The oh so famous question that we didn’t understand either until we became wedding photographers ourselves. This blog is not meant to make you feel stupid by any means. It is simply to shed light on a topic a lot of people may not understand why simply “clicking a button” is worth so much. It is also meant to explain why those price tags are more than worth it. So here we go.
A lot of people dont understand the high price tags wedding photographers charge for their services. But we want to clarify oneeeee important thing: Photography is NOT just clicking a button all day long. There is more than goes into it like:
Keeping up with multiple inquires and emailing back and forth to establish a good price point.
This alone can take hours out of a photographers day to day life. Time = Money.
Going out to location scout possible places for engagements sessions or wedding day locations.
This is also time + gas used to find the best places for you!
Actually shooting engagement or wedding day!
Engagement session may be a few hours but a wedding day is a long day with little breaks. They are with you every step of the way to ensure you get the pictures that freeze memories you will look back on for years to come.
Many times the only time they have a chance to sit down and take a breath is during dinner. And even when the day is done for them, they still go home and secure all of your photos.
Post Wedding Day
Once the wedding day ends, the photographers job does not. They must upload and store your photos in VARIOUS places to assure your pictures are safe. This equipment is not cheap (more on that in a bit). One can easily look through thousands of photos and carefully select the most perfect ones and edit EVERY. SINGLE. ONE. to their style. The style you fell in love with and sure it is perfect.
THIS ALONE takes weeks. They may even be working on more than one wedding project at a time.
Once photos are delivered few weeks later, they still have to blog the wedding to be able to market for future clients. Blogging take a few hours as well.
People want to know who they are paying a lot of money for. So showing up on various social platforms, is something they have to put time into to assure they are getting more amazing clients like yourself!
Ok yea yea TIME TIME TIME. So what? Wait there’s more. Here is a very boring but very important description of how much they spend to make your memories happen.
Camera (just one) $800-$4,000
A lot of photographers even carry two a piece to get different shots with different lengths and to assure they get every shot recorded.
Editing Software $150/year
Client Management Programs $400/ year
This is to organize the incoming inquires, keep track of expenses, send out contracts, deliver invoices. Like a virtual assistant.
Hard Drives $80-$300 each
Usually need at least 3 if not more and once they fill up, buy them again.
Memory Cards $30-$200 each
This is what will literally hold what you are paying for. Better memory cards = better assurance what you paying for is safe.
Marketing $200- THOUSANDS
This ranges from ads on Facebook, Instagram, Google, Website, Emails, freakin Billboards if you wanna get crazy.
Website $200 to $10,000
Websites are a yearly subscription yes and can be basic but when you put work into making a website look good, clients are attracted to it (cuz weren’t you???) and are more willing to spend money on the service.
Hiring someone to create a gorgeous website could easily run $10K and that is was elevates themselves as a business.
Travel $500 to $2,000
Maybe, you aren’t getting married where you or the photographers lives. Travel cost money too boo!
Even a simple engagement session is: gas, food for the day, possible parking fees, etc. It deducts from the cost of the session.
Taxes ?????? You already know
Photography is a business. And like any business, we have to pay taxes which can become a pretty hefty charge.
Education $100- $5,000+
A good photographer will never think they know enough. They will continue to learn in order to BETTER SERVE YOU as the client.
Workshops (think conventions/seminars for photographers) can easily be $1,500 to $3,000 to attend and learn more about the industry, how to market, how to better serve you and elevate their portfolio to showcase to you! This is not including the travel cost it takes to go to these workshops as most are out of state.
This is all the bare MINIMUM a photographer typically spends a year (if not multiple times a year) to ensure that they have the right equipment to not only photograph your session/wedding but to also deliver it and market themselves to more people like you!
I KNOW! We would have never thought sooooo much goes into it. But we do this because we know you deserve the best. You deserve to have incredible memories that will last a long time, with an experience you will actually want to remember. And this is all it takes to make it happen ya’ll.
Heres the thing: We know weddings are stupid expensive. But you ARE spending that money either way.
Wether it be on a large extravagant scale or a small one, money is being spent to document a day that doesn’t always happen. To document a moment in your lives that will start a new chapter for the both of you.
And if you are spending so much time and money into making it look good, don’t you want to be able to have something to remember it by other than your own memories that COULD fade away with time?
Photos will be something you can share with friends and family who were there and those that couldn’t make it.
You can share these with your children and your children’s children of when you were young.
They will remind you years down the road of why you decided to even plan the day: because you wanted to celebrate your love with your person
Thats plenty of reason to want to spend the money towards a good photographer that you will love working with, is professional, delivers your photos in a timely fashion and creates something epic for you to remember.
And there’s always going to be a photographer you love that fits your price point. memories are valuable so don’t advice you to cheap out to “get pictures” and end up regretting it.
A LOT of people wish they would have dedicated more of their budget to a good photographer and if you should splurge on something, one of those things should be on the photographer!
Look at us, we are priced on the more affordable side but we don’t suck! And we can sure as heck guarantee we will do our VERY BEST to make sure you have an amazing day with beautiful pictures.
Research research research for someone you love, within budget, that you know can deliver what you want. Because dude it’ll be worth it.