background during the ceremony or morning preparations.
Having the correct equipment to draw upon if needed - a reflector to improve the light, a flash to add some light, a lens to capture the detail in the ring and a lens to capture the width and scale of the beautiful venue grounds, and just the right umbrella to capture rainy shots with ease.
And last but not least…A helpful hand on the day (sewing, cleaning up, hair repairs, cake mending, shoe fastener…the list goes on). And usually the only person in a room to have a working pen, lighter or pair of scissors lol!
Once the wedding day is over the work doesn’t end there. Retouching any images, removing the smallest of hairs to the biggest of problems, it can all be done if needed. Sometimes we may have had some inspiration for a shot that needs some clever photoshop work to realise the idea, so that will also be done now.
Delivering your photographs in a style you love, that speaks to you and reflects you as a couple and elevates your memory of your wedding. Using the best tools to make the experience a seamless and memorable one.
You’ll have the reliability of getting what you want and have invested in, when you’re promised it, and likely it will exceed your expectations by being better than you imagined and sooner than you thought. It is a pro’s job to always exceed expectations and keep striving to improve and impress.
From albums to picture framing, I can offer you a curated, tried and tested choice of trusted, market leading products so you can really enjoy and get the most out of your wedding photography. Bespoke designed, made by experts that really reflect what you stand for as a couple.
I can take care of fulfilling prints or orders from family and friends - taking the hassle away from you.
Have a special request, or lost your photographs? I store your photographs forever, so I’ll always be here to help with any requests. Maybe you want to get some new pictures framed for an anniversary, or update your family portraits, or renew your vows - my work doesn’t end at the first dance, far from it it is just the beginning.
Few things in life increase in value over time, but photography is one of them. The investment (and that’s why I confidently call it an investment and not a cost) you make on your wedding day in photography and albums and prints will hands down, year on year, increase in value. Like a one off piece of fine art or a sculpture - there will only be one wedding day, that came together in that set of circumstances, that only happened on that one day, with that one unique set of guests in a specific venue that would have evolved or maybe not even be there now. It can’t be replicated or re-created, so your wedding photography becomes so incredibly unique the ability to relive that through amazing photographs, hold the album in your hands, transport yourself back there, becomes priceless and should be valued as such.
Thank you for reading!