When last I
ranted wrote about the thoughts and search for a wedding photographer while planning a budget-minded wedding I was faced with seemingly few choices:
- Spend half our entire budget on a wedding photograher (conventional wisdom)
- Pay what we could afford but not be able to actually choose our own photographer (going with a photography group)
- Wait until a couple months before the wedding and try and score and up-and-comer on Craigslist or Facebook (last ditch before handing a friend my camera and hoping for a decent photo or two)
Seriously, that’s what the landscape looked like.
But I’m a little more stubborn than that, and I started searching afresh for someone out there who took good, no-nonsense photos without charging an arm and a leg. To do that, I did something a lot of people don’t: I went beyond the first page of search results. I clicked on every link listed in the WeddingWire photography directory and about midway through I found my glimmer of hope: Pink Shutterbug Photography.
Not only did she take straightforward photographs without a lot of over-processed filters applied, but she’s personable, quick with an email reply, and understands that not everyone has a photography budget of $2500+ but that everyone deserves decent wedding photos.
What makes her able to offer such affordable wedding packages is that she’s primarily a family photographer. She might do only one or two weddings a year, but she tells me she likes it that way–she gets to enjoy the shoots more than always wrapping up one to go straight off to another.
After a few dozen emails back and forth, we met for an in-person meeting and signed the contract then and there. I couldn’t see finding someone a better fit for our budget and we got along swimmingly. Better yet? She includes an engagement session in her package–great opportunity to work together before the actual wedding day–and delivers strictly digital files, just what I was looking for.
She wasn’t the only photographer I reached out to, of course. There was another who did her best to work with our budget but it meant one shooter for half the hours and no engagement session and was still 50% more than we really wanted to spend. We could have made it work, but I’m glad we didn’t have to.
Our engagement shoot was in January, and I’ll go into more details in another post, but here’s the teaser collage she posted on Facebook, just to give you an idea of what you can get if you really look hard enough:
It can’t be all about price, of course, but when you’re on a tight budget, price can’t be discarded from the discussion entirely. What lengths were you willing to go to, to find the vendors you needed?