I have a good friend that offered to shoot my wedding...
Ok, so awesome! That's great! You have someone that knows how to use a camera. Yay! Take photography off your list...check!
Now, let's break this down. What does this mean? Well, while we aren't going to bore you with 100s of stories we have heard over the years, that usually start out with "omg...I SOOOO wish I had have just used you guys...my friend....'the photographer (It's 2 years later...and we have bumped into this bride, as she didn't book our services...you know...because she had the friend...)...my friend...she shot my wedding. I STILL Have yet to see these pics! She keeps saying she is going to get to them...but I have yet to hear from her!" Or this one... "Well, my friend..she showed up 3 hours later than what I asked, and during the reception, you know, since she was my friend, was doing shots with the groomsmen all night! Everytime I asked her to come take a pic...she got upset, because I was asking her to do what she was supposed to be there doing for me...taking pictures!" And lastly, the "I hired my friend...but she brought her kids, and that was fine, but when I needed her to take pics, she was wrangling her 3 year old out of the food, during our first dance, so we didn't get any of those pics! and the pictures...they were just ok..."
Whatever the reason may be...we can tell you we have pretty much heard them all...some frome couples that didn't book us, then regretted it, or some from friends of brides that did book us and didn't want to have the same thing happen to them.
And here's the main point of the day my friends, that I want to make about this.
Bride A comes to Photographer A and says "I want to hire you to shoot my wedding. My budget for photography services is $3300+. I will play the role of Photographer A. I will refer to myself as ....I.
I fit you comfortably into a wedding photography package and we sign a contract. I am with you through the whole process, even if it's 9 months out. You put $3300+ into my hand. This is gold to me. You have trusted and invested in me. You feel super confident that my packages and photography skills meet and/or exceed your expectations. Why would I NOT pour everything I have into your day? I am going to make sure I bring ALL of my equipment....alien bees, LED lights, external flash, lots of batteries (I mean, you can't shoot without those bad boys), All of my cameras (I got alot), and anything else I know that will help me give you the best experience I can give you for what you are paying me to do your wedding. I am going to show up...hair washed, make-up on, ready to take your day by storm! I am going to strive for those night shots I know EVERYONE loves about me and spandv. I mean, come on, $3300+! I have to make sure I get all the detail shots, because those are the shots that help me create that album you've had your eye on since our initial meeting! We NEED those details! I am going to make sure all of your family are photographed, because after all, how often do families really get dressed up all together? I know they are going to want a picture at some point of themselves. I am going to organize each and every shot to make sure I walk away with 'the money shot' every time (Well as many times as I can possibly do it!). You are going to get pictures with prestigeous lighting, I am going to wow you with my sparkler pictures, you will seriously think I am magical. (It's happened, true story.) By the end of the day, I am going to leave your wedding thinking 'THIS is truly the BEST wedding I have EVER shot! I got EVERY shot they asked me for, and then some. I KNOW this is going at the top of my portfolio!"
Bride B comes to Photographer B, and says "I want to hire you to shoot my wedding. My budget is $300" I will play the role of Photographer B, and will reference myself as ... I. $300...ok.. I am thinking to myself. I can do this. Full steam ahead. Packing equipment into my car...$300...hmmmm...yeah, I don't need those lights..she won't even miss them. It's not like she has any clue I eve have these lights. I can get away with my external flash. Cool. Check. Batteries..one set should be enough. It's just me. She didn't pay for a 2nd. So it's not like I will be taking a ton of pics...1 set of batteries should be fine. No need to charge more. After all, it's only $300. Check. Do I REALLY need all 7 lenses? I mean, it will make my backpack WAY lighter if I take that 50 and 100mm out...Yeah, I'll just do that. Besides, I am really just doing this more as a favor for her. She's going to be happy just to get a professional to shoot it. Check. Wedding day is here. I didn't really have her fill out an information sheet. I mean, she's a friend of mine. Crap. I'm lost. Where is this place? I don't have an info sheet, and she's not answering her phone! And I have no other contacts from her day. urggg.....ok..phew there it is. I'm only a half hour late. No worries. She didn't purchase a full package anyways. Wedding day comes, and goes. I get in my car. My first thought is 'Well, THAT won't be one to go into the portfolio. The pics were ok. But not like 'wow!!!' that's ok. I am sure I can photoshop Soooooome to give her something amazing...right? Hmmm.... ::drives away disappointed::
Sunday rolls around, and I realize I have 3 more weddings prior to this friend I shot last night. Who actually paid real money for a package. Let me get to those first. It's ok. Said friend/bride can wait. It's not like she paid alot. She didn't even sign a contract. She hasn't a clue how long it takes to edit.
6 months later....Oh SNAP!!! I completely forgot about said friends wedding pics!!! I just got a text from her and I need to jump on them. Rush rush rush...ok...that edit job is good. ::Select All:: ::apply contract:: ::Export:: that should do it! I don't have time to edit these, especially for $300. Next!
Ok, so maybe it's not that extreme...but there are SO many possibilities that could arrise from hiring a friend to shoot your wedding.
Lost photos because they shot it for free, and didn't put as much importance in the moving to their hard drive...
Putting your wedding on the back burner because they have $3000 weddings they have to get out...after all they paid waaaay more...
So many things could go wrong. Hiring SP&V will not only put your mind at ease, but we take care of every bride that comes through our doors and hires us to do the job. Whether you spend $2400 with us, or $12,000 with us. We want you to have the SP&V experience. At the end of the wedding and after your products are in hand, we want to know that you clearly made the best choice by hiring us.