These days everyone's a photographer.
Think about it.
I bet you're not more than 2 or 3 degrees of separation from someone who either just started or wants to be a photographer.
I'm not sure when it became cool to shoot weddings, but I know how it's changed the landscape.
I also know how it's changed the perception of photography.
As digital photography became the rule rather than the exception, a lot of the "fear factor" dissipated.
This meant that more and more people began trying their hand at shooting weddings.
Cameras are no longer strictly manual, and what is captured is instant rather than latent.
This, coupled with the economic slump, meant more and more enthusiasts began offering their services at incredibly discounted rates.
What better way to break into the business? More importantly, how does that affect you? I often have brides tell me their budget and their concerns over getting the right photographer who will fit into that budget.
Should they go with Company X who is just starting out, and whose work is "good enough," but includes the album? Or should they go with Company Y whose work they love, but feel they can't afford? The short answer is: Don't go over your budget.
On the other hand, are you sure Company Y is beyond your reach? Usually, the answer is, "sort of.
" Turns out, Company Y is the same rate as the other guy; they just don't include the album.
"But I want it all!" I know.
The thing you've got to ask yourself is, "at what cost?" An album can be purchased later.
A wedding cannot be re-shot.
A split-second candid can't be restaged because your photographer was looking at the last shot they took on the back of their camera.
Lastly, I'm not sure when Photoshop became a verb.
It's amazing what can be done with this software-in the right hands.
But sadly, no, everything can't be "photoshopped.
" A poor exposure can't become a great exposure post-production.
Without a doubt, it can be made acceptable, but it will never look like a properly exposed image.
For that reason, no matter whom you choose, choose them because you love them.
Choose them because they make images, not because they take pictures.
Choose them because they get great shots, not because they can get a great shot.
Choose them because their work speaks, not because they're pretty good.
I promise, you won't be sorry.