Friday Happy Hour: Why Wedding Photogs’ Prices Are “Wack” & Other Top Headlines

Friday Happy Hour: Why Wedding Photogs’ Prices Are “Wack” & Other Top Headlines

There were a lot of news headlines and blog titles that caught our eye this week. The first, “Why Wedding Photographers Prices Are ‘Wack’” raised a fair amount of eyebrows around here. Others, like “McDonald’s Twitter Campaign Goes Horribly Wrong,” were funny but sad in their own right. Read our full roundup below and let us know what you’ve read lately.

Why wedding photographers’ prices are “wack”

Nikki Wagner over at PetaPixel captured this gem of a craigslist ad earlier this week:

The bride-to-be posted this raving rant to let the world know that she’s upset because charging $3,000 for a wedding photographer is “wack,” since all they do “is hang out at a wedding taking tons of photos and editing…making so much money its crazy.”

Hey wedding photogs – did you realize that what you’re charging to photograph a wedding is like taking “someones WHOLE MONTH paycheck for one flippen day of photos?” I’m guessing this is going to cause somewhat of an uproar among wedding photographers, but it does point to a larger issue at hand, that wedding clients sometimes fail to see the value in good photography. So go ahead, tell us how you really feel – what you would say to this (dare we say) bridezilla?

“Water” gymnasts take really cool photos

We’ve really enjoyed watching our college, university, and high school membership-base grow in recent years, especially when we get fantastic photographers like the team at Brigham Young University. These guys not only sell great athletic and academic images – they’re also a lot of fun. BYU Photo is currently showcasing a really cool project where photographers shot BYU gymnasts performing different poses and jumps, while splashing water on them so it goes flying off in different directions.

Photo by BYU Photo

Photo by BYU Photo

Photo by BYU Photo

The results were awesome, and they put together a whole blog post and behind the scenes video on how they did it. It’s definitely a unique take on promoting school gymnastics! Check out more of college sports photos on PhotoShelter here.

Take the new Vimeo for a spin

Sure, we’re excited for the improvements that Vimeo will be rolling out soon. But what we’re even more jazzed about is their beautifully produced video promoting the new version. It’s just…so well done. Which I guess makes perfect sense for a company dedicated to launching and sharing videos. Go see for yourself.

Photographing the State of the Union address

Washington DC photojournalist and political photographer Pete Marovich was kind enough to share his images from Obama’s State of the Union address on January 24th. In a blog post alongside his images, Pete gives us his behind-the-scenes take on the whole event, from the heightened security to the setup of the Senate Press Photographer’s Gallery. Check out his full story here.

Photo by Pete Marovich

Photo by Pete Marovich

Photo by Pete Marovich

Twitter campaign gone terribly wrong

Just as we were posting 7 Photo-Related Tweets That Will Grab Attention, we caught site of a Twitter campaign gone terribly, terribly wrong. Last week McDonald’s started promoting a new hashtag, #McDstories, that was meant to draw attention to the brand’s guarantee of fresh produce (ha). It quickly backfired, however, when users started using the hashtag to share their bad McDonald’s stories (see a full collection here):

What’s the moral of the story here? We could say something about using caution when trying to start any kind of promotional campaign over social media, but I think it has something to do with this.

Help Matthew Oldfield help others

PhotoShelter member and conservation, environment, and development photographer Matthew Oldfield is embarking on personal and charitable journey to Sulawesi and Sumatra this February. The purpose of his trip is to complete three different projects for nonprofit organizations focused on environmental conservation and human development in these areas.

However, these nonprofits aren’t commissioning Matthew – he is doing it on his own accord, aspiring to support their missions with his photography. For that reason, Matthew has turned to crowdfunding the expenses of his projects, but without using go-to sites like Kickstarter or He’s doing it all on his own, and needs the community’s help to reach his goal of raising $2,000.

Read more about Matthew’s projects on “Trash Mountain”, the Leprosy Settlement, and the Orangutan Conservation Program, and learn how you can help here.

Photo by Matthew Oldfield

Capturing Year of the Dragon celebrations in Beijing

Photojournalist and PhotoShelter member Keith Bedford and fellow photographers/videographers Jonah M. Kessel, Paul Morris, Kit Gillet, and Jim Fields worked together to capture the celebrations of the Lunar New Year in Beijing. Monday marked the start of the Year of the Dragon, and the team produced a great video that was posted on The New York Times  website. Congrats to these guys for capturing the spirit!

How to capture the perfect moment – Matthew Jordan Smith

Celebrity photographer Matthew Jordan Smith wrote a really nice post on his blog this week about capturing the perfect moment, specifically in portrait photography. “Whenever I’m doing a shoot I often look for moments when my subject is unaware of my camera and just being themselves,” he writes. “These are often the most special moments of the day and if you are aware you will be rewarded with incredible images.” In the post he shares a particularly special photo of actor Christian Slater, so go take a look.

Photo tour in Cuba

Tod O’Driscoll, PhotoShelter member and documentary photographer, is leading an 8-day photographic tour to Cuba in April with instructor Otto von Munchow. The tour is open to all levels and interests, and is a unique opportunity because the travel company has a license that allows Americans to legally enter Cuba. The deadline to sign up is February 10, so check out Cuba Photo Tour to find out more.

That’s all for now – have a good weekend!

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There are 3 comments for this article
  1. georgia at 5:26 am

    Hey there!
    i just thought i would share this with my fellow photographers.
    My daughter is building a coupon website that will give free exposure to shops that sell art.
    There are 6 categories in which you can enter your art: Equipment/supplies, Mixed media, Photography, illustration, Painting and printing.
    its totally FREE to sign up and post your coupon codes that link directly to your shop.
    no hidden fees or small print. Hope i can bring us some more business.
    Here’s the link :

  2. Sandy at 8:33 pm

    Regarding the bride-to-be who thinks $3000 is a lot to charge someone to do wedding photography. As a new photographer, I am continuously shocked to think how naive I used to be when it came to professional photography. I used to think that photography was ridiculously expensive. Here are some things I never considered….
    1. Equipment costs a LOT of money (Camera, lenses, flashes, batteries, lighting, backdrops, etc., etc., etc)
    2. Studio overhead costs a LOT of money (monthly rent, insurance, employees, etc.)
    3. Websites and advertising cost a LOT of money
    4. Pre-planning takes a LOT of time and time is money.
    5. Post-production takes a LOT of time, and time is money.
    6. Training (Photoshop, Lightroom, etc.) takes a LOT of time and a LOT of money.
    7. Perfecting your art takes a LOT of time and a LOT of money. There is a LOT more to taking wedding photos than just showing up and shooting.
    8. Dealing with difficult people causes a lot of stress, so we have to price high enough to make it worth our while.
    9. I’m new at this, and I’m sure there’s a whole lot more that I haven’t even mentioned.

    There is much more to the skill of photography than just showing up and shooting and doing a little post-editing. I’m just sorry it took me getting into the profession to “get it”. I totally admire wedding photographers, and I can tell you one thing, I wouldn’t do it for $3K. I have a friend who charges $10K. She is amazing, and she deserves every penny.

  3. avisioncame at 9:29 am

    I am so sick of photographers bitching about “how much stuff costs” and “editing is very labor intensive”

    Equipment is basically a one time buy, and if you are making 3k a shoot, shouldn’t be a big deal if you are careless enough to break something.

    I have done a lot of weddings and I seriously do not think in this digital age that a photographer should charge 3k unless they are out of this world talented, or you get an amazing photo package (still expensive).

    In the days of film you could charge that much because lets face it, there were real photographers then! Now anyone can pick up a camera and the camera does all the work for you.

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