How to Save $1650 on a Wedding Photographer & How to Choose One
I have heard stories of friends in my home town paying $4000 for a photographer and I was horrified. I am of the school that surely there are up-and-coming photographers that are trying to make a name for themselves that offer beautiful photography without the hefty price tag. So that is what I set about to find.
For our wedding in Melbourne, I went to our local equivalent of Craigslist, Gumtree, and searched for a wedding photographer in a 30km radius of Melbourne. Quite a number of them popped up, most without a listed price. I clicked on the listings that I liked the look of and opened them in a new tab. I went through the tabs and closed any ones that I really didn't like the look of. I had perhaps seven tabs left open. If they had websites, I checked out their portfolios on their websites.
Here is some examples of some photography that I would say yes to:
Good photography example one (above)
Good photography example two (above)
And here is some photography that I would say NO to:
Cheesy photography example one (above)
Cheesy photography example two (above)
I guess photography is quite personable, but, I'm taking most people like natural non-staged documentary type photography that catches the mood and emotion.
Of my top 7 photographers, I at this stage contacted my four least favourite. Why my least favourite? So I can gauge the appropriate pricing and see what a fair negotiating point is for my top three photographers. This is the exact email that I wrote them...
Hi Kleyton, Love your photography... so natural and captivating! We found you on gumtree. We are organising a picnic wedding at the botanical gardens on Sunday Jan 22, 2017. We are having Kubb, life size Connect Four and life size Jenga. What price could you offer for the photography? I can offer cash payment if that helps. With best regards,
Photographers love shooting something different and interesting, so if you are having a unique wedding, tell them what they want to hear.
At this point, I got a few offers back, one that was $1000 and one that was $1400. Both for a 4 hour session. I decided that a price that I was comfortable with was the $1200 to $1300 range.
At this point, I set out to contact my top 3 favourite photographers, telling them what my budget was. I just added our budget to the above email.
Love your photography... so natural and captivating!
We found you on gumtree.
We are organising a picnic wedding at the botanical gardens on Sunday Jan 22, 2017.
We are having Kubb, life size Connect Four and life size Jenga.
We have a budget of $1000 for a half day package. Would this be workable for you at all? I can offer cash payment if that helps.
With best regards,
I sent the email out and within an hour I heard from the what would be the photographer that we would choose for the day. Although her website listed $2650 for a half day package, she was agreeing to shoot our day for $1000 because she loved the sound of it! Over email, we set up a date for a phone call. During our call, we decided to go ahead.
Here are some examples from the photographer that ended up capturing our wedding.
Chosen photography example one (above)
Chosen photography example two (above)
Beautiful, ey? And that is how I saved $1650 on our wedding photography.