“Why pay a photographer to photograph a wedding, when your cousin has a nice camera and will do it for free?” Why should we support photography as an art form? Questions like this are common questions photographers receive when meeting with clients. And on the outside, it does look expensive, especially when added to the other costs of a wedding. But would you pay a mechanic to fix your car who has a fancy tool collection but doesn’t know how to use it? A photographer is more than just a person with a camera. A photographer knows lighting, camera settings, and most importantly a photographer knows how to get the best look from the client.

A lovely couple on a wedding day

First a wedding. My cheapest wedding package is €900 for 8 hours of coverage. And to be clear, that is very cheap in comparison to a lot of wedding photographers. But yes, it will cost more than your cousin or that random person you found on craigslist.

€900/8 = €112.50 per hour.

A decent amount per hour, you might be thinking. But, for an eight-hour wedding, plan an additional 20 hours processing images, creating albums and books, client meetings etc.

€900/28 = €32.14 per hour.

€32.00 an hour is still not too bad, right? Absolutely, assuming I’m shooting weddings each weekend or even a minimum of one a week. Like other artists such as musicians who give lessons we need to stretch it out.

When your newborn child is added to the family you will most likely take thousands of pictures on your phone that will often stay on your phone. But how lovely would it be to have a photograph sitting on the mantle or hanging on the wall that isn’t washed out with direct flash, properly color corrected, and has the whole family in it since one of the family members isn’t holding the phone?

One of the things to think about when planning your wedding is what is going to be there 20, 30, or 40 years from now. The flowers that you spend thousands on will have wilted. The cake will have been eaten. And the odds on your daughter wearing that dress at her wedding are pretty slim. What you have left is each other, the wedding rings, and the pictures.

Most artist of any type don’t make a lot of money, and we would respond that we don’t do it for the money. If we lived in a world where money didn’t matter I would probably still be a photographer because it is a wonderful experience to be involved in contributing to people’s positive memories. So please, when it comes to photography, support an artist and hire a professional.


happy ever after sign - wedding

Note: Prices listed are as of the time of the writing of this blog post. Prices might have changed since then.