Why Wedding Photography Costs So Much
Many jaws drop when the ears attached to them hear wedding photographer prices. Brides or grooms might take the package fee, and divide it by the number of hours the photographer will be at the wedding, and think to themselves that the resultmaybe $300 per hoursounds like an amazing, and perhaps excessive, hourly rate.
That calculation can be misleading. First, the photographer brings thousands of dollars of equipment. These days, that typically means a high-quality digital camera which costs about $3,000 a few lenses which might cost about $2,000 apiece, and then their software and hardware to handle the images, including memory cards and computers. The photographer might also bring lights, tripods and other incidental gear. With the rapid changes in technology, the camera and computer-related items need to be upgraded every three to five years.Film shooters have the additional costs of film and development.
The equipment will all be amortized over its use at many weddings, so its actually not the most expensive component of wedding photographythat would be the photographers time. What you and every other client pay the photographer adds up to his or her annual revenue, from which s/he pays for all business expenses and all living expenses.
Within each location, youll also find photographers of varying experience levels. A person just getting started in the business will likely charge less than someone with many years of experience.
Is Price A Good Indicator Of The Quality Of The Wedding Photographer
Price is not always a good indicator of the quality of a wedding photographer, it is just part of the story. Some wedding photographers could charge a lot in their first few years, but still, be relatively new to the industry and technical side of photography. I would research any potential photographer to get an idea of their photography style, cost, personality and such.
Generally speaking, a couple could spend much more than the typical average if wedding photos are important to them and they have their heart set on a specific photographer.
How Much Money Can You Earn As A Wedding Photographer
How much should a wedding photographer charge for a wedding? The answer will depend on a lot of factors.
Your region, gear, travel expenses and extra services influence your prices. We discuss these in details in our list below.
The average cost of a wedding photographer is around $2000 in the US. In general, wedding photographer prices range between $1150 and $3000. Wedding photographers in big cities tend to charge higher prices than the ones in other areas.
In the UK, wedding photographers average cost is around £1,590. This is almost the same price as in the US. Meanwhile, in Eastern European countries, wedding photographer prices are lower. The average cost of a wedding photographer is between $900 and $1130.
Why are we listing these rates? To give you a general idea about the prices wedding photographers ask for. And to make you realize that the worth of your wedding photos can vary.
Not sure where to start? Here are 13 tips to help you to determine how much to charge for wedding photography.
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Consider Including The Engagements
Engagement photos arent part of the wedding day but they can be a big help in the process. Shooting the engagement photos allows you to meet the couple ahead of time. And you learn more about how they interact with each other and what poses work for them.
For the couple, the engagement session helps them feel more comfortable in front of the camera and get to know you and your style.
Because engagement sessions are so helpful, some photographers include them in some of their packages . By including the engagement photos in the price, more couples will take advantage of the chance to work with you before the actual wedding day.
The experience of working with the same couple is beneficial for most photographers. And the extra shooting is a huge boost to new wedding photographers that may need more practice working with posing or lighting.
How Long Is Reasonable To Wait For Wedding Photos
Whats the Typical Turnaround Time? You could be waiting for your photos anywhere from 3 to 12 weeks after your wedding date, according to Connecticut-based wedding and portrait photographer Carolyn DAndrea of Tesora Photography, whose turnaround time for a full gallery is usually about five weeks.
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How Much Does A Wedding Photographer Cost
Wedding photographer prices can vary depending on many factors including your weddings location , the type of services and packages youre looking for, and your chosen photographers experience and level of expertise. In general, wedding photographer prices in the U.S. tend to range between $1,150 and $3,000, with the average wedding photographer cost hovering around $2,000.
How Much Do We Charge
Our experience with wedding photography and clients has been extremely versatile. Currently, have offered packages from 90-minute Courthouse Weddings starting near $700 all the way up to multi-day events reaching $8000+!
Of course, these are just examples of the current upper and lower bounds. The average often falls somewhere in the middle.
Of course, the actual final cost depends on all the aforementioned factors. Additionally, you can visit our page to get a rough price quote by answering three simple questions:
- The wedding date
- What city the wedding is in
- The venue of the wedding
Based on your expectations and requirements, we will customize your wedding photography package for you. This way, youll get exactly what you need and exclude what you dont need, at just the right price.
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How Much Do Wedding Photographers Cost On Average
The same internal study conducted by The Knot revealed that the average wedding photographer costs around $2400. Of course, this number is more representative of East Coast prices. The West Coast can be slightly more expensive, from $3,000 to $4,700.
Plus, its more accurate to say that these numbers represent how much people choose to spend, not how much wedding photography costs. Whats the difference?
Strictly speaking, the cost of wedding photography hinges on your budget. As youll soon see, wedding photography often includes various things that extend beyond the actual wedding as well.
As it turns out, 47% of the people are actually willing to go way over their budget and spend more on their photographer.
So, a slightly more comprehensive cost range is anywhere between $1000 to $10,000. This is not to say that the cost cant be above or below this range, but rather is a general range to give you an idea of how high and low the prices can go.
How Much Do Photographers Charge Per Photo
Photographers typically charge $25 to $250 per photo or about $75 per edited shot on average depending on their experience. A per photo pricing model includes meeting with the client, setting up, doing the photo shoot, traveling, editing, and delivering the final product in the client’s preferred medium.
Learn more about how photographers charge for a photo and understand how much time went into creating that photo. Using image-based costs creates the best pricing model when clients are expecting high-quality work reflected in just a few images.
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No Booking Fee Lump Sum Close To Or After The Wedding
This is the worst situation for both parties, but it can be quite common between friends or family type deals. Its particularly bad because the neither the couple or the photography have any incentive to hold up their end of the agreement.Pro: makes starting an agreement easy.Con: almost guarantees issues later on.
The Average Couple Wants Full
Wedding days can be long days. By the time you get ready in the morning, go through the plethora of family photos, travel from point A to points B, C, and even D and then sit down for a tasty yet lavish dinner youve probably put at least 10 if not 12 hours into the day already oh, and the party hasnt even started yet! If youre looking for full day coverage, youll want to look for packages that are at least 10 hours in length if not 12.
A lot of photographers will tell you that 8 hours is enough but for traditional wedding days it rarely is. Smaller, more intimate weddings? Sure 8 hours is perfect, but dont fool yourself into thinking your big church ceremony, park photos and 4 course dinner can all be covered in 8 hours or youll be paying an exorbitant amount in overtime fees. The cost of wedding photography in Toronto can vary as much as weddings themselves vary some weddings are smaller and some are larger ditto for the costs of your vendor services.
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What Questions Should You Ask Potential Wedding Photographer
To select the best wedding photographer, make sure to interview all the candidates before signing a contract. Since you will spend a lot of time together, you need to find a dedicated professional with their own signature style. Besides, its important to check whether you feel comfortable when communicating with a photographer in person.
If you have never interviewed anyone in your life before, make sure to create a list of simple questions that will help you understand whether a photographer can successfully cope with all assigned tasks. By asking these questions, you can narrow down your choice and find a perfect photographer more quickly.
Scaling Up Doesnt Lead To Effortless Profit Increases
Some photography businesses scale up in order to increase their profits. However, this also brings huge risks. Entrusting the biggest day of someones life to an independent contractor is incredibly risky. What if they dont show up? Get a better offer? Book their own client?
Plus, it is still only the business owner and maybe a small admin team, that has to deal with all the actual business and client management side of things. That means still the business owner commits to:
- Being on call 24/7 to respond to client inquiries the minute they hit the inbox with a personal, not automated, message.
- Doing meetings and phone calls evenings and weekends when clients are not at work.
- Dealing with the turnover of independent contractors and their training, image review and scrambling to find someone if they fail to show up to a wedding.
Either way, its fraught with risk, pressure and high stakes. And still there is a huge amount we give up in order to take on these liabilities our summer months, every Saturday in summer in a good season, plus those evenings and weekends to talk to clients.
To scale up in wedding photography means taking on so-called associate photographers. To find out more about that and exactly what it means, check out the dedicated article linked below:
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Is The Photographer The Same As A Videographer
Definitely not. Its hard enough shooting still images amid the chaos of a wedding, and videography is a different skill altogether. Expecting one team to handle both photography and videography is unrealistic, and bound to return mediocre results on both ends. Hire a videographer separately. If someone claims she can be both the photographer and the videographer for your wedding, you should seriously consider finding other people to handle those tasks.
What A Photographer Spends Their Time Doing
A photographer may charge $500 for a single hour of work. They might be lucky to get 20 clients a year, especially for a higher price point and thats if youre doing really well. Even if each client pays $4,000, you might be thinking well thats still $80,000.
And if youre in a cheaper area, maybe youre at a lower price point say $2,500. Youre servicing 32 clients per year.
Not bad in most cities. Right.
But consider this. For each hour thats paid, a photographer will probably be working at least 8 hours that arent paid. The client doesnt see whats going on behind the scenes. In fact, we only spend 4% of our working time actually shooting aka billable hours.
That $500/hour fee is nothing like a lawyer who is literally only doing one hour of work and scooping up that whole amount. A photographer is actually working so much more for each hour you see then snapping away.
Below, I have a list of what a photographer does! I also have a full, detailed article that goes into greater depth if you want to know how a wedding photographer actually spends a typical day:
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Is Wedding Photography Cost So Much
I grew up in worker class family, and I think twice before buying anything. I especially hate wasting my savings.Also, its totally legitimate to wonder if hiring a photographer more than $3000 is fair, when you can find a $500 one on Thumbtack. So what is a reasonable price for a wedding photographer?
The answer is obviously more complicated that a yes/not question, because of the quality of the image and the expectations you have!
If you have low expectation, just want some snapshot , then go for the cheapest one!First of all, spending some bad clichés you wont like would definitely be a bad idea and a waste of cash!
But if the result allows you to relieve some amazing moments as many times as you want, and give an heirloom album to your great kids, then that should be considered as an investment.
Yes, photography does cost a lot, and here are the reasons
Yes, having exceptional is a luxury service. Photographers, have costs: advertise, equipment, websites, formation, tax, research, just to name few of them. And they also need to live.Whats more, unfortunately there are no weddings weekdays. And if you had ever run an artistic business, you would know that the funny part , is only one very percentage of all the rest you have to do.For instance, taking pictures represent less than 10% of my time.
The Perverse Effect the internet When Choosing a Photographer
Estimate The Time Involved
Measuring the value of a wedding photograph is tough. The wedding photos will decorate the walls of the familys house for decades. Their emotional value is priceless.
But you need to charge your clients somehow. To guide your decisions, estimate how much time youll invest in each wedding.
Yes, youll spend several hours actually photographing the wedding. But many new photographers dont realise how much more time is involved than just that actual wedding day. If you charge $1,000, youre not earning $1,000 in a single day.
When estimating the amount of work, in addition to the hours spent shooting, dont forget to include:
- Meeting with the bride and groom before the wedding
- Creating and filing contracts and other paperwork
- Shooting engagement photos, if included in the price
- Travelling to the location
- Editing images
- Creating any deliverables such as prints or digital copies along with album design.
Wedding photography doesnt end up being a single days work once you put everything together. The answer varies a bit from photographer to photographer. For me, a full wedding package is closer to 30-40 hours of work than the 10 spent on the actual wedding day.
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