Friendly Wedding Photography

On the day of your wedding, as you walk down the aisle, you plan to remember that very moment forever. But, when old age starts to set in and those images in your mind are no longer quite so sharp, you’re glad you invested heavily in having high quality, professional pictures taken at your wedding to permanently record that moment you can’t quite picture anymore.

However, that investment can run up to 30% of your wedding budget. Since it is easy to tell the difference between low quality and high quality pictures, professional photographers have the leverage to charge up to $40 or $45 per print, a huge jump from the $15 per print an amateur photographer might charge. However, when you skimp on the dough, you skimp on the quality. So, you’re left with quite a conundrum: go with the amateur photographer and forego the expense (and possibly also the memory), or agree to the high prices and bask in the glow of the glossy prints.

There is a happy medium between the two. If you have decided to keep the photography portion of your budget to a minimum, just ask a friend or relative (preferably one with some photography experience) to snap the pictures at the wedding rather than hire an amateur. Not only will your friend/relative be more than happy to do the married-couple-to-be a favor, but he or she will also feel blessed to have been asked to participate in the celebration. Taking the pictures and putting together a photo album can even be this person’s wedding gift to you!

Even if you don’t have a friend or relative with any photography experience, there are still several advantages to having someone close to you take all the pictures.

One, you can trust this person to take pictures of the right people at the right time. This person knows you and knows what to look for, so no time is wasted and no unnecessary pictures are taken that yield unnecessary costs. Guests at your event will be happy to smile for the camera when they know a trusted friend or relative is behind the lens, and the joy your friend feels by being at your wedding will be seen in the pictures he or she takes.

Second, there is a certain intimacy in having a friend or relative take your pictures. This unique memory will truly offset any lagging in the quality of the actual picture. When you take the wedding photos out 25 years later, instead of examining the color or resolution of the print, the quality of the memory is what will be forefront in your mind.

Third, paying an amateur or professional photographer when the pictures aren’t good is incredibly frustrating. However, if a friend or relative took the pictures, you will have not lost any money, since the pictures were taken as a gift or as a favor by your friend or relative.

Last, if you’re still worried about the quality of the pictures, just make sure whomever you asked to take the pictures does so with a digital camera. Having a friend take your pictures with a digital camera really gives you a lot of control over the pictures you will get. This way, you can see every picture taken immediately and can ask for ones to be reshot or deleted. Plus, not only will you have the ability to keep the pictures on your computer and email them to all your friends and family, but you also have the option to print them out at a fraction of the cost a professional photographer would charge.

Hiring a professional photographer to take the pictures at your wedding is one thing; if you want the highest quality pictures, then go with a reputable photographer. However, if you seek quality without a price tag, then ask a friend or relative who will intimately capture the essence of the ceremony but won’t make you pay for crappy reprints.

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Filed under: Photography — vicky at 12:40 pm on Friday, July 25, 2008

Daytime Wedding

While there is much to be said for having a wedding at night – where you and your guests can dance under a transparent tent and almost see the stars, or where your guests are eating dinner at 10pm and by the time you and your new husband are able to retire to the newlywed suite, you are too tired to consummate – planning a wedding for the daytime can be just as elegant and memorable but for half the cost.

There are several advantages to having a wedding during the day rather than at night. First, having a wedding reception in the afternoon allows for plenty of time to celebrate with your guests afterward. When the reception is over, there is still time for people to “post-party” or come together in the evening, so it truly feels like a day-long celebration. Second, since the reception will be done at a reasonable hour, you will have plenty of alone time with your new spouse and won’t be too beat to enjoy it. Of course, walking down the aisle earlier in the day is also an ideal way to avoid those hours of cold feet anxiety that typically come from waiting around all day for the wedding to start.

What makes a day wedding inherently less expensive than a night wedding is just the nature of the time of day the wedding will take place. For example, at many restaurants a lunch menu is usually cheaper than a dinner menu, because lunch is usually seen as the more casual meal of the day. In Europe and in other parts of the world, however, lunch is viewed as the most important meal of the day – - so you should either adopt this view when planning your day wedding, or you should plan to get married in Paris.

Perhaps the greatest cost savings to having a wedding during the daytime is the idea of having the wedding reception outside. A night wedding that takes place outside is just asking for mosquitoes to bother your guests. During the day, however, you don’t need an expensive tent to keep the bugs at bay nor do you need fancy tablecloths and décor that really drive the bill high. Instead, you can opt to turn the wedding into a BBQ and set up picnic tables with less expensive table cloths. While this is less fancy, your wedding will focus on the fun, great food, and spirit of a BBQ theme. Or, if you would like the wedding to be as formal as possible, you can still have all the beautiful decorations and covered chairs, less the cost of renting a ballroom at a hotel.

One aspect of having a day wedding that immediately brings the cost down is the clothes. Whether inside or outside, a day wedding will not usually require black tie attire, which means less expensive bridesmaids’ dresses and most certainly a less pricy, more simple wedding dress for you. Simple, let me remind you, does not equate to ugly or boring; all simple means is a beautiful dress you love less the frills, bells and whistles that usually add all the dollar signs. Furthermore, your guests will feel more comfortable in more casual garb, and the dancing and eating will be much less stiff.

To put on a fabulous wedding that is both memorable and reasonable, let the sun lead the way and shine on your daytime celebration.

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Filed under: Wedding Planning — vicky at 12:39 pm on Friday, July 25, 2008